Semi-public Narration in Apollonius' Argonautica
Ancient epic narrators can be termed "semi-public" because they address both public and private audiences. Public audiences exist outside the fictional context of the story, and private audiences exist within it. The narrator of Homer's Iliad, for instance, addresses both the listeners and readers of the poem, and private narratees such as the character Patroklos. In Apollonius' Argonautica, the narrator's semi-public nature is rather extraordinary. This is because the narrator is actually influenced by demands that the private narratees impose on him, and even by things that these narratees say to him. As a result, the narrator's own voice often resembles the voices of his characters, and the poem can, at times, seem like a dialogue between the two parties. In considering this apparent dialogue, Semi-Public Narration in Apollonius' Argonautica resolves a number of the serious interpretative difficulties with which scholars of the Argonautica have long been engaged.
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Achilles addresses Aietes Aiolidai Alkinoos anger Ankaios Aphrodite Aphrodite's Apollo Apollonian narrator Apollonius Apsyrtos Argonautica Argonauts Argos argues that Apollonius asks the Muses Athamas Athena Augeias Beye called Callimachus Chapter charm Medea cited context discussion divine epic Erato Eros erotic Euphemos explains Frankel Fusillo goddess gods Golden Fleece Gummert Hera Hera's Herakles Homeric human sources Hunter Hylas Hypsipyle Idmon instance interpreters Jason and Medea Kolchians Kolchis Lemnian Lemnian prehistory Lemnian women Lemnos lolkian lolkos Medea's desire Medea's love monologue moreover mortal motivated Muses narrative narrator asks narrator mentions narrator relates narrator tells narrator's Nymph Odysseus oracle oracular response Orchomenos ou8e passages Pelias Phaiakian Phineus Phrixids Phrixos Pietsch poem Polyphemos prehistory private narrators proem proem to Book provides public narrator rator reader refers relative clause role sacrificial offerings says Schol speak speech statement Symplegades Thetis Thynia Tiphys tradition verb verses Vian voyage wrath Zeus