Martial Book XIII: The Xenia. Book with introduction and commentary

Martial Book XIII: The Xenia. Book with introduction and commentary

Farouk Grewing , Harvard University. , -koeln.de

Investigation on Martial is developing continuously lately. The commentary under overview here is T.J. Leary’s (henceforth: L.’s) next one on a manuscript of Martial’s, an achievement at this point paired only by Peter Howell, just who got both Books I and V under their wings. We ought to feel indebted to L. for having started so painstaking an activity as generating accessible both maybe more underestimated and ignored products of Martial, which, very first the Apophoreta (L.’s commentary of six years ago are henceforth described as a€?L. 1996′) nowadays the Xenia. These two courses, that essentially feature two-line poems only, pose a specific challenge into the scholar and common audience alike.

I might need certainly to apologize for your excessive period of this review, but because of the complex characteristics of this Xenia as well as the fact that however not enough Latinists be seemingly happy to view this range (or perhaps the Apophoreta, even) as an intricate piece of literary works, which deserves to be interpreted appropriately, they felt rationalized to indicate the multi-layered (esp. literary) aspects associated with it and study about what extent this new discourse provides insight and provides help for potential investigations.

Overview by

L.’s Introduction (pp. 1-21), perhaps not the smallest amount of because of the comparable nature with this specific types of epigram range, essentially contains the same parts as his 1996 Apophoreta, so, not surprisingly adequate, L. (with many afterthoughts) draws many content from his very own run aforementioned and from their part a€?Martial’s Early Saturnalian Versea€? in my own Toto notus in orbe (Stuttgart 1998).

Part (i) relates to the publication’s concept, which such as the among the many Apophoreta could be the writer’s own; and so are that from the average person products tituli (pp. 1-3, 37, 47). Resource is made to using the expression a€?xenion’ in literature, specifically Roman (the majority of popular, obviously, Plin. epist. 6.). Discrepancies in grammatical amounts between a poem’s lemma and its own genuine traces often tends to be described simply (metrical explanations; generalizing singular vs. plural lemma, etc.; start to see the research on p. 58).

Section (ii) temporarily summarizes basic information about the Roman Saturnalia (origins, function, permit, lotteries and gift suggestions); what’s more, it touches upon the sociological size of the event and gift-giving in the context of the exhibitions of patronage (p. 7, discover furthermore 15). 1 Lucian’s Saturnalia (mentioned by L., p. 6; cf. p. 101), particularly the a€?Kronosolon’ area (ch. 10-18), give further insight into festival-bound gift-exchange, some of which is covered by L. 2

Section (iii), throughout the arrangement and structure of book, are somewhat smaller as compared to exact same chapter in L.’s Apophoreta, since manuscripts from inside the Xenia evidently cannot create us raise a lot of questions about misplaced things and odd lacunae – thankfully therefore, because a repair of this a€?original’ purchase might have been even more challenging compared to the fact of guide XIV, in which editors find some help from the writer’s statement at 14.1.5 regarding the concept of alternating pairs (discover L. 1996, pp. 13-21). In-book XIII, the rich-poor comparison is not a structural device; but, a€?rich’ and a€?poor’ were unexpected top features of gift suggestions, e.g. in stuff 6, 27, 76, 106, and, implicitly, 45 and 103 (cf. pp. 51-52 and 96-97). Either way, when you look at the Xenia, we seem to be confronted with singular tiny distortion from the order, which, at 98-99, where Lindsay’s transposition of Schneidewin’s 99-98 permits us to look at 99-100 as a mini-unit (see pp. 11 and 162-164). L. offers a neat and comprehensive a review of the book’s plan, with focus being settled with the starting area, various groupings and sub-groupings, plus to its closure. 3 talking about which, it is certainly true that, as L. shows (pp. 11 and 194), the publication’s finally product (127, Coronae roseae) significantly alerts the conclusion the collection by (a) addressing the emperor (such as the basic item, 4, after the multiple proem!), and (b) by recalling the notion of a€?garlands’ of epigrams (like ones by Philip and Meleager), hence Martial thus dedicates the complete book toward princeps (cf. 8.82). Inside the conversation within this poem, L. usefully describes the big event and meaning of rose garlands while the a€?unseasonal’ luxury of wintertime flowers in Rome. Inter alia, the guy relates to Horace, c. 1.38, whose earliest stanza probably deserves extra interest than L. acknowledges: Persicos odi, puer, equipment, / displicent nexae philyra, coronae, / mitte sectari, rosa quo locorum / sera moretur. D. Fowler, in his a€?us 24 , pp. 31-58, right here: 55), keeps noticed that Horace’s poem like Martial’s covers a reference to roses and, again like Martial’s, shuts a novel – plus, you need to create, the a€?garland motif’. Is this a mere coincidence? Anyway, some mention of the the fast raising research on a€?closure’ could have been with the purpose. 4