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The Oxford History of Classical Reception in English LiteratureVolume 1: 800–1558$
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Rita Copeland

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199587230

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199587230.001.0001

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Prudentius and the Late Classical Biblical Epics of Juvencus, Proba, Sedulius, Arator, and Avitus

Prudentius and the Late Classical Biblical Epics of Juvencus, Proba, Sedulius, Arator, and Avitus

Chapter:
(p.351) Chapter 17 Prudentius and the Late Classical Biblical Epics of Juvencus, Proba, Sedulius, Arator, and Avitus
Source:
The Oxford History of Classical Reception in English Literature
Author(s):

Ad Putter

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199587230.003.0017

This chapter focuses on the works of Prudentius and the tradition of late classical biblical epic exemplified by the poets Juvencus, Proba, Sedulius, Arator, and Avitus, with particular reference to their place in the history of classical reception. This place is doubly important. On the one hand, their verse provided a filter through which pagan classics, most notably Virgil, were transmitted to the Christian West; on the other hand, these poets themselves achieved canonical status. Particular attention is paid to the use of biblical epics in the school curriculum of the early Middle Ages, and to their influence on both Old and Middle English narrative and lyric verse.

Keywords:   biblical epic, Prudentius, Avitus, Sedulius, Juvencus, Proba, reception of Virgil, early Christian Latin poetry

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