On the Good King According to Kallimachos
The conclusion of The New Politics of Olympos sets the arguments developed throughout the book in the context of praise rhetoric and suggests further ways in which Kallimachos’ poetry book may have shaped its readers’ views on what constitutes good rule. In particular, it examines the potential impact of the Hymns on a Ptolemaic reader for whom the book might serve as an education in and inducement to good kingship. This speculation is bolstered by comparison with Hermokles’ hymn for Demetrios Poliorketes as well as the literary trope of the speculum regis (“king’s mirror”). Finally, the conclusion examines Kallimachos’ didactic presentation of Erysichthon, whose transgression and punishment is the subject of the Hymn to Demeter. Such edifying moments throughout the Hymns incentivize good kingship and gently admonish its opposite.
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