- Autumn 2017
Latin 520 Horace, Odes Stephen Hinds AQ 2017 TTh 4:00-5:50
Exploration of Horace, Odes 1-3, published as a three-book collection in 23 BCE. Close investigation of poems from all three books, and discussion of the positioning of Horatian lyric in literary history and in the poetic and socio-political worlds of Augustan Rome. These extraordinarily diverse poems (hymns, erotic lyrics, praise-poems, recusationes, sympotica, political broadcasts, mythological narratives) demand to be read simultaneously as occasional poems and as collected poems, often tied to particular addressees and situations but also contributing to one of the most ambitious art-works in Latin literature. Who would emulate Pindar? Some of you have spent quality time recently with the great Theban, so we will also include at least one poem from Horace’s later-published fourth book: Odes 4.2.
As required texts, two very recent Cambridge ‘green and yellow’ texts and commentaries will be available in paperback through the U Bookstore: Roland Mayer (2012) on Odes 1 and Stephen Harrison (2017, just published) on Odes 2. I will pick and pdf a reference text for Odes 3 closer to the time. No less important to the week by week ecology of the seminar will be the fuel for discussion provided by the legendary Oxford reference commentaries (no text included) of R.G.M. Nisbet and Margaret Hubbard on Odes 1 and 2, and their (mostly) worthy successor, R.G.M. Nisbet and Niall Rudd on Odes 3. These are not prescribed for purchase, and will be available for reference on the course shelf. (However, if you are looking to build a library in Latin poetry, Nisbet-Hubbard on Odes 1, in particular, is currently at its lowest dollar price in a generation.) Alongside the battery of commentaries on the Odes, Horace has enjoyed some decades of often cutting-edge modern literary criticism; this will form part of our exploration.