This is an introduction to the ancient genre of epigram, short poems literally written or inscribed 'on' an object or figuratively 'on' a topic. The authors set out what epigram means and why it matters, exploring its roots in inscriptions on stone and its literary flourishing in the Hellenistic world after Alexander. They trace its migration from Greece to Rome, where its most famous exponent was Martial, and consider the continuation of Greek epigram under the Roman empire in the so-called 'Second Sophistic'. The final chapter shows how Greek epigram achieved new importance in the nineteenth century as raw material for stories about the classical past.
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Aeschines Agathias ancient ancient Greece Anthology's antiquity Arkhinos Asclepiades Athenian Ausonius Bing and Bruss Bruttians Callimachus Catullus century bce Cephalas chapter Charicles classical collection context culture dead dedication discussion early ecphrasis edition elegiac elegy epic epigrammatist epitaph example famous funerary epigram Garland genre Greece Greek Anthology Greek epigram Gutzwiller 1998 Hadrian Hellenic Hellenistic Hellenistic epigram Herodotus hetaira hexameter Homeric inscribed epigrams inscription Kharidas kleos later Latin epigram Leonidas literary epigram Mackail Martial Meleager Meleager's Milan papyrus modern monument Myron's Cow Nicarchus Nisbet Nossis original passer-by Peisistratus perhaps Petrovic 2007b Phalaecus Philaenis Philodemus Phrasikleia poem poet poetic poetry Posidippus reader reception reference Roman Rome scholars Second Sophistic sense sexual Sider Simonides skoptic epigram statue stone suggests surviving Svenbro Symonds symposium sympotic theme Thucydides tradition translation verb verse Victorian wine words writing