Skip to main content
×
×
Home

Propertius and Antony*

  • Jasper Griffin (a1)
Extract

In a recent article, ‘Augustan Poetry and the Life of Luxury’, JRS 66 (1976), 87, I argued that much recent scholarship has misjudged the Augustan poets in certain important respects, because it has been thought in principle possible to separate ‘literature’ and ‘life’, as if they were clearly distinguishable entities; in reality, the two affect each other in a ceaseless mutual interaction. That argument was developed as a general treatment of the βίος φιλήδονος as presented in Latin literature, and as lived in reality in a society in which Greek and Italian elements, poetical motifs and real behaviour, were inextricably intermingled.

The present paper is devoted to a more particular enquiry into one poet and one type of historical figure. I argue that Propertius' presentation of himself in poetry as a lover—romantic, reckless and obsessed—is closely related to the figure in history of Mark Antony. That historical figure is itself to be seen in a long tradition of great lovers of pleasure, in which the actual lives of real men can be seen to be shaped and coloured by the influence of ‘literature’. The argument of my earlier paper does not depend for its validity upon the acceptance of the present one, but they both pursue the same approach.

Copyright
References
Hide All

1 I have called him ‘Mark Antony’ rather than ‘M. Antonius’ because I am concerned with him as much for his literary resonance as for his historical reality.

2 Some suggest (W. Richter in WS 79 (1966), 463) that in IV. 6 Propertius deliberately attacks Horace's restrained treatment of Cleopatra's death, with the simple aim of the greatest possible praise of Augustus at his enemies' expense. But encomium by Propertius too often fails to rise above the tepid for this to be plausible; cf. II. 1. 25: ‘bellaque resque tui memorarem Caesaris’, in a context where Prop, mentions the Perusine War (29), a piece of history which might perhaps have endeared Antony rather than Octavian to the poet; II. 10. 8: ‘bella canam, quando scripta puella mea est’; and III. 4, a very ironical poem. On III. 4, rightly Wilkinson, L. P. in Studi Castiglioni II, 10931103, and Hubbard, Margaret, Propertius (1974), 103; by contrast Cairns, F., Generic Composition (1972), 186, sees only ‘unabashed admiration’, while Williams, G., Tradition and Originality (1968), 433, thinks it ‘may be more pleasingly ironical than he intended’. These careless elegists ! After 69 lines of IV. 6 Propertius is frankly tired of his subject, and with a disarming ‘bella satis cecini’ turns to the more congenial topic of a party. See La Penna, A., Orazio e l'ideologia del principato (1963), 133.

3 Medea in the vocabulary of political abuse: Cic., Cael. 18 (of Clodia); de lege Manilia 22 (of Mithridates). See n. 79 below.

4 Omphale in the vocabulary of political abuse: Plutarch, , Pericles 24; idem, Comparatio Demetrii et Antonii 3. 2, (of Antony). Some moderns assert that it was applied to Alexander and Roxane (so Volkmann, H., Kleopatra (1953), 134), but I have found no source.

5 Semiramis in the vocabulary of political abuse: Cic., prov. cons. 9 (of Gabinius).

6 Alfonsi, L., L'elegia di Properzio (1945), 66 f. thinks the two motifs blend better, and even finds ‘lo spirito è piuttosto virgiliano’. Contra, Margaret Hubbard, op. cit. (n. 2), 89: (in certain poems in Book III) ‘the development of the topics is often derivative and unconvinced, like the Cleopatra episode of III. 11’.

7 cf. on this point A. La Penna, op. cit. (n. 2), 127. Prop. III. 11 is not mentioned in this connection either by him or by Solmsen, F., ‘Propertius and Horace’, CP 43 (1948), 105 = Kleine Schriften II, 278.

8 Discussed by Hubbard, op. cit. (n. 2), 58 f., with different results.

9 Tradition and Originality, 559.

10 cf. JRS 66 (1976), 95, n. 148.

11 With the technique compare for example III. 14. The poem opens with a straight-faced announcement that ‘there are many things we admire about the Spartan education’; but it turns out that, instead of the all too familiar praise of Spartan toughness and self-denial, we find an amusingly unexpected encomium on the unparalleled advantages it offered the lover for getting close to his girl.

12 Plutarch, , Comparatio 3.

13 Edition of Book III ad loc.

14 I am sceptical about Propertius' knowledge of Philetas; even of Callimachus, copies of whom must have been easier to find, what he says in Books II and III is extraordinarily slight. Outside the Aetia prologue, his knowledge of Callimachus before he wrote Book IV was hardly great.

15 Locus classicus on this: von Wilamowitz, U., Antigonos von Karystos (1881), 47 f.

16 Susemihl, , Gesch. d. gr. Lit. (18911892) I, 148 f. Theof Timon also are relevant: see fr. 9, 30, 54, Σιλλοί 56 and 59. See Wachsmuth on Anaxarchus and φύσις ἡδονοπλήξ, Epicurus γαστρὶ χαριζόμενος etc.

17 W. Ludwig in GRBS 4 (1963), 59 f.

18 Fr. 755 (Marx).

19 Susemihl, op. cit. (n. 16), I, 148.

20 Its importance for the ancient conception of him is realized by Taeger, F., Alkibiades (1943), 86 n. 10. The material goes back as far as Lysias XIV; [Andocides] IV, Against Alcibiades; and Antiphon fr. 67 (Blass). Douris contributed some melodramatic flourishes. Cf. D. A. Russell, PCPhS 192 (1966), 37, who points out that material on Alcibiades' life was quite unusually rich, and that he was early a subject for full-scale biographies. ‘La mémoire d'Alcibiade occupait singulièrement l'opinion publique pendant les dix premières années du IVe siècle’, G. Dalmeyda in the Budé edition of Andocides (1960), 109.

21 Ed. with commentary by A. S. F. Gow, 1965. Stories about Euripides and Sophocles (XVIII), Diphilus (III, XVI), Philoxenus (IX, X), and the citharode Stratonicus (XI), as well as the dynasts. In Rome, Volumnia Cytheris is found dining with senators, Cic., ad fam. IX, 26; cf. JRS 66 (1976), 100–4. Cf. Luck, G., ‘Women's Role in Latin Love Poetry’, in Perspectives of Roman Poetry (1974).

22 Fr. 263M: ‘Phryne nobilis ilia ubi amatorem improbius quern …’

23 Plut., , Alexander 38, from Clitarchus, FGH 137 fr. 11. RE, s.v. Thaïs, gives the efforts of modern historians to tone down, without rejecting, this romantic story. Plutarch, , Alexander 40 and 67, further examples of his τρυφή ‘L'exemple de la chasteté d'Alexandre n'a pas tant fait de continents que celui de son ivrognerie a fait d'intempérants’, observes Pascal (Pensées, edn. de la Pléiade, p. 1134).

24 Plut., , Demetrius 27: the dinner made by Lamia for Demetrius οὔτως ἤνθησε τῇ δόξῃ διὰ τὴν πολυτέλειαν ὥστε ὑπὸ Λυγκέως τοῦ Σαμίου συγγεγράφθαι. An account of a luxury meal by Hippolochus, Athenaeus 128–31, cf. Susemihl, op. cit. (n. 16), I, 486 f. All this is an obvious source for poems like Horace, Serm. II. 8, and for the conception, and reality, of the luxury of Sulla and Antony.

25 Athenaeus 206d-209e. Susemihl speaks of ‘the fabulous luxury and still unequalled splendour of this ancient “Great Eastern”, built with the aid of Archimedes’ (I, 883). The luxuriousness of Cleopatra's shipping was still a conventional theme centuries later; Pacatus, Pan. Lat. III, 33: ‘quis annalium scriptor aut carminum tuas illas, Cleopatra, classes et elaborata navigia et purpurea cum auratis funibus vela tacuit ?’

26 We know of works by Ammonius, Antiphanes, Apollodorus, Aristophanes and Gorgias of Athens. Evidently there was a demand.

27 Bignone, E., L'Aristotele perduto e la formazione filosofica di Epicuro I (1936), 276 f. Speusippus, Xenocrates, Theophrastus, Heraclides Ponticus, Clearchus, Aristoxenus and Strato all wrote on ὴδονή. The long fragment (50, Wehrli) of Aristoxenus' Life of Archytas ( = Athenaeus 545 b seqq.) deals with luxury and pleasure in different parts of the world; cf. also Clearchus fr. 19 (Wehrli) (from his Gergithius), fr. 24, 25, 29, 30 etc. (from his Ἐρωτικός), and fr. 41–62 (from his Bíoi). Fr. 47 of Clearchus gives an idea of the ostensible morality of such works—εὐλαβητέον οὖν τὴν καλουμένην τρυφήν, etc. Heraclides Ponticus περὶ ἡδονῆς praised pleasure as the highest good (55), said Pericles lived for pleasure (59)—and sometimes gave the ‘moral’ (fr. 61, ταũτα πάντα ποιούσης τῆς ἀκολάστου τρυφῆς). The philosopher Aristippus was a focus for anecdotes setting out with censorious relish his hedonistic life and philosophy. Cicero invokes him (ad fam. IX. 26) after dining with Cytheris; Horace uses him (in Serm. II. 3. 100 and Epp. I. 1. 18; I. 17. 14) as an emblematic figure, rather than as a philosopher whose works one read. That is to say, he was a creation of anecdote. His connection with Laïs (ἔχω ἀλλὰ οὐκ ἔχομαι) was important to this picture. Cf. G. Giannantoni, I. cirenaici (1958), 13: ‘Tutto cooperava a fare di lui una specie di simbolo, l'immagine più coerente dell'uomo φιλήδονος’.

28 Sex-manuals etc., mostly published under the name of some famous ἑταίρα: ‘Philaenis’, cf. P. Oxy. 2891, Athenaeus 335b–e, 457; ‘Elephantis’: Polybius XII. 13, Athenaeus 220 f., 162b. Improper fiction existed: Sisenna, praetor in 78 B.C., translated into Latin the Μιλησιακά of Aristides (the Parthians were shocked to find it in the baggage of Crassus' officers at Carrhae, Plut., Crassus 32). For the celebrity of these works at Rome, cf. Sueton., Tib. 43; Priapea 4; Martial XII. 43. On ‘Philaenis’, see Tsantsanoglu, K., ‘The Memoirs of a Lady from Samos’, in ZPE 12 (1973), 183 f.

29 Süss, W., Ethos (1910), 249 f.

30 Nisbet, R. G. M., edition of Cicero, In Pisonem, 192 f. If a prosecutor did not produce accusations of debauchery in youth, the omission was a striking and telling one: Cic., Font. 37.

31 The Bithynian scandal was played up for all it was worth, Plut., Caesar I; Suet., D. Caes. 2 and 49. It was versified by Calvus (‘Calvi Licini notissimos versus’, Suet., D. Caes. 49), written up in prose by C. Memmius, ventilated in the actiones of Dolabella and the elder Curio, published in edicts by Bibulus, joked of by Cicero, sung of at his triumph—vexing him sufficiently to make him deny it on oath. Other stories were gleefully exploited: M. Actorius Naso told of his enormous presents to Queen Eunoe (Suet., D. Jul. 52); ‘some Greek writers’ are quoted for the assertion that Caesarion really was his son by Cleopatra and resembled him (ibid.).

32 Scott, K., ‘Octavian's Propaganda and Antony's De sua ebrietate’, CP 24 (1929), 133 f.: idem, ‘The Political Propaganda of 44–30 B.C.’, MAAR II (1933). 7 f.

33 Stähelin in RE XI 767. 12 f.: ‘hat sich … dieses Imponderabile … eben doch als schwerstes Gewicht auf die Wage des Schicksals gelegt.’

34 Plut., Alcibiades 9.

35 cf. Wippert, O., Alexander—Imitatio und röm. Politik in der rep. Zeit, Diss. Würzburg (1972).

36 Said ‘crebro’ by Pompey in the Civil War, Cic., ad Att. IX. 10. 2.

37 BJ 95: ‘animo ingenti, cupidus voluptatum sed gloriae cupidior; otio luxuriosus esse, tamen ab negotiis numquam voluptas remorata …’

38 BC 5, 14–16, 60 (his heroic last fight). Cicero, at need, gives the same picture, pro Cael. 12–13: (of Catiline), ‘flagrabant vitia libidinis apud ilium; vigebant etiam studia rei militaris’, etc. ‘The old Republic knew that vice and energy are not incompatible’, Syme, R., Tacitus II, 545.

39 II. 88. 2: ‘ubi res vigiliam exigeret, sane insomnis, providens atque agendi sciens; simul vero aliquid ex negotiis remitti posset, otio et mollitiis paene ultra feminam fluens’.

40 Seneca, Epp. 114. 6. The tutor of Nero is never weary of attacking the vices of the friend of Augustus.

41 Tac., Ann. III. 30. 4: ‘per cultum et munditias copiaque et affluentia luxu propior. suberat tamen vigor animi …’

42 Ann. VI. 32. 4.

43 Ann. XIII. 46. 3; Hist. I. 13 and 21.

44 Ann. XVI. 18.

45 Hist. I. 10.

46 Hist. I. 48.

47 Syme, R., Tacitus II, 538 n. 6; Krohn, F., Personendarstellung bei Tacitus, Diss. Leipzig (1934), 96. Valerius Asiaticus, too, combined luxury and in rem publicam officia. He showed undaunted courage at his death.

48 Lucullus 39–41; Cimon 3; Comparatio 1.

49 e.g. Antony 17.

50 Alcibiades 2; Agis 2; Coriol. 1; Themistocles 2; Demetrius 1; Moralia 552b.

51 Dihle, A, Studien zur gr. Biographie (1956), 84 f.; Russell, D. A., Plutarch (1973), 105, 123.

52 Surely this kind of life, essentially aristocratic in conception and at the opposite remove from the caution of the good functionary, was a way in which some Roman nobles kept their self-respect under the early Empire, when consistent displays of talent and energy were dangerous. Had Tacitus wished, he might have recognized in it another path than that trodden by the virtuous Agricola and the weighty Lepidus, M., ‘inter abruptam contumaciam et deforme obsequium’ (Ann. IV. 20). Perhaps he did.

53 Nor they alone. In fiction, the Scarlet Pimpernel, Rudolf Rassendyll, Bulldog Drummond, Lord Peter Wimsey and James Bond all witness to the appeal of the type to more popular tastes. In life, the success of Churchill as a war leader owed something to his evident love of cigars, brandy and champagne.

54 It is for instance well known that what we read of the club of Ἀμιμητόβιοι at Alexandria, Plut., , Antony 28, is strikingly confirmed by the inscription OGIS 195, in which one παράσιτος honours Ἀντώνιον μἐγαν ἀμίμητον ἀφροδισίοις; cf. Fraser, P. M. in JRS 47 (1957). 71–3. There seems also no reason to suspect the evidence of Plutarch's great-grandfather and of Philotas (Antony 28, 68). But e.g. Plutarch, , Antony 59, ‘most of the charges brought by Calvisius were thought to be falsehoods’, and some of the stories are too fantastic: cf. Becher, I., Das Bild der Kleopatra (1960), 39, 134.

55 Suet., D. Aug. 70.

56 Veil. Pat. II. 83, perhaps from Pollio; cf. Williams, G., Tradition and Originality, 85.

57 Plutarch, , Antony 28.

58 Appian, BC V. 9.

59 Livy, Periocha 130.

60 Plut., , Antony 66.

61 van Berchem, D., ‘Cynthia ou la carrière contrariée’, Mus. Helv. 5 (1948), 137 f.; Fontenrose, J., ‘Propertius and the Roman Career’, Univ. Calif. Publ. in Class. Phil. 13 no. 11 (1949), 371 f.; Burck, E., ‘Römische Wesenszüge der aug. Liebeselegie’, Hermes 80 (1952), 163 f. = Vom Menschenbild, 191 f.; Boucher, J.-P., Etudes sur Properce (1965), chap. 1.

62 Prop. I. 1. 6 cf. II. 12. 3: ‘sine sensu vivere amantes’; Boucher, loc. cit. 17: for Antony, e.g. Plut., , Antony 37, 62.

63 Prop. II. 6. 41: cf. II. 7. ‘Propertius rejects the approved Roman woman’, Fontenrose, loc. cit. 378. This is the meaning of Prop. I. 1. 5: ‘donec me docuit castas odisse puellas'—despite Allen in YCS 11 (1951), 266, Otis in HSCP 70 (1965), 40 f., and others; no ‘nuance of irony’ (Otis, 41), either. ‘“Irony” last resource of despairing commentators’, quips Fraenkel, E., Horace, 457–a lapidary phrase.

64 cf. Boucher, op. cit. (n. 61), 21 f., ‘Refus de la carrière politique’.

65 Prop. III. 5. 1, cf. I. 6. 30; III. 12, 4; Boucher, op. cit. (n. 61), 20, ‘Refus de la guerre’.

66 Prop. I. 6. 30.

67 Prop. III. 12. 5 f.

68 ‘In templis omnium civitatium proyinciae Asiae victor ornamenta reposui, quae spoliatis templis is cum quo bellum gesseram privatim possederat’, Res Gestae 24. cf. RE XI 767. 41 f.; JRS 66 (1976), 91.

69 e.g. Plutarch, , Antony 68, 69.

70 In the programmatic first poem, I. 1. 25: ‘et vos qui sero lapsum revocatis, amici …’, and in the poem in which he finally dismisses Cynthia, III. 24. 9: ‘quod mihi non patrii poterant avertere amici.’ Also in other poems, e.g. I. 4.

71 Plutarch, , >Antony 9. In a careful study of the Perusine War, E. Gabba finds that as early as 41, with stories circulating about his intrigues with women in Cappadocia and Egypt, even the Antonians themselves were not certainly satisfied by their leader's conduct’, HSCP 75 (1971), 149.

72 e.g. Prop. II. 24, 30.

73 Plut., Antony 60.1: καὶ προσεπεῖπε Καῖσαρ, ὡς ᾿Αντώνιος μὲν ὑπὸ φαρμάκων οὐδ᾿ αὑτοῦ κρατοίη … Cf. Propertius I. 5. 6, III. 6. 25, IV. 7. 72. Plutarch says of Antony (Vita 37): ‘He was not master of his own faculties, but as if he were under the influence of certain drugs or of magic rites, was ever looking towards her …’.

74 It is hard to feel that we fully understand the role of Bacchus in the work of these poets. Boyancé, P. (Entretiens Fondation Hardt II, 196 f.) argues for the existence of a regular sodalicium to which the poets belonged, with Bacchus as its patron. E. T. Silk, YCS 21 (1969), 195 f., emphasizes the element of recusatio in Horace's poems to Bacchus, but ignores; the poems of the other poets on the theme. A cool view: Hubbard, Margaret, Propertius, 79, ‘Probably it all seems more strange and wonderful to us than to a Roman, who saw many such things in the gardens of civilized villas and town houses’ (sc. as the mystic paraphernalia of Bacchus).

75 Plut., , Antony 28 (during the Perusin e War): οἴχεσθαι φερόμενον ὑπ᾿ αὐτῆς εἰς ᾿Αλεξάνδρειαν, ἐκεῖ δὲ μειρακίου σχολὴν ἄγοντος διατριβαῖς καὶ παιδιαῖς χρώμενον ἀναλίσκειν καὶ καθηδυπαθεῖν τὸ πολυτελέστατον ὡς ᾿Αντιφῶν εἶπεν ἀνάλωμα, τὸν χρόνον.

76 cf. also Tibullus I. 1. 57. The point is wittily put by Ovid, , Ars I. 504: ‘arbitrio dominae tempora perde tuae.’

77 Prop. I. 6. 25.

78 e.g. Copley, F. O., ‘Servitium Amoris in the Roman Elegists’, TAPA 78 (1947), 285 f.

79 As when Creon calls Haemon γυναικὸς δούλευμα Soph., Ant. 756, or when the historian records of Claudius that he ἐδουλοκρατήθη καὶ ἐγυναικοκρατήθη, Cassius Dio LX. 2. 4. The disgrace of being dominated by a woman is a common theme of Roman oratory. Cic., Verr. II. 1. 140: ‘Non te pudet, Verres, eius mulieris arbitratu gessisse praeturam ?’; ibid. II. 3. 30; ibid. 77: ‘Herbitenses cum viderent … se ad arbitrium libidinosissimae mulieris spoliatum iri..; ibid. 78 on Tertia; ibid. II. 4. 136: ‘Mulierum nobilium et formosarum gratia, quarum iste arbitrio praeturam per triennium gesserat’; ibid. 38; the role ascribed to Clodia in the pro Caelio, e.g. 32; 67: ‘Fortis viros ab imperatrice … conlocatos'; 78: ‘Ne patiamini M. Caelium libidini muliebri condonatum’; pro Cluentio 18, dominant role of the wicked Sassia; Philipp. VI. 4, (Antony) ‘mulieri citius avarissimae paruerit quam senatui populoque Romano’. See nn. 3–5 above for the appearance in political invective of the dominant women Medea, Omphale, Semiramis—who are for Propertius parallels to his mistress.

80 Copley, loc. cit. (n. 78), 291. It is surely odd to discuss such a them e with no mention of Antony. I take this opportunity to comment on the theory of Delia Corte, F., Cleopatra, M. Antonio e Ottaviano nelle allegorie storico-umoristiche del tesoro di Boscoreale (1951), 43, accepted by Becher, I., Das Bild der Kleopatra in der gr. und lat. Lit. (1966), 57 n. 3, that the striking silver dish from Boscoreale depicts Cleopatra, in a satirical light (good photograph in Monuments Piot V (1899), Pl. 1). His theory would suit my argument well, especially the suggestion that a lion, representing Antony, is shown as tamed and bewitched by a female panther, representing Cleopatra: ‘in posa decisamente pacifica, docile e incantato, come sotto il fascino dell'occhio d'un domatore’ (p. 38). In fact the lion is not looking at the panther at all, and the identification of the main figure with Cleopatra seems most improbable. I am grateful to Professor Martin Robertson for the following note: ‘The figure looks to me like a personification. In principle it could very well be a portrait at the same time, but it doesn't look to me very personalized and certainly not like Cleopatra’. The older view, that it represents Africa or Egypt, seems much more likely. Other representations in art remain; cf. A. Oxé in Bonn. Jahrb. 138 (1933), 81 f., esp. 94 f.; Volkmann, H., Kleopatra (1953), 134.

81 P. J. Enk, edition of Propertius I (1946), 79. Hubaux, J. in Miscellanea Properziana (1957), 34.

82 e.g. Boucher, op. cit. (n. 61), ch. 3: ‘Le sentiment de la mort’.

83 Suetonius, D. Aug. 99.

84 Prop. I. 17. 19 f.; 19; II. 1. 71 f.; 24. 35 f.

85 Prop. II. 8. 25.

86 Prop. II. 20. 17 f.; cf. II. 28. 39: ‘una ratis fati nostros portabit amores.’

87 Prop. I. 17. 21.

88 Prop. I. 19. 11 f.; IV. 7. 93 f.

89 Tibull. I. 1. 59 f.

90 Dio L. 3. 5: τὸ σῶμα τὸ ἑαυτοῦ ἔν τε τῇ ᾿Αλεξανδρείᾳ καὶ σὺν ἐκείνῃ ταφῆναι ἐκεκελεύκει; Plutarch, Ant. 58. 8.

91 Plut., Alcib. 39.6. Scholars give what seems to me rather surprising credence to the vaguely reported story (λέγουσι, says Plutarch) that this Timandra was the mother of one of the courtesans called Laïs: so Göber in RE sv. Timandra (3), Geyer in RE sv. Laïs (2). In view of the contradictory reports about these women, such a natural piece of gossipy prosopography is probably worth nothing.

92 Plut., , Antony 71.

93 ibid. 84.

94 ibid. 82.

95 Jacoby observes, on Socrates of Rhodes (FGH no. 192), that ‘very many Greeks’ must have written of Antony's career, immediately after Actium, in a sense acceptable to Octavian, to explain to the Eastern world what had happened. Russell, D. A., Plutarch, 140, conjectures that Antony's companions at the end, Aristocrates and Lucilius, may have left written accounts (for ‘p. 1’ read ‘69.1’).

96 cf. Rose, H. J. in Annals of Arch, and Anthrop., Liverpool II (1924), 25 f.

97 Some (Nisbet, and Hubbard, , Commentary on Horace, Odes I, p. 410) doubt the historical reality of Cleopatra's suicide.

98 So Margaret Hubbard, op. cit. (n. 2), 43 f.

99 It is pleasing that Antony's son Julius Antonius was a close friend of the witty and indiscreet Julia.

100 Plutarch, , Pericles 24. The same image is used by Plutarch of Antony: Comparatio 3. 2.

101 Plut., , Antony 6 and 43. Gardthausen, V., Augustus und seine Zeit (1891) I, 429, speaks of Antony's ‘sinnliche Sultansnatur und sein ritterlicher Charakter’; despite the charm of this description, I think F. Taeger is nearer to the truth, at least of his final period, when he says, Charisma II (1960), 92: ‘In masslos barbarischer Steigerung überschlug sich in Antonius das späthellenistische Lebensgefühl’, and finds in him a deracinated Roman lost between Rome and Greece. Wippert, O., Alexander—Imitatio, 205, is at least premature to say that ‘es kann heute als allgemeine Ansicht gelten, dass Antonius keineswegs ein entarteter Römer gewesen ist’; and his own account in pp. 205–13 of Antony's ‘Absicht einer dynastischen Politik’ and his conception of himself as a successor of Alexander (‘er war mehr als König oder Grosskönig, denn er hatte die Titel gegeben’, 210), especially p. 212, seems effectively to concede what he denies.

102 Professor Millar points out the suggestiveness for Augustan literature of the anecdote in Macrobius, Sat. II. 4. 29–30: a man produced to Octavian after Actium a trained crow, which could say ‘Ave Caesar victor imperator’, but was forced to reveal that he also had a second, which had been taught to say ‘Ave victor imperator Antoni’.

* This paper has benefited from the learning and kindness of my wife, of Professor Hugh Lloyd-Jones, of Dr. Oliver Lyne, and of Sir Ronald Syme. Its present form owes much to the creative πειθανάγκη of Professor Fergus Millar.

Recommend this journal

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

The Journal of Roman Studies
  • ISSN: 0075-4358
  • EISSN: 1753-528X
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-roman-studies
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

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