Il numero 15 di Aevum Antiquum è dedicato al tema della morte di Agamennone come rappresentata nella poesia greca e latina e nelle fonti iconografiche greche, latine e italiche. L’articolo principale del FORUM è ad opera di Isabella Nova. Nova riconosce su un cratere a figure rosse (Boston, Museum of Fine Arts 63. 1246) databile intorno al 475-465 a.C. la prima occorrenza di una versione di questo episodio mitico diversa da quella che verrà proposta nell’Orestea di Eschilo; si tratta di una versione forse già presente in composizioni poetiche greche ora perdute, e che riemergerà in opere più tarde, in particolare nella tragedia Agamennone di Seneca: l’eroe argivo, prima di essere colpito da Egisto e da Clitennestra è immobilizzato con uno speciale chitone privo di aperture per la testa e le braccia, intessuto a questo scopo dalla moglie. Partecipano alla discussione G. Aricò, L. Castagna, L. de Giovanni, P.J. Finglass, E. Medda, C. Roscino, A.H. Sommerstein, R. Viccei.
Issue 15 of Aevum Antiquum discusses the topic of Agamemnon's death as represented in Greek and Latin poetry and in Greek, Latin and Italic iconographic sources. The main article of the FORUM is by Isabella Nova. She recognizes in the representation of Agamemnon's killing on a krater (Boston, Museum of Fine Arts 63.1246) dating to 475-465 BCE the first occurrence of a lesser known version of this mythical episode, different from the one later popularized by Aeschylus’ Oresteia; this version was possibly elaborated in earlier Greek poetic compositions now lost, and would resurface in Hellenistic and Latin sources, especially in Seneca’s tragedy Agamemnon: the hero is trapped in a special robe with no openings for the head and the arms weaved by his wife. G. Aricò, L. Castagna, L. de Giovanni, P.J. Finglass, E. Medda, C. Roscino, A.H. Sommerstein, R. Viccei contribute to the discussion.
This article aims at showing that on the Boston krater (Boston, Museum of Fine Arts 63. 1246) Agamemnon was portrayed wearing a finely decorated dress (rather than being trapped in the net described in the Aeschylean trilogy, as it is generally assumed). Such a representation recalls a lesser known mythical tradition, according to which Klytaimestra had weaved a robe without openings for the hands and the head and had offered it as a gift to Agamemnon (cp. Lycophron, Seneca, Dracontius).
The study examines some Etruscan urns, one Apulian oinochoe and a Roman sarcophagus illustrating a peculiar account of Agamemnon’s and Aigisthos’ murder. Subsequently, the difficult issue of identifying some of the characters represented therein is considered, also relying on the comparison with the fragments of Pacuvius’ Dulorestes.
The article discusses the final part of Seneca’s Agamemnon and, through a critical review of the study of Isabella Nova, attempts to clarify Seneca’s contribution to the topic of the killing of Agamemnon. In fact, Nova did not discuss the text of the Latin author, even though the words she uses as a title are a quotation from Seneca.
The paper examines the main literary traditions regarding Agamemnon’s death, starting from the Homeric poems and arriving, through Attic and Roman Republican tragedy, to Seneca’s play; its purpose is to show how the choice between different mythical variants is influenced by the general meaning of each work. Iconographic testimonies are brought into discussion when they prove to be useful to clarify some debated questions.
This article considers where Dr Nova’s article fits into the history of scholarship on the relationship between the Boston krater and Aeschylus’ Oresteia, and considers the attestations of the ‘robe without openings’ by means of which, in some accounts, Agamemnon is restrained while he is killed.
Taking as a starting point Isabella Nova’s discussion of the scene of Agamemnon’s death painted in the well-known krater Boston, Museum of Fine Arts 63. 1246, the article discusses the nature of the deadly peplos which entangles the king, and the relationship between the vase and Aeschylus’ treatment of the same subject. The two artists, independently, seem to have conceived the cloth in a similar way; it is also possible that the painter tried to represent Agamemnon as still wet after the bath: this remains, however, a controversial point.
The article presents a new analysis of the red-figured Attic calyx-krater in Boston, Museum of Fine Arts 63. 1246, representing the death of Agamemnon, and, on the basis of iconographic and textual records, offers a new interpretation for the transparent veil covering the body of the king, as ἐπίβλημα rather then ἔνδυμα, with reference to the thin shroud employed in the aristocratic funerary ritual depicted in epic poetry.
In her article Mortifera vestis, Nova succeeds in showing that Aeschylus innovates in making Agamemnon’s fatal robe an overgarment rather than a chiton. His objective was probably to associate Agamemnon strongly with the ideas of great wealth and luxury. Nova is also right to argue that Seneca’s version of Agamemnon’s murder is based, directly or indirectly, on a pre-Aeschylean account. Her other propositions are not persuasive.
This study discusses the mode of the murder of Agamemnon, involved in the mortifera vestis, and also the murder’s place and their meaning emerging from the entire context. The analysis of image and the semantic reconstruction take into account the Athenian context of production, the function of the vase and the potential recipients.
The narration of the episode of Actaeon in Ovid’s Metamorphoses is introduced by two verses (Met. III 141-142), in which – strangely enough for the Ovidian style in the poem – the narrative voice gives a judgement about the punishment inflicted by Diana on the innocent Actaeon. The article aims to explore three different hypotheses that can explain such unusual comment on the events: revision during the exile, interpolation, intertextual allusion to a different literary tradition, in which Actaeon was not so innocent.
The interpretation Simone Weil gives to Greek authors is marked by an unprecedented originality, can’t be cast into any cultural mould, and can’t be traced back to any foregoing author, excepted perhaps some of the Greek Church Fathers. By the same token, it is impossible to qualify her stance towards the ancient civilizations as ‘classicistic’, given her definitely anti-Roman and non-eurocentric attitude. Nevertheless, some idealizing assumptions, shared with classicism, are unmistakable also in Weil’s Greek contributions.
In P.Oxy. 2260, col. I (from Apollodorus’ treatise About the Gods, 2nd c. BCE) Athena’s epithet δολιχάορος is rejected, since a correct etymology of it is inconsistent with the iconography of the goddess. A new reading of the papyrus offers a more correct analysis of this very passage. The comment aims also to show how much Apollodorus ows to his teacher Aristarchus, from the antiquarian point of view (the armour of the Homeric heroes) as well as from the rhetorical one (which is confirmed by many Aristonicean scholia). Significantly, P.Oxy. 2260 attests the use of the term τρόπος in a rhetorical sense, thereby predating the hitherto first known occurrences of it (Philodemus and Cicero). The Hellenistic debate on the poetic term ἄορ (Philetas; Callimachus) is also reconstructed, as well as the ancient interpretations of Apollo’s epithet χρυσάορος. Finally, some reflections on the categories used by Apollodorus in interpreting the divine epithets.The comment aims also to show how much Apollodorus ows to his teacher Aristarchus, from the antiquarian point of view (the armour of the Homeric heroes) as well as from the rhetorical one (which is confirmed by many Aristonicean scholia). Significantly, P.Oxy. 2260 attests the use of the term τρόπος in a rhetorical sense, thereby predating the hitherto first known occurrences of it (Philodemus and Cicero). The Hellenistic debate on the poetic term ἄορ (Philetas; Callimachus) is also reconstructed, as well as the ancient interpretations of Apollo’s epithet χρυσάορος. Finally, some reflections on the categories used by Apollodorus in interpreting the divine epithets.
Fr. 34 B., that belongs to Varro’s Menippean satire Andabatae, presents important exegetical problems, because of its small dimensions and its obscure content. The mention of the divinities Zeus and Athena, as well as the mention of the mystagogi, ‘initiators’, allow us to refer the fragment to the religious sphere. This makes difficult to link fr. 34 B. with the other fragments, that generally seem to refer to the context of a philosophical debate between a Stoic and an Epicurean. However, it is possible to conciliate the text of fr. 34 B. with the wider context of the satire, if we read the passage as a part of the argument developed by the Epicurean philosopher against the Stoic belief in the divine providence.
The article aims at explaining the meaning of propositio and divisio in the Interpretationes Vergilianae of Ti.Cl. Donatus. The first part investigates into the definitions of the these technical terms in the rhetorical literature of the classical period and of Late Antiquity, particularly in Cicero’s and Quintilian’s works. The second part focuses on the use of propositio and divisio in the exegesis of Donatus, both in his preface to Aeneis and in the other passages of the poem.