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HesperosStudies in Ancient Greek Poetry Presented to M. L. West on his Seventieth Birthday$
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P. J. Finglass, C. Collard, and N. J. Richardson

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199285686

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199285686.001.0001

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Lucian and Archilochus, or: How to Make Use of the Ancient Iambographers in the Context of the Second Sophistic

Lucian and Archilochus, or: How to Make Use of the Ancient Iambographers in the Context of the Second Sophistic

Chapter:
(p.132) 11 Lucian and Archilochus, or: How to Make Use of the Ancient Iambographers in the Context of the Second Sophistic
Source:
Hesperos
Author(s):

Heinz-Günther Nesselrath

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199285686.003.0011

Lucian's pamphlet ‘The Mistaken Critic, or: On the nefarious day’ is one of the most vitriolic pieces of invective in ancient Greek literature. The enemy that Lucian demolishes in this pamphlet apparently made the mistake of taking Lucian to task on a topic where the versatile Greek satirist hailing from Syrian Samosata was most sensitive: he dared question Lucian's competence in the subtleties of Greek style and expression, contending that Lucian had used the word άποφράς (meaning ‘unlucky/ill-omened’) in an inappropriate and ‘barbarous’ way. Being called a ‘barbaros’ in matters of language was one of the things Lucian liked least, and in ‘The Mistaken Critic’ he pounced upon his adversary with savage delight, insulting every bit of his opponent's character and life and demonstrating his own mastery of Greek prose style at the same time. This chapter focuses on how Lucian starts his rhetorical demolition work, namely by invoking Archilochus.

Keywords:   Lucian, Archilochus, The Mistaken Critic, rhetoric, barbaros

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