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Exemplary Epic - Silius Italicus' Punica | Oxford Scholarship Online
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Exemplary Epic: Silius Italicus' Punica

Ben Tipping


The force of example was a distinctive determiner of Roman identity. However, examples always rely upon the response of an audience, and are dependent upon context. Even where the example presented is positive, we cannot always suppress any negative associations it may also carry. This book considers the virtues and vices they embody, their status as exemplars, and the process by which Silius as epic poet heroizes, demonizes, and establishes models. The book argues that example is a vital source of significance within the Punica, but also an inherently unstable mode, the lability of which affe ... More

Keywords: Roman identity, audience, Silius Italicus, virtues, vices, epic hero, villain, Hannibal

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2010 Print ISBN-13: 9780199550111
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199550111.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Ben Tipping, author
Assistant Professor of the Classics, Harvard University