The Rivals of Aristophanes: Studies in Athenian Old Comedy
Myfanwy Tristram, Kenneth Dover
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Author note: David Harvey (Editor), John Wilkins (Editor), Myfanwy Tristram (Illustrator), Kenneth Dover (Forward)
Due to the scarcity of surviving texts by other poets, it is easy to forget that Aristophanes wrote for competition and that rivalry was an important component in the rhetoric of his comedies, especially Clouds and Knights .
This important study, comprising 26 essays by leading international scholars presented at a conference held at the Institute of Classical Studies in London in 1996, aims to promote a better understanding of Aristophanes' work by assessing that of his many rivals, including Cratinus, Hermippus and Eupolis, who regularly triumphed over Aristophanes at major civic festivals.
The papers also consider the evidence for Aristophanes' rival poets in other sources, notably painted vases. The chapters are divided into five sections: editing comic fragments, poets of Old Comedy, the transition to Middle Comedy, literary themes and social themes.
Kenneth Dover, W Geoffrey Arnott, Wolfgang Luppe, Ralph M Rosen, James Davidson, S Douglas Olson, Dwora Gilula, David Harvey, Jeffrey Henderson, David Braund, Giorgos Kavvadias, Ian C Storey, Thomas Braun, Heinz-Guenther Nesselrath, Keith Sidwell, N J Lowe, Bernhard Zimmermann, Stephen Colvin, Michael Silk, Angus Bowie, John Wilkins, Nick Fisher, Andrew Dalby, Edith Hall, Christopher Carey, Alan H Sommerstein, Paola Ceccarelli, Ian Ruffell.
may in fact prefer a distinction to exist; see Plato Laws 777cd and Aristotle Pol. 1330a25–8 on the unwisdom of having slaves who speak the same dialect as their masters, and cf. George Orwell’s expatriate businessman in colonial Burma: ‘Don’t talk like that, damn you – “I find it very difficult!” Have you swallowed a dictionary? “Please, master, can’t keeping ice cool” – that’s how you ought to talk. We shall have to sack this fellow if he gets to talk English too well.’ (Burmese Days ch. ii,
the creation of roles for human beings dressed as animals allowed the comic poets to explore and occasionally to challenge the alimentary codes that underlay the social and religious life of the polis. Old Comedy reinforces Athenian culture as the Athenians defined it and portrays many scenes in which foods are cooked and consumed. But it was not above giving a voice occasionally to the animals and fish on which human culture depended for its subsistence. Acknowledgement I am most grateful to
could, therefore, belong to any date between 427 and 388) seems to refer unequivocally to ‘putting on paignia , and Gnesippus, a writer of the 440s or 430s, is described by Athenaeus as paigniagraphos. Even if we cannot assume that Paignia was the title of his works, we can at least infer that poets of the mid-fifth century were composing lyrical mimes which were recognisable as paignia to Athenaeus and probably to his source – in all likelihood, a Hellenistic student of kōmōidoumenoi (men mocked
168-78, where the limits of desire are Caria and Carthage: see Loraux 1981, 86–9 and Schmitz 1988, 116–25. 14Retaining the reading of the MSS. K-A (whose text is otherwise followed here) prefer to accept Kock’s emendation Θεσσαλίας on the grounds that the χόνδρος of Thessaly is praised elsewhere (see their apparatus); it also avoids hiatus. 15‘Lies’ perhaps instead of ‘timber’ (Gomme I 201–3 on Thuc. 1.57.2, and n. 18 below); but the date of the treaty in which Perdiccas guaranteed that he
caricature of the personal background of his opponent, ‘who just the other day (χθές καὶ πρώην) became an Athenian and a politician and added two syllables to his father’s name’. There can be no hint here of any biographical truth, especially in ‘just the other day’, since Demothenes 18 belongs to 330 and Aischines had been on the scene for at least twenty years. I suggest that the phrase χθές καὶ πρώην belongs to the iambic tradition and is part of an established and well-developed caricature of