The main source of the anecdotes about ancient painters, sculptors and architects is the Natural History of Pliny the Elder. The article focuses on the shaping of these stories from more approaches. The basis is the theory of the cultural memory. To broaden the scope of the analysis, Pliny's representation of the artists is compared with releva...nt passages from other writers. The paper determines the ancient types of the anecdotes of artist and tries to show the connection between the content and the age in which they were born.
The name of Marcus Ofilius Hilarius occurs in no other source besides book VII of Pliny’s encyclopaedia. With this in mind, the narrative giving an extensive account of the death of the actor needs further explanation. The present paper takes a look at the narrower and broader context of this detail, which lends the story a meaning and a stru...cturing function within the Naturalis Historia. This inquiry enables us to draw certain conclusions not only about book VII, but the whole encyclopedia as well.
The article offers a comparative analysis of Ovid’s stories of Narcissus and Pygmalion. The analysis highlights the intertextual link between the two narratives, and uses it as the basis for comparison, focusing on the single aspect: who creates what, and how. The paper concludes that what is at stake in the two texts at a fundamental level c...an be found in the sphere of aesthetics
The literature of classical antiquity has lost much of its attraction, and the circle of its possible readers has been narrowed significantly. Even in literary criticism that reaches beyond classical philology, its position has dwindled to a source of motifs, topics, archetypes, and we clearly lack such interpretations as would present ancient...literature from an angle that would appeal to the readers of our age. This paper is devoted to an analysis of the 20th and the 21st chapters of the zoological part (book 8) of Pliny the Elder’s Naturalis Historia. Through a comparative interpretation that is attentive to the cultural-medial aspects of the textual locus, the essay provides a paradigm for uncovering the meaning – which would appeal to readers in the 21st century – in ancient texts with the help of different methodological perspectives, in this case the simultaneous application of narratological and comparative approaches.
The essay proceeds from the observation that out of the surviving literature of antiquity only one poet, Ovid pays significant attention to the tragic fate of Marsyas. Both the Fasti and the Metamorphoses relate the tale. The narrative in Metamorphoses only focuses on the naturalistic description of the punishment, th...e flaying of Marsyas. The interpretation of this account within even wider contexts leads to the proposition that Marsyas’s tale is the self-reflection of the elegiac poet Ovid, and as such it becomes a key narrative within Metamorphoses.