Saturday, November 27, 2021

M/M: Polyptoton: Anacreon fr. 359

Polyptoton is a rhetorical device where the same word is used throughout a passage, but in various noun cases. In this fragment of Anacreon, the poem's subject Kleoboulos / Cleoboulus is used in the genitive, dative, and accusative case. 

Κλουβέλου μεν έγωγή ερεώ

Κλευβέλω δ έπι μαίνομαι

Κλεύβαλον δε διοσκεώ.


Cleobouli amore uror!

Cleoboulus me furit!

Cleoboulem contueor!

 --Anacreon fr.359; translated into Latin by K. Masters 

I yearn for Kleoboulos!

I’m crazy about Kleoboulos!

I gaze upon Kleoboulos!




Name:  Anacreon

Date:  582 – 485 BCE

Works:  [fragments]



Region 1: Peninsular Italy; Region 2: Western Europe; Region 3: Western Coast of Africa; Region 4: Egypt and Eastern Mediterranean; Region 5: Greece and the Balkans



 Anacreon was a Greek poet who lived during the 6th century BCE. He was born in Teos (modern Turkey) during a period of intense conflict between the Ionian and Persian forces, and did not remain in his homeland for long. Sources indicate that he found success and fame for his poetry in Samos and Athens, but little is known about his life beyond anecdotes written hundreds of years after his death.  His poetry was exceedingly popular, to the extent that an entire genre of poetry was dedicated to his style of writing; the Anacreonta are a collection of poems written in imitation of his writing style composed by Greek authors throughout the centuries. Despite Anacreon’s immense popularity and influence on literature, only fragments remain of his poetry today.


ARCHAIC: (through 6th c. BCE); GOLDEN AGE: (5th - 4th c. BCE); HELLENISTIC: (4th c. BCE - 1st c. BCE); ROMAN: (1st c. BCE - 4th c. CE); POST CONSTANTINOPLE: (4th c. CE - 8th c. CE); BYZANTINE: (post 8th c CE)

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