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A Companion to Persius and Juvenal by Susanna Braund, Josiah Osgood

By Susanna Braund, Josiah Osgood

A significant other to Persius and Juvenal breaks new floor in its in-depth specialize in either authors as "satiric successors"; distinctive person contributions recommend unique views on their paintings, and supply an in-depth exploration of Persius' and Juvenal's afterlives.

  • Provides targeted and up to date tips at the texts and contexts of Persius and Juvenal
  • Offers big dialogue of the reception of either authors, reflecting essentially the most leading edge paintings being performed in modern Classics
  • Contains an intensive exploration of Persius' and Juvenal's afterlives

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Extra info for A Companion to Persius and Juvenal

Sample text

1 makes it clear that the central paradox of satire is this: while it purports to exist for a moral purpose (we heard plenty about this from Horace in Book 1), it yet seems driven, equally if not at times exclusively, by aesthetic concerns. The moral, selfrighteous aspect is what always gets satirists into trouble. As Trebatius says at lines 21–23, a poet would be better off writing mediocre epic than attacking local miscreants with invective (tristi . . uersu) for their petty vices, because this just makes everyone afraid of satirists (sibi quisque timet).

In a classic posture blending selfeffacement and self-aggrandizement, he concedes his inferiority to the great Lucilius, but boasts that he too has consorted with the great (me cum magnis uixisse). His real audience, then – the one he needs to be most concerned about – is a small circle of “great men,” analogous to Laelius and Scipio. They will understand what satire is, they will have virtue on their side, and they will have no problem with Horace’s public abuse of people who deserve it. Their response – the proper one – will be laughter and admiration at his poetic ingenium, as much as, if not more than, the self-righteousness that is put forward as the point of satire.

2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd. Published 2012 by Blackwell Publishing Ltd. 20 Persius and Juvenal: Texts and Contexts audience, insisting on truth-claims that may not be true, or that even if true may have no actual relevance to the success of the work as satire. The history of Roman satire prior to Persius and Juvenal, which will be the concern of this chapter, can be written in a variety of ways, but at the most fundamental level it is a story of poets continually calibrating the literary demands of the genre to suit contemporary cultural and political conditions.

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