Aristotle’s Lost Homeric Problems: Textual Studies by Robert Mayhew
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Overview: This volume consists of a set of studies focused on various aspects of a relatively neglected subject: a lost work of Aristotle entitled Homeric Problems. Most of the evidence for this lost work consists mainly of ‘fragments’ surviving in the Homeric scholia (comments in the margins of the medieval manuscripts of the Homeric epics, mostly coming from lost commentaries on these epics). But other sources have been neglected. The book has three parts. The first deals with preliminary issues: the relationship of this lost work to the Homeric scholarship that came before it, and to Aristotle’s comments on the Homeric epics in his extant Poetics; the evidence concerning the possible titles of this work; a neglected early edition of these fragments. In the second part, our knowledge of the Homeric Problems is expanded through an examination in context of quotations from (or allusions to) Homer in Aristotle’s extant works, and specifically in the History of Animals, the Rhetoric, and Poetics 21 (to each of which a chapter is devoted). Part III consists of four studies on select (and in most cases neglected) fragments. The volume intends to show (inter alia) that Aristotle in the Homeric Problems aimed to defend Homer against his critics, but not slavishly and without employing allegorical interpretation.
Genre: Non-Fiction > Faith, Beliefs & Philosophy > Literary Theory