The Artistry Of The Homeric Simile

Overview

The similes in Homer are treasure troves. They describe scenes of Greek life that are not presented in their simplest form anywhere else: landscapes and seascapes, storms and calm weather, fighting among animals, civic disputes, athletic contests, horse races, community entertainment, women involved in their daily tasks, men running their farms and orchards. These basic paratactic additions to the narrative show how the Greeks found and developed parallels between two scenes—each of which elucidated and ...

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The Artistry of the Homeric Simile

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Overview

The similes in Homer are treasure troves. They describe scenes of Greek life that are not presented in their simplest form anywhere else: landscapes and seascapes, storms and calm weather, fighting among animals, civic disputes, athletic contests, horse races, community entertainment, women involved in their daily tasks, men running their farms and orchards. These basic paratactic additions to the narrative show how the Greeks found and developed parallels between two scenes—each of which elucidated and interpreted the other—then expressed those scenes in effective poetic language.

In The Artistry of the Homeric Simile, Scott explores the variations and modifications that Homer employs in order to make similes blend expressively with the larger context. This engaging study will help unlock the richness of Homer for the modern reader.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
‘Scott's work makes an important contribution to the study of the Homeric simile. Its strength lies in the presentation of a theory for simile analysis and for the manner in which similes blend with the narrative. Scholars will definitely benefit from employing Scott's observations, and it is hoped that this book find its way into future discussions of Homer.” —Bryn Mawr Classical Review

“This is an attractive and useful study of the Homeric simile and of its role in the performance and creation of Homeric poetry.”—The Classical Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781584657972
  • Publisher: University Press of New England
  • Publication date: 11/10/2009
  • Pages: 278
  • Product dimensions: 0.63 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 9.00 (d)

Meet the Author

WILLIAM C. SCOTT is emeritus professor of classics at Dartmouth College. His previous publications include The Oral Nature of the Homeric Simile, Musical Design in Aeschylean Theater, Plato’s The Republic with Richard W. Sterling, and Musical Design in Sophoclean Theater.

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Table of Contents

Preface
Similes, the Shield of Achilles, and Other Digressions
The Usefulness of Book Divisions
The Simileme: The Background of the Homeric Simile
The Oral Nature of Homeric Verse
The Simileme
Homer and His Audience
Simile and Simileme
Homer’s Use of Similes to Delineate Character and Plot
Iliad, Book 2: Ironic Characterization
The Similes of Book 2
The Role of Similes in Book 2
Iliad, Books 21 and 22: Similes to Show a Thematic Contrast
Iliad, Book 11: Similes to Mark a Shifting Scene
Conclusion
Similes to Delineate a Narrative Theme
Iliad, Book 12: Direct Focus on a Single Theme
Iliad, Book 5: The Use of Parallel Similemes to Create a Unified Theme
Odyssey, Book 22: Similes to Interpret Typical Actions
Odyssey, Book 5: Thematic Similes
Conclusion
Problem Books
Iliad, Book 13: The Ordering of Conscious Chaos
Iliad, Book 17: Similes as Guides through a Series of Type Scenes
Iliad, Book 16: Similes for Complexity
Conclusion
The Creative Poet and the Co-creating Audience
The Simile within the Narrative
The Poet’s Choices in Forming the Individual Simile
The Creative Moment: Poet and Audience
Charts of Similemes: The Basic Motifs
Notes
Bibliography
Index

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