Martial: Select Epigrams
Despite his enduring popularity, Martial has recently suffered from serious critical neglect. The present work is the first edition of selections from Martial to be published for decades, and includes a fully representative selection of the oeuvre of the poet, who has often been criticised, unfairly, the authors argue, for obscenity and flattery of the Emperor Domitian. The epigrams included in the selection are organised under various heads, e.g. Martial and poetry, sexual mores, satirical pieces. A very full introduction deals with such topics as the prejudices and predilections of his audience which conditioned Martial's choice of subject matter, Martial's language, the structure and style of the epigrams, the epigrammatic tradition and Martial's creative engagement with it. The detailed commentary is suitable for use with undergraduates and is distinguished by its focus on social history as well as literary interpretation.
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