Problems in Horace, epode 11

Classical Quarterly 65 (2):673-681 (2015)
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Fraenkel dismissed Epode 11 with the statement that it ‘is an elegant piece of writing, but there is little real life in it’. By this ambiguously expressed comment he did not mean that the poem fails to ‘come alive’, but that it is artificial: he saw the poem as little more than an assembly of themes and motifs which recur in other genres, especially epigram and elegy. This has also been the perspective of some other twentieth-century scholars: Georg Luck's self-styled ‘interpretation’ of the poem consists largely of a numbered list of thirteen motifs which the epode has in common with elegy and which in Luck's opinion were derived by Horace from Gallus. Alessandro Barchiesi, on the other hand, capitalizes on the perceived elegiac motifs in order to see the poem as a dynamic fusion of elegy and iambus. As for commentators, although older representatives seem to have regarded Epode 11 as generally self-explanatory, the poem receives increasing attention from Cavarzere, Mankin and Watson, the last of whom originally discussed some of its problems in a paper published twenty years earlier. Yet various problems still remain, and in this paper I propose to re-examine lines 1–6 and 15–18 in the hope that a clearer view of the epode as a whole may emerge.



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Anna Woodman
University of Alberta

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Horace in Love, Horace on Love.Giacomo Fedeli - 2023 - Classical Quarterly 73 (1):213-230.

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References found in this work

Problems in Epode 11.L. C. Watson - 1983 - Classical Quarterly 33 (01):229-.

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