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“La più grande e bella tra le gesta". Plutarco e la monomachia

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle

Translated title of the contribution"The greatest and fairest deed". Plutarch and the monomachy
Original languageItalian
Pages151-169
Volume8
JournalRevue internationale d'Histoire Militaire Ancienne
PublisherPresses Universitaires de France
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Abstract

This paper analyses the fundamental elements of Plutarch’s major accounts of duels (monomachies) fought by Greek and Roman characters. It shows how Homeric epic represents the main model for these episodes: the verbal and visual confrontation, the physical size and prowess, the adorned weapons, and the frightening appearance of the combatants, are the most frequently recurring elements, which regularly take precedence over historical plausibility or consistency within Plutarch’s corpus. Through a refined reworking, Plutarch imbues the duels with a heroic, dramatic tone which echoes a distant past and meets the literary culture of learned readers.

    Research areas

  • Plutarch, duel, monomachy, strategos, status, heroic tradition

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