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BOOK Ø The Thebaid Seven against Thebes Johns Hopkins New Translations from Antiuity Í Publius Papinius Statius

A classical epic Seven against PDFEPUB #232 of fratricide and war the Thebaid retells the legendary conflict between the sons of Oedipus — Polynices and Eteocles — for control of the city of Thebes The Latin poet Statius reworks a familiar story from Greek myth dramatized long before by Aeschylus in his tragedy Seven against Thebes Statius chose his subject well the Rome of his day ruled by the emperor Domitian was not too distant from the civil wars that had threatened the survival of the empire Published in AD the Thebaid was The Thebaid Kindle an immediate success and i This review is slightly spoilery than usual because 1 the book is like 2000 years old and 2 99% of the people who are going to read it will be familiar with the basic plot anywayThe Thebaid is a great subject for an epic poem It was featured in Aeschylus’ tantalizing tragedy The Seven Against Thebes but most readers of the classics will be familiar with the story by way of Sophocles’ Antigone arguably the greatest tragedy from all antiuity King Oedipus of Thebes leaves his throne to his two sons Eteocles and Polynices to share each is to rule for a year and then hand the scepter off to his brother Eteocles gets to go first and at the end of the year decides he’d rather not step down after all Polynices raises an army and attacks Thebes where all hell breaks loose The Thebans stubbornly defend the city’s seven gates as the seven heroes of Polynices’ army die one by one in epic fashion swallowed by the earth battling river gods or even zapped by Jupiter himself The carnage culminates in a grim one on one battle between the two brothers Brotherly loveHowever despite its exciting subject matter the Thebaid is viewed as a second rate epic and is not widely read although this perception may be shifting I’ll address its problems first before moving on to what the poem does wellThe Bad Problems in Silver Age EpicThere are three common criticisms of “Silver Age” post Augustan ie after 14 AD Latin epic it’s too violent too derivative and it features an unappealing style The first criticism doesn’t really apply to Statius’ epic; while it is very violent indeed I never felt it was truly lurid like Lucan’s Pharsalia or some of Seneca’s tragedies with the exception of one crazy scene where a dying hero starts gnawing on his killer’s severed head The second criticism is on the mark Silver Age poets Lucan excepted copied their predecessors Homer and Virgil to an obsessive degree They slavishly made sure that every specific set piece was included the gathering of armies the reuisite trip to the underworld a gaming competition etc Statius dutifully stuffs all of this into the first half of his epic which takes place over three years and at times I thought it would take me three years to get through it all Whatever its other merits the Thebaid is not a particularly original poem and if you’ve read your Homer Virgil much of the Thebaid is going to feel familiarThe derivative nature of Silver Age epic creates a problem of style Because Silver Age poets felt constrained by tradition to tackle certain themes in certain ways they relied on their poetic style to distinguish themselves from their peers This causes epics like the Thebaid to feel a little overwritten stuffed to the gills with metaphors allusions and references as they are All in all I didn’t feel like the Thebaid was too bad in this respect but it definitely felt a little overstuffedThe GoodMost of the poem’s problems are in its first half as Statius struggles to jam every paint by numbers Homeric trope into the first six books But once Polynices and his army finally get to Thebes in book seven the poem becomes a lot of fun Statius has a knack for portraying battles in the epic style and each of the Argive heroes gets a memorable sendoff The culminating fratricidal battle between Eteocles and Polynices is built up well and is suitably tragic and horrifying Readers that liked The Illiad or the second half of the Aeneid will enjoy this part of the book ”To this point war made a gallant show plumes stood uprighteach horse had a rider no chariot lacked a driver;arms were all well ordered – the shields and elegant uiversand belts glowed their gold not yet dulled and smutched with goreBut once raging Madness and Courage careless of lifehad released their force no arctic storm unleashed as the Kidsset lashes high Rhodope with blizzards so blinding;nor is there such a din in Ausonia when Jupiter’s thunder crashes across the sky; nor does Sidra uake

TEXT The Thebaid Seven against Thebes Johns Hopkins New Translations from Antiuity

The Thebaid Seven against Thebes Johns Hopkins New Translations from AntiuityTs fame grew in succeeding centuries It reached its peak of popularity in the later Middle Ages and Renaissance influencing Dante Chaucer and perhaps Shakespeare In recent times however it has received perhaps less attention than it Thebaid Seven against Thebes Johns PDFEPUBdeserves in large part because there has been no accessible dynamic translation of the work into EnglishCharles Stanley Ross offers a compelling version of the Thebaid rendered into forceful modern English Casting Statius's Latin hexameter into a lively iambic pentameter natural to the modern ear Ross frees I love roman epic Greek epic classical tragedy classical comedy I just can't bring myself to like Statius I found him underwhelming and slow attention seeking and kind of a suck up I know it is Silver Latin so this shouldn't come as a surprise but I feel like Statius missed the train that other Roman writers hopped on in the fine line between being obnoxious and being cheeky


Publius Papinius Statius Í The Thebaid Seven against Thebes Johns Hopkins New Translations from Antiuity PDF

PDF ↠ BOOK The Thebaid Seven against Thebes Johns Hopkins New Translations from Antiuity FREE Í DOGSALONBRISTOL ☆ ✅ [PDF / Epub] ☉ The Thebaid Seven against Thebes Johns Hopkins New Translations from Antiuity By Publius Papinius Statius ⚣ &The work from Thebaid Seven against PDF #206 the archaic formality that has marred previous translations His translation reinvigorates the Thebaid as a whole its meditative first half and its violent second half its intimate portrayal of defeat and retribution and the need to seek justice at any cost In a wide ranging introduction Ross provides an overview of the poem its composition reception and legacy its major themes and literary influences and its place in Statius' life And in a helpful series of notes he offers background information on the major characters and incident Read for my Roman Horror Literature class at University 30 stars