Simonides is tantalising and enigmatic, known both from fragments and from an extensive tradition of anecdotes. This monograph, the first in English for a generation, employs a two-part diachronic approach: Richard Rawles first reads Simonidean fragments with attention to their intertextual relationship with earlier works and traditions, and then explores Simonides through his ancient reception. In the first part, interactions between Simonides' own poems and earlier traditions, both epic and lyric, are studied in his melic fragments and then in his elegies. The second part focuses on an important strand in Simonides' ancient reception, concerning his supposed meanness and interest in remuneration. This is examined in Pindar's Isthmian 2, and then in Simonides' reception up to the Hellenistic period. The book concludes with a full re-interpretation of Theocritus 16, a poem which engages both with Simonides' poems and with traditions about his life.
Introduction; Part I. Simonides and the Poets of the Past: 1. Epic traditions in lyric songs; 2. The 'new Simonides': Homeric and Elegiac transformations; Part II. Simonidea: Simonides Through Ancient Receptions: 3. Pindar, Simonides and money: Pindar's Isthmian 2; 4. Simonides and wealth: a critical description of the tradition; 5. From stories to songs: Simonides essiaei in the fragments; 6. Simonides, history and eeYi-: Theocritus' Charites or Hieron. Conclusion.