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Herodas: Mimiambs$
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Graham Zanker

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780856688836

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9780856688836.001.0001

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The Fragments

The Fragments

(p.236) The Fragments
Herodas: Mimiambs
Graham Zanker
Liverpool University Press

This chapter focuses on the Fragments, which is part of Herodas' Mimiamb 8. It presents Hippônax, who criticizes Herodas' poetry for crossing the form of the genre of comic drama and the metre of the genre of iambic invective. Herodas pleads guilty as charged, but none the less defends and maintains his procedure. This he does by invoking the sanction of the god of poetry, noting the signs of humility present in his closing comment that he will sing choliambic poetry after Hippônax. The chapter discusses the 'crossing of genres' as a well known and understood characteristic of Hellenistic poetry, in which the Hellenistic poets cross the form of the 'grand' genres, especially the hexameter of epic. It also mentions the humorous clash of content and form in Theokritos' fourth and fifth Idylls, where country folk pass the time of day or obscenely abuse one another in grand hexameters.

Keywords:   Mimiambs, Herodas, Hippônax, comic drama, iambic invective, choliambic poetry, Hellenistic poets

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