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Byzantine collections and anthologies of poetry

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Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationA Companion to Byzantine Poetry
EditorsWolfram Hörandner, Andreas Rhoby, Nikos Zagklas
Place of PublicationLeiden; Boston
PublisherBrill
Chapter15
Pages381-403
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)9789004392885
ISBN (Print)9789004391086
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Apr 2019

Publication series

NameBrill's Companions to the Byzantine World
Volume4
ISSN (Print)2212-7429

Abstract

While offering an overview of Byzantine compilations of poetry, this paper argues for their role as autonomous literary works situated in different sociocultural contexts, and emphasizes their significance for the transmission of the texts. It distinguishes anthologies from collections, having as a criterion the number of authors represented in a compilation. Collections are divided into two categories on the basis of the compiler’s identity: the poet himself, or an admirer of his work. It further proposes to differentiate “classicizing” and “Byzantine” anthologies, on the basis of their content. The Greek Anthology and its related anthologies are understood as “classicizing”, while anthologies of occasional poetry are classified as “Byzantine”. It argues that authorship was important for compilers only if they wished to emphasize the importance of a text. Finally, it is suggested that these compilations represent a group of aesthetic values which can be considered “canonical”.

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