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Translation as MusePoetic Translation in Catullus's Rome$
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Elizabeth Marie Young

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780226279916

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226280080.001.0001

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Catullus 4 and the Demographics of Late-Republican Alexandrianism

Catullus 4 and the Demographics of Late-Republican Alexandrianism

(p.89) 3 Catullus 4 and the Demographics of Late-Republican Alexandrianism
Translation as Muse

Elizabeth Marie Young

University of Chicago Press

The first part of the third chapter performs a reading of Catullus 4 (the phaselus poem) that highlights the vital role that Greek-speaking immigrants from Bithynia and elsewhere in Asia Minor, many of them slaves or freedmen like Parthenius of Nicaea, played in mediating Roman access to the intractable texts they sought to recreate in Latin. The chapter’s second half considers the identity of the translators themselves who, in this era, hailed disproportionately from Transpadane Gaul. I discuss this phenomenon via the pseudo-Vergilian Catalepton 10, an ancient parody of Catullus 4 that uses its derisive tale of a Gallic muleteer to mock the social ascension of two great literary Transpadanes, Catullus and Vergil.

Keywords:   Catullus 4, Phaselus, Bithynia, slaves, freedmen, Parthenius of Nicea, Asia Minor, Transpadane Gaul, Catalepton, Vergil

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