Poetic Interplay: Catullus and Horace (Martin Classical Lectures)
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Carmina The following is from one of his most famous elegies, mourning for a lost brother Carmina Note: the diaeresis after the first hemiepes is marked here like a caesura a conventional practice. The latter elision spans the diaeresis in the last line. If only one hemiepes is employed, instead of a full pentameter, the elegiac couplet takes the form known as the First Archilochian, named after the Greek poet Archilochus. An example is found in the fourth book of Horace's Odes Carmina 4.
Housman once described as "the most beautiful poem in ancient literature",  introduced with these two lines:. Most extant examples of this meter are found in Lyric poetry , such as Horace's Carmina 1. Note: the final syllable in the 4th foot is marked long or short in some schemes to indicate natural syllable length but it is always long by position.
A dactylic tetrameter catalectic is sometimes joined to the dactylic hexameter to form a couplet termed the Alcmanian Strophe , named after the lyric poet Alcman some scholars however refer to the Alcmanian Strophe as the First Archilochian, as indeed there is a strong likeness between the two forms. Examples of the form are found in Horace's Odes carmina and Epodes , as here in his Epode The iambic family has short syllables one at a time, not in pairs like the dactylic family, and it allows resolution of long elements.
In this family there may also be anceps positions, that is, positions in which either a long or a short syllable is allowed.
Poets such as Horace and Catullus however employed iambic feet in pairs, each called a metron, in which fewer variations were allowed. Such a line of verse has three metra and the meter in that case is called 'iambic trimeter'. Here is the list of variations found in Horace,  which are more numerous than those in Catullus. Others are the result of outright substitution prosody , such as the anapaest in the first foot below.
Note that the first syllable Ca- in Canidia is long and it is thus in anceps, while -idi- is the equivalent of a long syllable and it is said to be resolved into two shorts—thus the first foot appears as if a dactyl has been substituted for an iamb. Long syllables are resolved into two shorts uu in the first metron 1a-1b , an effect that may have been intended to suggest the quick movement of tiny snakes that Canidia has tied to her hair.
Iambic verse of four feet, paired to make two metra, hence the name 'iambic dimeter'. It is constituted like the first and third metra of the iambic trimeter 1a, 1b, 3a, 3b , with which it is often joined to form couplets known as Iambic Distich. The iambic distich—a couplet comprising an iambic trimeter and iambic dimeter—is the basis of many poems of a genre known as Iambus , in which the poet abuses and censures individuals or even communities, whether real or imaginary.
Iambic rhythms were felt to be especially suited to this role. The Greek poet Archilochus was one of the main exponents of the iambic distich and he provided a model for Horace's Epodes The following couplet forms the first two lines of Epode 7. Note that the first syllables in both lines Quo and ap are in anceps and thus a spondee appears to have been substituted for an iamb in both the initial feet.
Also ti in scelesti is long by nature and it too is in anceps ; the third foot would otherwise be a tribrach uuu thanks to the resolution of a long syllable into the two shorts in rui. As a result of all these variations, the 3rd foot instead resembles a dactyl -uu. An iambic dimeter may be followed by a hemiepes to form the second line of a couplet, in which the first line is dactylic hexameter. This combination is called the second Archilochian. The iambic dimeter functions like an independent line, however, since it keeps the elements of a line-end i.
An example of this system is found in Horace's epode 13, lines 9— Note that the 5th foot in this example is a spondee—this is rare for Horace and it is meant to evoke the affectation of Neoteric poets like Catullus, thus complementing the sense of being suffused with perfume while listening to the lyre at a drinking party the Greek word Cyllenaea , which creates the double spondee, adds to the exotic aura.
The hemiepes also ends with brevis in longo.
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Here an iambic trimeter forms the first line of the couplet, and the positions of the iambic dimeter and hemiepes are reversed to form the second line, the hemiepes now coming before the iambic dimeter. The hemiepes still functions as if it were independent, retaining the pause of a line-end through brevis in longo or hiatus. An example has survived in Horace's Epode 11, as in lines here:.
Another couplet is formed when a line of dactylic hexameter is followed by a line of iambic dimeter, and this is called the First Pythiambic. The Greek poet Archilochus composed in this form but only fragments remain. Two of Horace's epodes 14 and 15 provide complete examples in Latin. The following couplet introduces his Epode The Second Pythiambic features an iambic trimeter instead of iambic dimeter in the second line. Horace's Epode 16 is an example. Usually associated with the comic theatre, it consists of seven feet with an extra syllable at the end instead of a full iambic foot.
In that case it is called iambic septenarius 'septenarius' means grouped in sevens.
Used outside the theatre, the feet are paired and then it is called iambic tetrameter catalectic catalectic means that the meter is incomplete. The stage allowed many variations but poets were quite strict in their use of it and Catullus allowed variations only in the first and fifth feet: . Catullus uses no variations at all here and he employs diminutives cuniculi, medullula, imula, oricila contemptuously in a description of the 'soft' Thallus.
Note that doubling of the consonant l lengthens several syllables that are naturally short, thus enabling a strict iambic rhythm. This meter was originated by the Greek iambic poet , Hipponax.
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The name choliambics means lame iambics and sometimes it is called scazons or limpers. It is intended to be graceless and awkward " It is basically an iambic trimeter but with a surprise ending in the last foot, featuring a trochee or spondee that cripples the iambic rhythm. As used by Catullus, the variations are as follows:. Caesuras are found after the first syllable either in the third or fourth feet, sometimes in both. Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a customer review. There's a problem loading this menu right now. Get fast, free shipping with Amazon Prime.
Your recently viewed items and featured recommendations. View or edit your browsing history. Free download. Book file PDF easily for everyone and every device. This Book have some digital formats such us :paperbook, ebook, kindle, epub, fb2 and another formats. Poetic Interplay By illustrating how Horace often found his own voice even as he acknowledged Catullus's genius, Putnam guides us to a deeper appreciation of the earlier poet as well. Comments 0. Bryn Mawr Classical Review. Murcielaga She-Bat Page not found! This expanded version of the Charles Beebe Martin Classical Lectures, delivered at Oberlin College in March , provides a fascinating close-up on the way one poet inhabits another.
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Poetic Interplay: Catullus and Horace
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