|October 29, 2015||By Gregory Nagy listed under By Gregory Nagy, H24H, HeroesX|
In this posting, I show the thinking that went into a self-evaluation exercise that I had put together for “Heroes X.” In putting together the wording for this exercise as I wrote it in 2013, I was thinking of things that never made it into the book version. So, my thinking about Iliad 18.54–56 is being shared here in public for the very first time.
|August 19, 2015||By Gregory Nagy listed under By Gregory Nagy, H24H|
Thanks to the Giza Project at Harvard as directed by Professor Peter Der Manuelian, the discoveries and discovery procedures of pioneer archaeologists like George Reisner can be analyzed and applied to such intriguing questions as the blond ambition, as it were, of queens and courtesans in Egypt. The Classical Inquiries team has succeeded in persuading the Director of the Giza Archives Project to describe the challenges awaiting Classicists attracted by the comparative evidence offered by Egyptology.
|August 12, 2015||By Gregory Nagy listed under By Gregory Nagy, H24H|
The lamentations that the sisters and the wife of Cato had performed in mourning for him are symmetrical, in their dramatic force, to the lamentations that could have been performed by Porcia, daughter of Cato, for her husband Brutus. I cite here a most revealing passage I found in Plutarch’s Life of Brutus, along with my own translation from the original Greek. We see here the figure of Porcia expressing her intense feelings of foreboding as she contemplates the doom that awaits her husband at the Battle of Philippi. Instead of lamenting here, over and over again, Porcia reverts—over and over again—to a timeless picture of such lamentation, as performed by Andromache in her feelings of foreboding over the impending doom of her husband Hector.
|August 5, 2015||By Gregory Nagy listed under By Gregory Nagy, H24H|
Renaissance Opera is notorious for taking liberties with the facts in its portrayal of historical characters. Vivaldi’s Cato in Utica is no exception. My presentation explores here some strikingly comparable situations in ancient biographies, which value the integrity of plot and character—seemingly at the expense of historical facts. A case in point is Plutarch’s Cato the Younger, which gives us the initial impression that it veers from the reality that was Cato. It can be argued, however, that the literary construction of this biography is as “operatic” in its artistry as is the musical essence of Vivaldi’s Cato.
|July 22, 2015||By Gregory Nagy listed under By Gregory Nagy, H24H|
In this posting, I focus on the Greek form Akhaioí, a name translated as ‘Achaeans’. Together with the names Argeîoi and Danaoí, translated respectively as ‘Argives’ and ‘Danaans’, this name Akhaioí refers in Homeric poetry to Greek warriors who lived and died in the epic world of a heroic age. But what does Akhaioí really mean? Or, to put the question in another way, what is the etymology of Akhaioí?
|July 15, 2015||By Gregory Nagy listed under By Gregory Nagy, H24H|
In this posting for 2015.07.15, I concentrate on Poem 66 of Catullus, which is a remaking or even a “translation” of a poem of Callimachus known as the Lock of Berenice (Coma Berenices, Callimachus fragment 110 ed. Pfeiffer). These two poems are about an Egyptian queen who dedicated a lock of her hair to Aphrodite, goddess of love and sexuality.