Looking at two descriptions of landscape in Lucan’s Bellum Civile (the sacred grove near Massilia and the Libyan desert), we will try to show that the poet uses bucolic elements to depict some places. However, he does not use these pastoral elements to describe a locus amoenus but a locus horridus. Lucan’s landscape can be defined as an inversion and a subversion of the bucolic one.
In the framework of an European program that I direct — which is devoted to the enhancement of the humanist heritage of the Upper Rhine region (Southern Germany, Northern Switzerland and Alsace), that is the humanistic editions of the Greek and Roman authors held by the libraries —, a curious work to be found in the University Library of Basel has come to my attention. Indeed, I would like to speak about some aspects of the humanist reception of Virgil and more specifically of his Bucolica, concerning the form as well as the content.
The allegorical conception of the bucolic genre that became general in Nero’s time led to a simplification compared to Vergil’s complex art of creating symbols. Calpurnius overcame the limits of a mere reproductive imitation exactly by making use of the possibilities of pastoral allegory; in Corydon’s figure he painted a bitterly self ironic picture of his own efforts to establish himself, of the controversies of patronage and the miserable situation of poets. In
IV he does not only reverse the lines of allusions from Vergil, Ovid and other poets but also key concepts of the Augustan age such as
rusticitas, paupertas, simplicitas, vates
and thus confronts his own age with its deficiency in view of the idealised rule of Augustus. The
exalts the Golden Age of Nero, which has often been analysed separately from the narrative frame as a document of uninhibited
, can gain its full meaning only in this context.
A bukolikus műfaj allegorizáló fölfogása, mely Nero korában általánossá vált, soktekinte tben elszegényedést hozott Vergilius bonyolult jelképteremtő művészetéhez képest. Calpurniusnak azonban éppen a pásztori allegóriában rejlő lehetőségeket kiaknázva sikerült a pusztán reproduktív imitáció kötelmein túllépnie; Corydon alakjában saját érvényesülési törekvéseiről, a mecenatúra visszásságairól, a költők sanyarú helyzetéről rajzolt keserűen önironikus képet. A IV. ecloga nem pusztán Vergilius, Ovidius és más költők allúziók megidézte szövegeit fordítja visszájára, hanem az augustusi kor irodalmának olyan kulcsfogalmait is, mint a rusticitas, paupertas, simplicitas, vates, ezáltal pedig saját korát Augustus eszményített uralkodásának tükrében szembesíti fogyatékosságaival. A Nero aranykorát magasztaló dalverseny, melyet gyakran vizsgáltak a kerettörténetből kiemelve a gátlástalan adulatio dokumentumaként, csak ebben a szövegkörnyezetben nyeri el teljes értelmét.
This article is dedicated to a short treatise, located within the corpus of bucolic authors’ scholia, that shows a textual tradition different from the one transmitted by the other known sources and references of bucolic poetry tradition related to the works of Theocritus, Bion and Moscos. Edition and analysis of the work was carried out and organized so to suggest an interpretation of each text, discussing the figure of the author, tentatively identified with Theon Grammaticus, son of Artemidorus. Aim of the work is to reconsider a critical text possibly transmitted in fragmentary form, of which a reconstruction could be attempted.
At the beginning of the 19th century, when the poets wanted to create the national epic poem of Hungarians, they followed the Aeneid; at the end of the 18th century, when the agricultural reform was established in Hungary under the Habsburgs, the poets wrote agricultural poems in Vergilian form and translated and modernized his Georgics. The world of Vergil depicted in the Eclogues and in the Georgics became the idealized Arcadia, and poets and writers or the aristocracy — influenced by Vergil — wanted to create their own Arcadia. The pastoral theme and the bucolical forms were very popular in Hungarian literature of this period, at the end of the 18th century. The poets had pastoral names, and very different topics were expressed in eclogues (e.g. actual events of politics). In the first half of the 20th century Vergil had a new renaissance connected to the bimillennium of his birth. And this renaissance reached the most expressive element of the presence of Vergil’s Bucolics in the poetry of Miklós Radnóti (1909–1944), whose eclogues are the most tragic expression of cruelty of war. My paper focuses on the influence of Virgil’s Bucolics in Radnóti’s poetry, but his examples can attest to the deep influence of Vergil on Hungarian literature.
Gaspare Tribraco (1439 – ca. 1493) is an almost completely neglected poet despite the fact that his Bucolicon was probably the first collection of eclogues ordered in an elaborate composition during the Quattrocento. Moreover, his eclogues have survived in two different arrangements, thus offering an extraordinary possibility to analyse the humanist poet’s methods of poetry book composition. His influence was strong not only among poets who knew Tribraco personally, like Tito Vespasiano Strozzi and Matteo Maria Boiardo. The real importance and impact of his work is reflected by his influence on poets who became part of the Neo-Latin bucolic canon, first of all Baptista Mantuanus. This study is the first attempt to thoroughly analyse the structure of both eclogue collections, as well as Tribraco’s relation to classical and medieval pastoral poetry.
The paper deals with the strategies of using the proper names, intertextuality and allegory in the genre of neolatin bucolic poetry with special regards to Boccaccio’s eclogue Faunus. The study examines the possibilities of using the ancient code as an intertextual necromancy, the position of ego and identity in the poem, the tension between acustic and visual elements. The meaning or association-basis of the given name (mask) has special effect on the enrichment of the poetical imaginary, while the name also influences the context and the global allegorical level of the poem. The poet often uses pseudoetimological, mitological or historical approaches in the levelling of the poem, which is the part of his selfcanonisation strategies, while the genre of eclogue seems to be the mouthpiece of power.
Vergil’s Eclogues, despite belonging to the bucolic genre and being largely modelled on Theocritus’ Idylls, bear clear marks of cosmic inspiration; these emerge from time to time, now in one poem, next in another, issuing ideas and images apparently inconsistent with the pastoral world: this happens especially in the three central Eclogues. Non-pastoral ideas and images often refer to philosophical or mythological themes, possibly coming either from poets with a cosmic vein (such as Hesiod and Lucretius), or from philosophic schools dealing with cosmogony (such as Orphism and Stoicism). Vergil develops these themes in innovative ways. This broadening of perspective concerns the power of song that seduces and dominates nature (with remarkable self-reflexive implications), the human desire to interact with the gods (even to enter their realm and identify with them through apotheosis), and the longing for purification and rebirth, hand-in-hand with the universal aspiration for peace and happiness.
Drawing on established connections between Roman identity and an agricultural landscape, this paper examines how the imagery of disrupted pastoral and agrarian landscapes and characters represent the effects of civil war on the Roman people in Vergil’s Aeneid and Lucan’s Bellum Civile. While disturbance and turmoil are already a part of the natural landscape in Vergil’s Eclogues and Georgics, in epic, a genre that concerns itself with how empire and imperial power mediate Roman identity, the displacement of shepherds and agriculture partially redefines Roman identity in militaristic terms. Vergil’s pastoral characters, written into military roles as civic landscapes displace agrarian ones in the Aeneid, survive but fail to find a place in Lucan’s ruined and desolate Pharsalian landscape in the Bellum Civile. There, the broken natural landscape, unfit for agriculture, pastoralism, or trade, mirrors the redefinition of what is “Roman” and the occlusion of Rome’s link to an idealized bucolic past.