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Campania in the Flavian Poetic Imagination$
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Antony Augoustakis and R. Joy Littlewood

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198807742

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198807742.001.0001

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The Fires of Campania

The Fires of Campania

Typhon and the Bay of Naples in Valerius Flaccus’ Argonautica

Chapter:
(p.43) 4 The Fires of Campania
Source:
Campania in the Flavian Poetic Imagination
Author(s):

Darcy Krasne

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198807742.003.0004

This chapter discusses how Valerius Flaccus in his Argonautica extends Pindar’s location of Typhon beneath the Bay of Naples (Pyth. 1.15–28) to associate mythology’s most notorious theomach with the Phlegraean Fields (V. Fl. 6.169–70) and, by conjunction with Ischia’s volcano Inarime, possibly even with Mount Vesuvius itself. In Flavian literature gigantomachy becomes symbolic of civil conflict and empire. Although Valerius’ epic narrative is played out far from Italy, the menace of Campania’s incarcerated giant reappears through digression, intertext, imagery, and genealogy, to the point that the adventures of Jason’s Argonauts seem Romanized through these recurrent reminders of civil war.

Keywords:   Valerius Flaccus, Bay of Naples, Vesuvius, Typhon, Inarime, volcanoes, Campania

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