The reader and the resurrection in Prudentius

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In Prudentius, the bodily resurrection becomes a figure for poetic immortality. Just as the author believes that his God will one day raise him from the dead, he expects and invokes a Christian reader to authenticate and authorise the fragile verbal records of a poetry that is insistently human and fallen. In other words, Prudentius’ metapoetics are perfectly in sync with his theology. After (I) presenting Prudentius’ transformation at the end of his Praefatio and setting out the terms and scope of the argument, this article (II) shows how the author puts himself at the mercy of his readers and patrons in the Peristefanon poems and then (III) considers the body and the resurrection in the Liber Cathemerinon. A short section (IV) on fictionality and belief opens up the argument, and a conclusion (V) advances it through a reading of the end of De opusculis suis. This metapoetic reading of Prudentius reveals that the author's hopes for an afterlife are expressed in and through the creative imagining of poetic and fictional scenes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205–239
JournalJournal of Roman Studies
Volume109
Early online date11 Sep 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2019

Keywords

  • Prudentius
  • Latin literature
  • Late Antiquity
  • Christian poetry
  • reception
  • fiction

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'The reader and the resurrection in Prudentius'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this