Skip to main content

Alcaeus of Messene, Philip V, and Rome

  • F. W. Walbank (a1)

From what has already been said it will be clear that Alcaeus of Messene, like the anonymous author of Anth. Pal. xvi. 6, was a supporter of Philip V at least until 201 B.C., that is, until the Second Macedonian War. The view that his breach with Philip followed the Messenian events of 215–214 has, however, been so frequently upheld that it deserves consideration. It appears to be based on one or more of the following assumptions. Philip's activities in Messene resulted in driving that state into the Aetolo-Spartan camp: Alcaeus, as a loyal Messenian, will have followed the official Messenian policy. Further, Alcaeus wrote a poem (Anth. Pal. ix. 519) accusing Philip of poisoning his guests: this is to be connected with the death of Aratus, in which the Achaean himself professed to see the hand of Philip. Finally, it is assumed that Alcaeus had already started his literary career at the time of the Messenian events of 215–214, since he has left an epigram celebrating the threefold victory at the Isthmus of the famous Cleitomachus of Thebes, whose floruit, it is claimed, was 216–212 (Anth. Pal. ix. 588). None of these arguments is really cogent: a very good case can be, and has been, made out for dating Cleitomachus’ success towards the end of the third century; the poisoning referred to is undoubtedly that of Callias and Epicrates (cf. Anth. Pal. xi. 12) which, being itself undated, cannot be used as a chronological index; and politically Alcaeus, as we shall see, was far from being an orthodox Messenian.

Hide All

page 1 note 1 Cf. Knaack, ap. Susemihl, op. cit. ii. 545, n. 136; Bergk, , Philol xxxii, 1873, 678; Poet. Lyr. graec 4 iii. 196. Those who regard Anth. Pal. ix. 518 as ironical or hostile (see CQ, xxxvi, p. 134, n. 4) usually deny that Alcaeus was ever a supporter of Philip.

page 1 note 2 So Stadtmüller, , ed. Teubner, , ad ix. 518. Aratus’ death was in 213. In Philip V, 79, n. 2, I suggested (wrongly, I believe now) a connexion with the murder of Chariteles of Cyparissia (Livy (Pol.), xxxii. 21, 23).

page 1 note 3 Cf. Knaack, ap. Susemihl, op. cit. ii. 545, n. 136.

page 1 note 4 See Wunderer, C., Philol. lvii, 1898, 17; ‘Nachtrag’, ibid. 649.

page 1 note 5 Anth. Pal. xi. 12. 1 is referred to by Schol. B, commenting on Anth. Pal. ix. 519; see Stadtmüller, ad loc.

page 1 note 6 Two other supposed pieces of evidence must be mentioned. Many scholars have seen in Kaibel, , Epig. ex lap. coll. 790(from Dyme; = Hiller, v. Gaertringen's, Hist. griech. epig. 105) a work of Alcaeus (e.g. Kaibel, ad loc.; Knaack, ap. Susemihl, op. cit. ii. 545, n. 135; Reitzenstein, P-W, s.v. ‘Alkaios (13)’, col. 1506; Friedländer, , AJPh, lxiii, 1942, 82): but the attribution is uncertain, and, as Seeliger, points out (op. cit. 15, n. 16), it can merely show that Alcaeus may have been a supporter of Philip when it was written. Since, moreover, the dedication mentioned may be either before or after the restoration of Dyme (cf. Livy (Pol.), xxxii. 22. 10), the poem is useless for chronology. Another epigram by Alcaeus, (Anth. Pal. vii. 412) deals with the death of Pylades, the citharoedus; but this merely proves that Alcaeus was writing after Philopoemen's second strategia (206–205: cf. Niccolini, G., La confederazione achea (1914), 286–7; Aymard, A., Les premiers rapports de Rome et de la confédération achaïenne (198–189 av. J.-C.) (1938), 43, n. 64), when Pylades made an appearance.

page 2 note 1 The version in the Palatine Anthology omits lines 3–4, which were restored from Plutarch by Brunck and Hecker.

page 2 note 2 The Macedonian dead remained ἄθαπτοι until Philip of Megalopolis buried them in 191 (cf. Philip V, 200, n. 4); Plutarch's remarks and the argument adduced below suggest, however, that the epigram was written very soon after the battle.

page 2 note 3 Plut, . Flam. 9. 3 (= Anth. Pal. xvi. 26 B); the mock epitaph, Anth. Pal. ix. 520, is probably also the work of Philip. Plutarch's words (9. 2) are: μ⋯λλον ἠν⋯α τ⋯ν Τ⋯τον ⋯ τ⋯ν Π⋯λιππον.

page 2 note 4 plut, Flam. 9. 1: ⋯στε κα⋯ γρ⋯πεσθαι κα⋯ ᾄδεσθαι προτ⋯ρους ⋯κε⋯νους; ὑπ⋯ ποιητ⋯ν κα⋯ ἰδιωτ⋯ν ὺμνο⋯ντων τ⋯ ⋯ργον Cf. Seeliger, , op. cit. 16; Reitzenstein, P-W, s.v. ‘Alkaios (13)’, vol. 1506; Klotz, A., Rh. Mus. Ixxxiv, 1935, 47; Walbank, , op. cit. 173.

page 2 note 5 Stadtmüller, ad loc., suggests two other possibilities: that lines 3–4 were an insertion by a pro-Aetolian poet or that they were omitted through the error of a scribe at some later date. The latter event is too much of a coincidence to be plausible; and the identity of line 4 with line 2 of Anth. Pal. xvi. 5 is against the former suggestion.

page 2 note 6 So Körte, , op. cit. 400.

page 2 note 7 See Nissen, H., Kritische Untersuch. über die Quellen der vierten u. fünften Dekade des Livius (1863), 280–90.

page 2 note 8 Livy (Pol.), xxxiv. 41. 5–7; 49. 5–7; xxxv. 12. 15; 48. 12; Plut, . Flam. 89.

page 2 note 9 In the six-line version, lines 3–4 are an awkward interruption between the reference to the τρισσα⋯ μυρι⋯δες and the ambiguous comment Ἠμαθ⋯⋯ μ⋯γα π⋯μα, which may now refer either to the loss of the 30,000 (accusative in apposition to the sentence) or to the Latins brought by Titus (accusative in apposition to οὒς). Bowra follows a sound poetic instinct when he gives the epigram in its short form in the Oxford Book of Greek Verse, No. 557, in contrast to Körte, , op. cit. 400 n., who believes that the omission ‘lessened the effectiveness of the poem’.

page 2 note 10 Plut, . Flam. 9. 3: το⋯το ⋯πο⋯ησε μ⋯ν Ἀλκαῖος ⋯πυβρ⋯ζων Πιλ⋯ππῳ κα⋯ τ⋯ν ⋯ριθμ⋯ν τ⋯ν ⋯ποθαν⋯ντων ⋯πιψευσ⋯μενος, λεγ⋯μενον δ⋯ πολλαχο⋯ κα⋯ ὑπ⋯ πολλ⋯ν μ⋯λλον ⋯ν⋯α τ⋯ν τ⋯τον ἢ τ⋯ν Π⋯λιππον. Plutarch does not say that Alcaeus intended to praise the Aetolians.

page 3 note 1 Seeliger, , op. cit. 14; and, following him, Walbank, 74 ‘from his refuge in Aetolia’. Klotz, , Rh. Mus. lxxxiv, 1935, 47, n. 1, would connect Alcaeus’ exaggerated figure of 30,000 Macedonian dead (which also appeared in Valerius Antias as 40,000, and in Claudius as 32,000: cf. Livy, xxxiii. 10. 8) with an Aetolian source; this figure reached the Senate, he assumes, partly through Alcaeus’ epigram and perhaps via an Aetolian embassy. But there is no reason to assume the Romans incapable of exaggerating their victory or that Polybius’ figure of 8,000 (xviii. 27. 6; cf. Livy, xxxiii. 10. 7; Plut, . Flam. 8. 5) was necessarily that of Flamininus.

page 3 note 2 Op. cit. iii. 338, n. 2. See Polyb. xxxii. 2. 4 f. The Alcaeus mentioned is probably the Messenian; cf. Knaack, ap. Susemihl, op. cit. ii. 546, n. 140. When the literary controversy between Isocrates and Alcaeus took place cannot be determined, for it is not known how old the former was when he was sent to Rome a prisoner in 162 B.C. (cf. Niese, , op. cit. iii. 246); Dr. Treves makes the plausible suggestion that Isocrates was ‘a peninsular Greek, who made himself unpopular in the last decade of Philip V, and therefore took refuge at the court of Syria’.

page 3 note 3 The MSS. give this poem twice, once after Anth. Pal. xi. 12; and in its original position it lacks lines 5–6. Hence J.-Ph. D'Orville's theory that there were two editions, only the second of which had the two last lines; this edition was subsequent to the murder of Callias and Epicrates, and included the present reading of line 1, which hitherto read: π⋯ομαι, Ἕλληνες, πουλὺ πλ⋯ον κτλ. Ἕλληνες is the reading of P1, and is accepted by Reitzenstein, , Epigramm u. Skolion (1893), 90, n. 3, who thinks that the appeal to the Greeks to rise against Philip ‘scheint mir hier passend: die zweite Lesart ὦ Ληναῖε matt’. But this appeal to the Greeks to rise appears to exist only in Reitzenstein's imagination.—There is no reason to accept the suggestion of knaack, ap. Susemihl, op. cit. ii. 545, n. 136, that lines 5–6 are to be placed before lines 3–4.

page 4 note 1 Op. cit. 87; cf. Korte, , op. cit. 361.

page 4 note 2 An example from Alcaeus is Anth. Pal. vii. 1 (on Homer buried on Ios).

page 4 note 3 This accusation was constantly made against Philip, often where we know it to be untrue. His other alleged victims included the two Arati (Polyb. viii. 12. 2–8; Plut, . Arat. 52. 1; 54. 2–3; Pausan. ii. 9. 4), Chariteles of Cyparissia (Livy (Pol.), xxxii. 21. 23), Eurycleides and Micion of Athens (Pausan. ii. 9. 4; cf. Treves, , Les ét. class. ix, 1940, 147–9), Cassander, the epistates of Maronea (Polyb. xxii. 14. 2–6), and Philip's own son Demetrius, (full references in Philip V, 252); see Philip V, 124, n. 6, also for references to the alleged attempt to murder Philopoemen. That the tradition had a contemporary origin and some basis in fact is to be seen from Flamininus’ taunt at the conference in Locris (Plut, . Flam. 17. 2; Moral. 197 A; Polyb. xviii. 7. 6); it appears in its exaggerated form in Pausan. vii. 7. 15 and Diod. xxviii. 3 (Philip SO uncontrolled ⋯ν ταῖς εὐτυχ⋯αις, ⋯στε τοὺς μ⋯ν π⋯λους ⋯κρ⋯τως ⋯ποσπ⋯ξαι!).

page 4 note 4 Cf. Athen. xi. 473 A for Hedylus’ poem ‘π⋯νωμεν κτλ’ or Anth. Pal. xii. 50: πῖν’ Ἀσκληπι⋯δη (also Hedylus).

page 4 note 5 Od. ix. 290: ⋯κ δ’ ⋯γκ⋯παλος χαμ⋯δις ῥ⋯ε, δε⋯ε δ⋯ γαῖαν. Cf. Eur, . Cyc. 402.

page 4 note 6 The idea is reminiscent of Theognis, 349: τ⋯ν εῘη μ⋯λαν α⋯μα πιεῖν. His bitterness was likely to appeal to Alcaeus. The theme quickly grew into the tradition about Philip; cf. Polyb. vii. 13. 7: Philip like a werewolf καθ⋯περ ἂν ⋯γγευσ⋯μενος α⋯ματος ⋯νθρωπε⋯ου. Very relevant to this poem are the observations of Kircher, K., Die sakrale Bedeutung des Weines im Altertum (1910), 74 f., on the close connexion in primitive thought between blood and wine, and the custom among many peoples of drinking the blood of one's enemy (e.g. Thracians (Amm. Marcell. 27. 4); Scythians (Herod, iv. 65)). Kircher's work brings out the sacral origins of the symposium, which Philip's poisonings had outraged.

page 4 note 7 Od. xxi. 295–8:

οἶνος κα⋯ Κ⋯νοαυρον, ⋯γακλυτ⋯ν Eὺρυτ⋯ωνα,

ἄασ’ ⋯ν⋯ μεγ⋯ρῳ μεγαθ⋯μου Πειριθ⋯οιο,

⋯ς Λαπ⋯θας ⋯λθ⋯νθ'· ⋯ δ’ ⋯πε⋯ πρ⋯νας ἂασεν οἴνῳ,

μαιν⋯μενος κ⋯κ’ ἒρεξε δ⋯μον κ⋯τα Πειριθ⋯οιο.

page 4 note 8 Anth. Pal. vii. 725; Virgil imitated it, Catalept. xi. 1–4 (and cf. Georg. ii. 455). Οἶνος κα⋯ Κ⋯νταυρον also occurs in Anth. Pal. xi. 1, line 3 (by Nicarchus).

page 5 note 1 de la Rochette, S. Chardon, Mélanges de critique et de philologie, ii (1812), 295–8; he assumes both names to be invented, as being ‘distingué par le courage et la force’ and so suitable for men who were being compared with a Centaur. This seems to me somewhat farfetched and moreover misses the real point of Alcaeus’ epigram.

page 5 note 2 For the Cyclops identification see Stadtmüller, ad loc.

page 5 note 3 Cf. for instance Od. ix. 370: τ⋯ δ⋯ τοι ξειν⋯ιοο ἔσται.

page 5 note 4 Cf. the legend of Apollo and Marsyas.

page 5 note 5 On Philip's alleged murders see above, p. 4, n. 3; on his licentiousness and heavy drinking, cf. Polyb. xxv. 3. 7 (contrast with Perseus); Polyb. x. 26; Livy (Pol.), xxvii. 31; xxxii. 21. 24; Plut, . Moral. 760 A; Arat. 51. 2–3 (behaviour at Argos in 209, and rape of Polycrateia of Argos); Livy (Pol.), xxxvii. 7. 8–12 (Ti. Gracchus finds him drunk at Pella).

page 5 note 6 On this see Tarn, , JHS, liii, 1933, 61; Edson, , Harv. Stud. xlv, 1934, 216–17; Dow and Edson, ibid, xlviii, 1937, 159, n. 3; Aymard, , REA, xxxix, 1937, 19, n. 7; Premiers rapports, 54, n. 30; Walbank, , op. cit. 258, n. 3. The relevant texts are Polyb. v. 10. 10; Livy (Pol.), xxvii. 30. 9; xxxii. 22. 11; Pausan. vii. 7. 5; Photius, , Bibl. 176, p. 121 a, 35(= Fr. gr. Hist. 115 T. 31); IG 2 iv. 1, No. 590, line 5 (if one accepts Wilhelm's restoration, Wien. Anz. Iviii, 1921, 73: α⋯νετ⋯ν Ἑλλ⋯νων ⋯γ[εμ⋯ν’ Ἀργε⋯δαν]); cf. also Plut, . Aem. Paull. 12. 9 f; Zonaras, ix. 24 A, C; Propert. iv. 11. 39; Ital, Sil.. Punica, xv. 291–2; Anth. Pal. vii. 238 (if the last couplet refers to Philip V and not Alexander the Great). Livy (Pol.), xlv. 7. 3, on the other hand, appears to draw a contrast between Philip II and Alexander and Perseus’ ancestors quos sanguine et genere contingebat.

page 5 note 7 Demosthenes’ famous description of Philip II's πιλοπραγμοσ⋯νη (Olynth. i. 17; cf. Macurdy, G., AJPh, xlviii, 1927, 203; Treves, , Nuova riv. storic. xxii, 1938, 13 f.) could be applied unchanged to Philip V.

page 5 note 8 I am glad to note that this link with Philip II was also observed by Momigliano, , JRS, xxxii, 1942, 57, to whom I owe the reference to Didymus in the next note.

page 5 note 9 Whether of Euripides or Antiphanes (Kock, ii. 64, 131–3) is not stated. Didymus (ed. Diels-Schubart), 12. 55; cf. Fr. gr. Hist. 76 F. 36 (Duris); 135–6 F. 17 (Marsyas). See Treves, , Athen. xiii, 1935, 51.

page 5 note 10 Ael, . V.H. xii. 43; cf. Plut, . Quaest. convin. ii. 1. 9. 633 C; Lucian, , Macrob. 11; Plut, . Sert. 1. 8–9 (mentioning Philip II too).

page 6 note 1 Quoted by Polyb. viii. 9. 13 (Fr. gr. Hist. 115 F. 225).

page 6 note 2 The term ‘Centaur’ seems further to have carried overtones of obscene insult, perhaps not inappropriate to Philip's reputation as a philanderer: cf. Eustath., p. 528. 43; p. 1910. 10: ⋯τι δ⋯ κα⋯ τ⋯ γυναικεῖον μ⋯ριον δηλον ⋯ Κ⋯νταυρος, δηλο⋯οιν ο⋯ παλαιοἰ, π⋯ροντες κα⋯ χρ⋯σιν Θεοπ⋯μπου (i.e. the fourth-century comic poet, fr. 89) εἰς το⋯το. πικρ⋯τερον δ⋯ το⋯του εἰς σκ⋯μμα τ⋯ εἰρ⋯σθαι κ⋯νταυρον, ὃς κεντεῖ ὃρρον τ⋯ν παρ⋯ τῷ κομικἰ. Photius (ed. Naber), p. 334, has also the first of Eustathius’ definitions; and for the second cf. Hesych. (ed. Schmidt) 2200, 26: Κ⋯νταυροι. λῃστα⋯. κα⋯ οἱ Aἰνι⋯νες. κα⋯ οἱ παδεραστα⋯, ⋯π⋯ το⋯ ⋯ρρου. (⋯ρρος is here used as equivalent to the obscene sense of τα⋯ρος.)

page 6 note 3 This hypothesis is confirmed by Pausan. vii. 7. 5 (a passage of non-Polybian origin), which connects Philip's pride in Philip II with his poisoning triumphs; cf. Polyb. viii. 8. 4, which by implication contrasts the two Philips to the advantage of the son of Amyntas.

page 6 note 4 It may appear in Ennius. A fragment preserved by Priscian from the ninth book of the Annales is an almost direct translation of Od. ix. 296 f., used as a simile:

Cyclopis venter velut olim turserat alte

carnibus humanis distentus.

(Ann. ix. 14 (v. 321) Vahlen = Diehl,

Poet. ram. vet. 117 = Steuart, ix, fr. 12)

The contents of Book IX are uncertain: Vahlen (Ennianae poesis reliquiae 2 (1928), pp. cxc–cxcii) suggests that it dealt with the end of the Second Punic War, and MissSteuart, E. M. (The Annals of Q. Ennius (1925), 181) with the aristeia of Scipio. Certainly Book X introduces the Second War with Philip, apparently as a new topic (cf. Vahlen, x. 1 (v. 326) = Diehl, 118):

Insece, Musa, manu Romanorum induperator quod quisque in bello gessit cum rege Philippo.

It would, however, be rash, even in view of Livy's virtual silence concerning Macedon between the Peace of Phoenice and the Second Macedonian War, to rule out the possibility that Book IX contained a transitional passage, dealing with the outrages committed by Philip, and containing this Homeric simile in such a context. (The comparison is specifically to ‘Cyclopis venter distentus’; but this may be no more than a poetical version of ‘Cyclops ventre distento’, just as in Juvenal, iv. 107: ‘Montani quoque venter adest abdomine tardus’ the meaning is ‘Montanus adest, homo ventriosus’ as the words ‘abdomine tardus’ show.) This hypothesis is to some extent strengthened if one accepts the plausible suggestion of ProfessorWade-Gery, (ap. Momigliano, JRS, xxxii, 1942, 54, n. 5) that Ennius’ famous epitaph on Scipio (Vahlen, Varia, 21ss = Diehl, 392) is a definite reply to Anth. Pal. xvi. 6 and to some extent ix. 518; here again Ennius would show himself influenced by contemporary Greek propagandist literature. In the present instance, Ennius’ use of the simile would go to show that Alcaeus’ taunt had passed into popular currency, in the same way as his epigram on Philip's defeat at Cynoscephalae. Ennius might have heard it at Rome from soldiers back from the Second Macedonian War, or even during his own visit to Ambracia with Q. Fulvius Nobilior in 189 (Cicero, , Tusc. i. 2). It may thus have played an important part in helping to shape the anti-Macedonian version of Philip's career, which is of course the one that has survived.

page 6 note 5 So Dübner and Paton in the Didot and Loeb editions.

page 7 note 1 For Callias, of Nisyros, cf. IG xii. 3. 91 (= Syll.3 572 = Schroeter, , De regum hellenisticorum episiulis (1932), 80, No. 33); suggested tentatively by Momigliano, , JRS, xxxii, 1942, 54, n. 9, and by Dr. Treves, privately (contra, Schoch, P-W, s.v. ‘Kallias (14 a and b)’, Suppl.-B. iv, col. 856); DrTreves, also suggests the identification with the Delian Callias as an alternative (cf. IG xi. 4. 750 (= Syll.3 576)), and that of Epicrates with the Rhodian, (cf. IG xi. 4. 751 = Syll.3 582; Livy (Pol.), xxxvii. 13. 11).

page 7 note 2 Livy (Pol.), xxxii. 21; particularly § 21 f. Aristaenus is not giving a full catalogue of Philip's crimes, but since he mentions Chariteles of Cyparissia, the plundering of Messene, and the deaths of the Arati, it is likely that if Epicrates and Callias had been murdered within the period since 201 he would not have omitted them.

page 7 note 3 Philip V, 163 f.

page 7 note 4 DrTreves, has suggested to me privately that the adjective ⋯ταiota;ρε⋯οιο in line 5 of Anth. Pal. ix. 519 has a technical sense, and that Epicrates and Callias were Greeks whom Philip had enrolled among his ⋯ταῖροι or φ⋯λοι. If that is so, their murder may be hinted at in Flamininus’ taunt at the Locrian conference (see above, p. 4, n. 3) that Philip had murdered the most reliable of his φ⋯λοι in that case, of course, their deaths preceded the compact with Nabis, and their breach with Philip may reflect a Greek reaction to the new Roman προα⋯ρεσις, first clearly formulated at Antigoneia in spring 198 (Philip V, 151–2). But was ⋯ταῖρος ever used in the technical sense at Philip V's court?

page 7 note 5 Barber, E. A., CAH, vii. 269.

page 8 note 1 It may also be accounted evidence for the view that Polybius gives a biased and exaggerated version of Philip's part in the troubles; that there were writers who justified or even exonerated Philip is clear from Polybius’ censure (viii. 8. 4), and his contrast of these latter-day pro-Macedonians with the ‘praiseworthy’ Mακεδον⋯ζοντες of the time of Philip II, so unjustly attacked by Demosthenes! Polybius’ change in what he considers a proper policy towards Macedon appears to reflect his moral judgement on Philip II and Philip V: in reality it reflects the political interests of the Peloponnese and specifically those of the Megalopolitan bourgeoisie.

page 8 note 2 On the special connexion between Helios and Liberty see the references in Momigliano, , JRS, xxxii, 1942, 55, n. 13.

page 8 note 3 The Roman προα⋯ρεσις at this time is excellently discussed and illustrated by Gelzer, M., Hermes, Ixviii, 1933, 132–3, 145.

page 8 note 4 JRS, xxxii, 1942, 5764.

page 8 note 5 See Philip V, 179, n. 1, 181, n. 2 for references.

page 8 note 6 Betgk, Poet. lyr. graec. 4 iii. 196, claims this poem for Alcaeus (following Heckef). The data are not adequate for a decision one way or the other. The connecting of Rome with Troy, implied in Aἰνε⋯δας, is typical of the Roman propaganda of this time; cf. Sytt.3 591 (in which the theme recurs in an appeal of Lampsacus to be included in the peace after Cynoscephalae; see Bickermann, , Philol. lxxxvii, 1932, 277–99) and Lycophron, 1226 f., 1442 f. (if Ziegler is right in dating its composition c. 196).

page 8 note 7 Particularly interesting and significant is Livy (Pol.), xxxiv. 32. 13 (Flamininus’ reply to Nabis): ‘hoc tu dicas liberantibus Graeciam? hoc iis qui, ut liberate possent, mare traiecerunt, terra marique gesserunt bellum?’ Here in a specifically anti-Spartan context Flamininus combines the two clauses of Roman propaganda —⋯λευθερ⋯α and successful action by land and sea—in an obvious appeal to Peloponnesian sentiment. In return the Greeks acclaimed Flamininus by the title he had thus chosen: cf. Livy (Pol.), xxxiv. 50. 9 (at Corinth in 194): ‘prosequentibus cunctis, servatorem liberatoremque exclamantibus’—the cue having been given in Flamininus’ speech (Livy (Pol.), xxxiv. 49); see the other passages quoted in CQ. xxxvi. p. 145, n. 1, and in addition Syll.3 613, n. 11. 1058, for the Eleutheria games set up by Flamininus at Larisa, in imitation of those still celebrated at Plataea (a reference which I owe to DT. Elhxetibeig). This same libertas motif is once more resuscitated (after a gap of some years; cf. Colin, G., Rome et la Grke (1905), 420) in 170, at the time of the war with Perseus (cf. Livy, (Ann.), xliii. 8. 6 f.: the Senate's reply to the complaints of Chalcis against C. Lucretius; (Ann.) xlv, 18; Polyb. xxxvi. 17. 13).

page 9 note 1 That he is not very happy in this apologia can be seen from the surprising contradiction which emerges from the comparison of xviii. 6 with xviii. 11. 4 and 6; the phrases ἔννοιαν λαβεῖν ⋯λευθερ⋯ασ and ⋯ναπνε⋯σαι occur in both policy which involved the Macedonian occupation of Corinth and several Peloponnesian towns, in the other they refer specifically to the evacuation of Corinth by Philip V's garrisons! recent discussion of this very illuminating piece of Polybian polemic against Demosthenes see , Demosthenes im Urteile des Alterlums (1923), 123–5; Pickard-Cambridge, A. W., Demosthenes and the Last Days of Greek Freedom (1914), 489 f.; Aymard, A., Rev. Hist, lxiii. 183, 1938, 79 f.; ibid. Ixiv. 185, 1939, 216–18; P. Cloché, ibid., and Ant. class, viii, 1939, 361 f.; cf. Treves, , Les ét. class, ix, 1940, 168, n. 2.

page 9 note 2 IG iv.2 1.590; cf. Gaertringen, Hiller v., Hist gr. Epig. 103. This epigram is an interesting counterpart to Polybius’ defence of the fourth-century Macedonizers, in its praise of Philip who (lines 6–7: ν⋯σωι | “Aπιδι (i.e. the Peloponnese) τ⋯ν ⋯λο⋯ν ἄρ[κεσε δουλοσ⋯ναν], | πολλ⋯μ⋯ν Aἰτωλοῖσι κ[ακορρ⋯κταις κακ⋯ ῥ]⋯ξας, | μυρ⋯α δ’ εὐπώλωι λυγρ⋯ [Δακων⋯δι γ⋯ι].

page 9 note 3 Polyb. vii. II. 8.

page 9 note 4 Les. ét. class. ix, 1940, 167–8.

page 9 note 5 On Damagetus see Friedländer, P., AJPh, lxiii, 1942, 7882. Wilamowitz, , Hell. Dichtung, i. 223, describes Damagetus as ‘obviously a Peloponnesian’; R. Reitzenstein, P-W, s.v. ‘Damagetos (4)’, col. 2027, recognizes the Pelopassages, ponnesian tradition in his work, but locates him in one of the Dorian districts linked with the Achaean League. From Friedlander's article it seems clear that he was an Acarnanian, probably from near Thyrrheum.

page 9 note 6 On this see Treves, , op. cit. 160–1; the clash came almost to the surface in the debate which attended the opening of Philip's naval policy in spring, 218; cf. Philip V, 53 f. (rival policies urged by Acarnania and the Peloponnesian states of the Symmachy).

page 9 note 7 Two anti-Spartan epigrams (celebrating the destruction of 188) are Anth. Pal. vii. 723 (anon.) and P. Ox. (ed. Grenfell and Hunt), iv, No. 662 (Amyntas); cf. Powell, , New Chapters in Greek Literature (Series 3), 1935, 188–9.

page 9 note 8 Plut, . Philop. II. 2.

page 9 note 9 See above, p. 5, n. 6. It is perhaps not fanciful to see in the epigram on Titus, and Xerxes, (Anth. Pal. xvi. 5) a reply to the Macedonian propaganda. Philip II and Alexander built up Hellenic unity around the anti-Persian campaign, which was presented as just retribution for Marathon and the Persian invasion of Xerxes. As the true descendant of Philip II, Philip V may have attempted to represent the Romans as a second Persian invader, against whom he would rally Greece. Alcaeus retaliates by elaborating the comparison—the difference being that Flamininus comes to free Greece. The conceit is in keeping with the age that produced the Alexandra; and a similar point is made by Polybius, in relation to Perseus of Macedon, when after his preliminary cavalry victory, popular opinion in Greece veered round to his side (xxvii. 9). Polybius tells how the famous Cleitomachus of Thebes was fighting an Egyptian champion and, when the crowd cheered his opponent, reproved them, by pointing out that he was fighting ὑπ⋯ρ τ⋯ς τ⋯ν ‘Eλλ⋯νων δ⋯ξης. The point the historian would make is that the Romans were now fighting ‘for the glory of the Greeks’, and Perseus, the king of Macedon, was now the outsider. The wheel had swung full circle.

page 10 note 1 ap. Susemihl, , op. cit. ii. 546, n. 140.

page 10 note 2 Cf. Gerhard, P-W, s.v. ‘Kerkidas (2)’, cols. 302–3, who quotes Schmidt, , Gött. gel. Anz., 1912, 639 f. for a list of these. Cercidas’ διπλ⋯ and τριπλ⋯ are also discussed by Pasquali, , Orazio lirico (1920), 220 f.

page 10 note 3 Cf. Powell, J. U., Collectanea Alexandrina (1925), 212, fr. 11 (= Athen. viii. 347 E).

page 10 note 4 To the examples from Alcaeus quoted above one may add Anth. Pal. ix. 518, where ⋯μβατ⋯ links Philip's attempt on Olympus with the attempt of Otus and Ephialtes (Od. xi. 316) to pile Ossa on Olympus and Pelion on Ossa, ἴν’ οὐραν⋯ς ⋯μβατ⋯ς εἴη (see also CQ. xxxvi, p. 136, n. 3). Anth. Pal. vii. 1 and vii. 5 (by Alcaeus?) are not important for this point. The fragments of Cercidas constantly refer to Homer, and according to one tradition he left instructions that Iliad i and ii were to be buried with him (Ptolem. τ⋯ν ‘Hφαιστ⋯ωνος ap. Photius, , Bibl. 190; cf. Eust. B, p. 199; Aelian, , V.H. xiii. 20).

page 10 note 5 Von Arnim, P-W, s.v. ‘Bion’, col. 485. Bion used ‘die in der kynischen oder kynisch beeinflussten Litteratur so beliebte Parodierung bekannter Dichterstellen’. Gerhard, loc. cit., speaks of Cercidas' use of compounds being reminiscent of the dithyramb, old comedy, and 'die bekanntlich selber vielfach von dieser abhängigen, dem Kerkidas verwandten und gleichzeitigen Parodisten wie Bion’. Cf. Tarn, , Hellen. Civilisation1 (1930), 226.

page 10 note 6 Euseb, Porphyry ap.. Praep. Evang. x. 3. 23. 467 d = Fr. gr. Hist. 70 T. 17. In the same passage Porphyry attributes two books Περ⋯ τ⋯ς ‘Ẹπ⋯ρου κλοπ⋯ς to Lysimachus, probably the grammarian of that name and a contemporary of Alcaeus (cf. Gudeman, P-W, s.v. ‘Lysimachos (20)’, cols. 33–4; Jacoby, , Fr. gr. Hist. ii c, commenting on 70 T. 17). Exposing plagiarism was apparently popular at this time. Another contemporary, famous in this as in so many other fields (cf. Vitruv. vii, praef. 5), Aristophanes of Byzantium, set the ball rolling with an ‘exposure’ of Menander entitled παρ⋯λληλι Mεν⋯νδρου τε κα⋯ ⋯π'ὧν ἔκλεψεν ⋯κλογα⋯ (Euseb, Porphyry ap.. Praep. Evang. x. 3. 12. 465 d). Gudeman suggests, very plausibly, that Lysimachus’ work provided Alcaeus with his material; his contribution was the use of parody. The reason for Alcaeus’ attack, which on this hypothesis was not simply a literary exposure, must remain obscure, so long as the question of Ephorus’ attitude towards the fourth-century Macedonian hegemony remains under dispute; and this in turn depends on what view one takes of Diodorus’ sources in Book XVI—a question which cannot be dealt with here. If one accepts Treves', theory (Annali della R. Scuola Normale Superiore de Pisa, S. II, vi, 1937, 255–79) that Ephorus’ exaltation of Thebes is his way of expressing his panhellenic opposition to Macedon and the claims of Alexander, Alcaeus’ attack may represent the third-century contrary propaganda of the Peloponnese, which claimed to see in Philip II the liberator of Greece from Sparta (see above, p. 8). But it is more usual to attribute the pro-Philippic passages of Diod. xvi, and in particular the prologue, to Ephorus (e.g. Momigliano, , Rend. Lomb. lxv, 1932, 523–43; Filippo, 195; Riv. Fil. 180–204; Hammond, N. G. L., Class. Quart, xxxi, 1937, 88–9), in which case it would seem that Ephorus accepted the fait accompli of Chaeronea, like the anonymousauthor of the third letter of ‘Isocrates’. In this case, Alcaeus’ attempt to discredit Ephorus must be subsequent to his breach with Philip. This hypothesis has its difficulties, of which two may be noticed here. First, as the example of Polybius shows (see above, p. 8, n. 1), hostility towards Philip V did not necessarily involve an adjustment in one's attitude towards Philip II; and secondly, it is not easy to see why Alcaeus should have singled out Ephorus for attack in preference to Theopompus or one of the other writers of Philippic histories.

page 11 note 1 See above, p. 3, n. 2.

page 11 note 2 Anth. Pal. xvi. 26 B; cf. Plut, . Flam. 9–3; the coarser retort, Anth.Pal. ix. 520, is a good example of a πα⋯γνων, a mock epitaph composed over the wine-cups.

page 11 note 3 This literary affiliation is denied by Ad. Gerhard, P-W, s.v. ‘Kerkidas (2)’, col. 307; Phoinix von Kolophon (1909), 226, n. 6; but he hardly deals with Knaack's point. Incidentally, this affiliation to the Cynics shows conclusively that the Alcaeus (or Alcius) expelled from Rome as an Epicurean philosopher (Athen. xii. 547 a; Aelian, , V.H. ix. 12) has nothing to do with Alcaeus of Messene.

page 11 note 4 On Cercidas see Gerhard, P-W, s.v. ‘Kerkidas (2)’, cols. 294–308 (with the additional note of W. Kroll, col. 308); Wilamowitz, , Berlin Sit. Ber., 1918, 1138 f.; Powell, J. U., Coll. Alexand. 201 f. for fragments; Pasquali, G., Orazio lirico, 210 f., 220, 226 f.; Dudley, D. R., History of Cynicism (1937), 7484; Barber, E. A. in Powell-Barber, , New Chapters in the History of Greek Literature (1921), 2 f. The identity of the poet, law-giver, and third-century politician is now generally accepted.

page 11 note 5 This Cercidas was also mentioned as a friend of Macedon by Theopompus, in Philipp. 15, according to Harpokration, , s.v. (cf. Fr. gr. Hist. 115 F. 119). Cf. also Demosth, . de fals. leg. 256 f.

page 11 note 6 IG v. 2, p. 130, line 104, and p. 157; cf. Kroll, P-W, s.v. ‘Kerkidas (2)’, col. 308; Dudley, op. cit. 77.

page 11 note 7 Powell, , op. cit. 210–11, fr. 8, line 9. On Sphaerus see Hobein, , P-W, s.v. ‘Sphairos (3)’, cols. 16831693; Oilier, F., REG, xlix, 1936, 537 f.

page 11 note 8 Powell, , op. cit. 203–6, fr. 4. For the view that it is directed against Cleomenes see Tarn, , Hellen. Civilisation, 2226. Dudley, D. R., op. cit. 7881, has recently suggested that this fragment is to be connected with the difficulties that arose in Megalopolis, on its rebuilding after the destruction by Cleomenes. Prytanis, the Peripatetic, who had been set up as νομοθ⋯της, was under Macedonian influence and therefore hampered, Cercidas, as Aratus’ nominee, spoke out for the poor, and as a preliminary to becoming νομοθ⋯της himself wrote a poem which ‘is a warning to the governing classes to mend their Ferraways while there is yet time, but a call to the party of reform not to wait for the vengeance of Heaven to strike the rich, but to act themselves under the inspiration of a new triad of deities, Paean and Sharing (Mετ⋯δως) and Nemesis'. I do not find this very convincing. First, it presupposes that when Cercidas speaks as a poor man, he is speaking in person and not merely putting a case. But (as has been pointed out by Barber, E. A. in Powell-Barber, , New Chapters (1921), 3, who also believes Cercidas to be speaking in persona) it seems unlikely that the πατρικ⋯ςξ⋯νος of Aratus and the Antigonids was among the downtrodden. Further, it implies that Aratus supported as νομο⋯της a man who preached revolutionary action and the sharing out of the land of the rich by the poor—which was precisely Cleomenes’ programme, to thwart which Aratus had recalled the Macedonians into the Peloponnese. Polybius’ account of the settlement of 217 at Megalopolis (v. 93) is very vague, but it certainly suggests a compromise. (For a not very convincing hypothesis of how this was brought about see Ferrawaysbino, A., Arato di Sicione e I'idea federate (1921), 218–21.)

page 12 note 1 Fr. 4, lines 47–8:

ἇμιν δ⋯ Παι⋯ν κα⋯ Mετ⋯δως μελ⋯τω

θε⋯ς γ⋯ρ αὓτα, κα⋯ N⋯μεσις κατ⋯ γ⋯ν.

‘Paean’ may be, however, not the god of healing, but ‘he who presides over the frugal banquets of the Cynics’ (Pasquali, , op. cit. 217).

page 12 note 2 See Philip V, 17, 29–30, on the class alignment inside the Peloponnese and the role of the Symmachy in relation to it.

page 12 note 3 Polyb. ii. 61. 4; 62. 10; Plut, . Cleom. 24. 1; Philop. 5. I f.; Pausan. iv. 29. 7–8. Cf. Fine, J. V. A., AJPh, lxi, 1940, 155.

page 12 note 2 This movement is described by Fine, , op. cit, 155 f.

page 12 note 5 See above, p. 1, n. 6 and p. 9, n. 8.

page 13 note 1 See above, p. 9, n. 9.

page 13 note 2 Polyb. xviii. 13. 8; see the analysis in Aymard, , Premiers rapports, 92 f. It is indeed true that the breach had been prepared. The Achaean risorgimento under Philopoemen had its anti-Macedonian aspect (cf. Philip V, 124, n. 6; Aymard, , Premiers rapports, 47 n.); but between Rome and Macedon, Philopoemen sought neutrality. And meanwhile Nabis’ attack on Messene in 201, which represented a new Spartan claim to hegemony (cf. Aymard, , op. cit. 41), served to recall the old basis of the Achaeo-Macedonian rapprochement.

page 13 note 3 Livy (Pol.), xxxii. 22. 10–11 (Argos, Dyme, indeed and Megalopolis); 23. 5 (Corinth).

page 13 note 4 Philip V, 78, n. 8; 301 f. It might be argued that Alcaeus’ loyalty to Philip even after the Messenian troubles can be explained by assuming as that he was at that time too young to be inbetween fluenced by them; but the example of Ireland is sufficient evidence that the memory of such events dies hard. Alcaeus’ allegiance can only be satisfactorily explained in political terms.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

The Classical Quarterly
  • ISSN: 0009-8388
  • EISSN: 1471-6844
  • URL: /core/journals/classical-quarterly
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed