RATIONES RERUM 9
Gennaio – Giugno 2017
La manualistica erotica ellenistica: diaspora di una ars erotica
This paper offers a reconstructive picture of the lost erotic manual of Philaenis of Samos, as well as the literary space to which it belonged. Greek erotic manuals – for us a “submerged” literary genre – were the main axis on which in the Greco-Roman world developed an ars erotica, not only as a place of identity and social recognition, but also as an inseparable set of iconography and erotic knowledge. The main feature of ars erotica was the expository dimension of eroticism and desire, a trait that hinders our ability to reconstruct its historical and social reality. Starting from the literary and iconographic diaspora that has characterized the erotic treatises since antiquity, this paper tries to recover the fragments of this lost work and offers a reading of them free of historical anachronisms.
Pissutne, satrapo della Lidia
The paper evaluates the role of Pissouthnes, satrap of Sardis in Lydia in the fifth century BC (440-415 ca.), in the context of the political relations among Athens, its allies, and Persia. It highlights Pissouthnes’ anti-Athenian politics, which undermined the solidity of the Athenian empire with the help of the pro-Persian factions in the Greek cities of Asia Minor.
Annone, l’uomo più coraggioso del mondo
Because of the loss of Phoenician-Punic literature, the history of this civilization must be reconstructed not only through archaeological sources but also through epigraphical evidence and Greek and Latin literary works. This article discusses stories about men named Hanno and their interactions with animals.
Gli hegesamenoi di Eraclea Pontica
The local traditions of Heraclea Pontica (Herodorus, Nymphis, and Memnon), as well as the accounts of non-local authors such as Ephorus and Apollonius Rhodius, mention several founders of this Megarian city (although Strabo erroneously identifies it as an ionian colony). Among them are Damis, an ancestor of Heraclides Ponticus; the Boeotian Tiphys of Boeotia and idmon of Argos, who participated in the expedition of the Argonauts; Gnesiochos of Megara; and Agamestor, an epichoric hero.
Thomas R. Martin – Ivy Sui-Yuen Sun
«The Gods were Supervising the Hardest-to-Handle Sufferings of Greece»: the Meaning of Episkopein in Plutarch, Phocion 28
The meaning of episkopein in Plutarch, Phocion 28 is crucial for understanding the nature and the depth of the anguished reaction of the majority of Athenians to their defeat in the Lamian War in 322 and the subsequent dire punishment imposed on them by Antipater. Although this word in this passage has frequently been translated (into English) to mean something like “to look down with indifference upon” with reference to the relationship between the gods and “the hardest-to-handle sufferings of the Greeks”, investigation of the uses of the word in Plutarch and other texts shows that it in fact means something like “to supervise, to oversee, to manage”. Therefore, Plutarch is reporting that Athenians believed that the gods had responsibility for their sufferings. This belief in turn created mental distress manifested as cognitive dissonance because Athenians, who had publically proclaimed that they had been fighting to protect the honors of the gods, found it inexplicable that the gods had overseen their punishment.
Una nota petroniana. Il finto sonno del fanciullo di Pergamo (Sat. 85-87)
The paper deals with Petronius’ novel concerning the boy from Pergamon (Sat. 85-87) and explores the possibility that the sleep he simulates, in order to provoke the sexual advances of the old pedagogue, had been inspired by the proverb, quoted by Cicero, non omnibus dormio. The proverb is also associated with an erotic context in Festus, lucilius, and Plutarch.
Cynthianum. Il nome di Genzano di Roma dalle origini alle dispute settecentesche
Still today the name “Genzano” (a small city near Rome) is usually linked to the toponym Cynthianum, which in turn would derive from Cynthia, the epithet of the great goddess of the Aricine wood. The paper tries to shed light on the origins of this etymology.
«Le Graie dalle belle guance, canute fin dalla nascita» (Esiodo, Teogonia 270). Genesi ed esegesi di un paradosso semantico
This paper analyzes the Hesiodic passage on the «fair-cheeked Graiai, sisters grey from their birth», Pemphredo «the well-clad», and Enyo «the saffronrobed» (Th. 270-275). Starting from Hesiod’s paradoxical expression “whitehaired virgins”, the study investigates the role of the Graiai in myth by comparing different versions of this tale. These marine divinities, as their names suggest, have been considered since antiquity to be personifications of the white foam or the stormy sea, and have also been connected with a subterranean dimension. In spite of this, their role as “reluctant helpers” in Perseus’ fight against the Gorgo is not entirely negative.
Rec. a Igor Baglioni, Echidna e i suoi discendenti. Studio sulle entità mostruose della Teogonia esiodea, Roma, Edizioni Quasar 2017
Rec. a Marcello Lupi, Sparta. Storia e rappresentazioni di una città greca, Roma, Carocci editore 2017
Rec. a Renzo Tosi (a cura di), Dizionario delle sentenze greche e latine, edizione aggiornata. Milano, Rizzoli 2017