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Exemplary Comparison from Homer to Petrarch


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The book is a study of comparison and identification with exemplary figures drawn from myth, history and historical legend, the Bible, the authorial canon, and literary tradition, from Homer to the interrelated branches of the medieval European vernacular lyric up to the end of the fourteenth century. The first half treats Homer, Virgil, Latin poets from Catullus to Ovid, and late and medieval Latin poets. The second half discusses the troubadour lyric, including Italian and Catalan poets who wrote in the language of the troubadours, the trouvère lyric, the German lyric, and the Sicilian and Italian lyric up to Petrarch. The languages covered are thus classical Greek, classical, post-classical and medieval Latin, Occitan/Old Provençal, Old Frencieval German and Italian.Representative examples of comparison and identification are given in the original language, followed by translation and textual and literary analysis.

OLIVE SAYCE is Emeritus Fellow and Tutor in Modern Languages, Somerville College, Oxford.


The range of texts treated and the meticulous way in which these questions are pursued are impressive. MLR
A valuable contribution to the study of biblical and other exemplary characters. INTERNATIONAL REVIEW OF BIBLICAL STUDIES


First Published: 21 Feb 2008
13 Digit ISBN: 9781843840992
Pages: 422
Size: 23.4 x 15.6
Binding: Hardback
Imprint: D.S.Brewer

Details updated on 05 Oct 2015


  • 1  Introduction
  • 2  Homer: The Iliad and the Odyssey
  • 3  Virgil: The Aeneid
  • 4  Latin Poets from Catullus to Ovid
  • 5  Latin Poets from Antiquity to the Middle Ages
  • 6  The Troubadour Poets
  • 7  The Trouvère Poets
  • 8  The German Poets
  • 9  The Sicilian and Italian Poets
  • 10  Conclusion
  • 11  Bibliography
  • 12  Glossary of Technical Terms
  • 13  Index of Poets and Works
  • 14  Index of Proper Names
  • 15  General Index