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Images of Virgil: some examples of the creative approach to the Virgilian biography in antiquity.

POWELL, JAMES,EDWIN (2011) Images of Virgil: some examples of the creative approach to the Virgilian biography in antiquity. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



This thesis explores the reception of the Virgilian biography in antiquity. The ancients were interested not only in the Virgilian oeuvre, but also in the man who created these works. The thesis will investigate the ways in which various authors respond to Virgil’s life, with an especial emphasis on how the Virgilian biography is something amenable to creative appropriation and manipulation. The authors we will be studying both respond to, and contribute towards the construction of, the biographical tradition of Virgil. Chapter 1 seeks to complicate the idea of Virgil’s poetic career by considering how certain writers broach the issue of the Culex as a putative piece of Virgilian juvenilia. The second chapter examines how Virgil’s tomb and the cult which surrounded it play a part in the biographies and autobiographies of his epic successors. The third chapter offers a fresh look at biographical readings of the Eclogues, focusing on the different ways in which this practice is carried out, and the different purposes to which it is put. The final chapter looks at Tacitus’ presentation of the Virgilian biography in the Dialogus de Oratoribus, examining how the historian raises the question of Virgil’s political allegiances, and how he interrogates the idealization of Virgil’s life.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Classics and Ancient History, Department of
Thesis Date:2011
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:06 Mar 2012 15:24

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