Pastoral poetry was probably the creation of the Hellenistic poet Theocritus, and he was certainly its most distinguished exponent in Greek. Vergil not only transposed the spirit of Greek pastoral into an Italian setting, blending details from the life of his native countryside into the subsequent history of the genre. On publication the Eclogues won immediate acclaim and Vergil's reputation as a major poet was established. In this edition Robert Coleman describes the earlier pastoral tradition, sets Vergil's poems in historical perspective and evaluates the poet's distinctive contribution to the genre. In the commentary difficulties of interpretation are elucidated. Theocritean influences are examined in detail and points of interest in the language, style and subject-matter discussed. This is the fullest edition of the Eclogues to have appeared in any language and the first in English since the end of the nineteenth century. It is intended primarily for university students and sixth-formers but will be valuable to anyone interested in Latin poetry and the development of the pastoral genre.
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adjective Alexis allusion Amaryllis Amor Amyntas Apollo Arcadian Arcady associated atque Bion Callim Callimachus carmina Catullus colloquial colour context contrast Corydon countryside Damoetas Daphnis dative diaeresis divine echoes Eclogues elegiac epithet Galatea Gallus genre goatherd goats Golden Age Greek haec herba herdsmen Hesiod Hesperos idyllic implied ipse landscape Latin lover Lucr Lucretius Lycidas Lycoris Maenalus Meleager Meliboeus Menalcas metonymy metrical mihi Moeris Mopsus Muses normal noun nunc nymphs omnia Orpheus pastoral pastoral myth pause pecori perhaps phrase Phyllis Plin poem poet poetry Pollio Polyphemus preceding probably Prop puer quae quid quod quoque recalls reference rustic saepe sense Servius shepherd Silenus siluae singing song suggests tamen tantum themes Theocritean Theocritus Thyrsis tibi tion Tityrus tradition uersus uiridis umbra Varus verb Vergil word