This is the first monograph entirely devoted to the corpus of late classical Greek lyric poetry. Not only have the dithyrambs and kitharodic nomes of the New Musicians Timotheus and Philoxenus, the hymns of Aristotle and Ariphron, and the epigraphic paeans of Philodamus of Scarpheia and Isyllus of Epidaurus never been studied together, they have also remained hidden behind a series of critical prejudices - political, literary and aesthetic. Professor LeVen's book provides readings of these little-known poems and combines engagement with the style, narrative technique, poetics and reception of the texts with attention to the socio-cultural forces that shaped them. In examining the protean notions of tradition and innovation, the book contributes to the current re-evaluation of the landscape of Greek poetry and performance in the late classical period and bridges a gap in our understanding of Greek literary history between the early classical and the Hellenistic periods.
Pauline A. LeVen is Assistant Professor of Classics at Yale University, Connecticut. She has published articles on Timotheus' language, Athenaeus and the reception of New Music, Aristotle's Hymn to Virtue and fourth-century epigraphy, and is now working on a monograph devoted to the anecdote as a narrative and social practice.
Introduction: definitions, methods, prejudices of reception; 1. A collection of unrecollected authors? The corpus and its problems; 2. New music and its myths: rhetoric, persona, and the theatre stage; 3. Musical lives: reading through the lives of the poets; 4. The language of new music: poetics of compounds and baroque aesthetics; 5. From authority to fantasy: narrative, voice, fictionality; 6. A canon set in stone? Epigraphy, literacy, musical tourism; Conclusion.