Gli Incontri di filologia classica (INCF) sono una rivista scientifica internazionale a cadenza annuale. Nata per accogliere le relazioni discusse da studiosi appositamente invitati all’interno dei seminari che si tenevano presso l’Università di Trieste (da qui il titolo Incontri triestini di filologia classica, conservato fino al volume IX), la rivista pubblica, previa valutazione, contributi inviati alla redazione e/o discussi nell’ambito di incontri scientifici in Italia e all’estero.
The aim of this contribution is to offer an essay that investigates the different ways in which Maximus plays in his astrological poem with the (presumed) origin of the words used by him or with their meaning. We will first see how our astrologer is able to put etymology at the service of the composition of his predictions; then how he exploits the semantic ambiguity of certain terms, not only to show off his erudition, but also to make his poem more in keeping with the dictates of astrological literature; finally, how he implicitly succeeds in establishing what is for him the correct interpretation of a word susceptible to different and conflicting readings.
This article is a preliminary semantic and etymological study of a selection of terms – from fake synonyms and speaking names to thoroughly Christianized and/or Platonizing reclaims of the epic vocabulary – from the I HC and the II HC and its aim is twofold: on the one hand, it focuses on a selection of key semantic variations that result from the Christian semantic reception of archaic vocabulary and especially interpretations featuring in philological works, such as commentaries, scholia, and dictionaries; on the other hand, the analysis shows the influence of biblical exegesis in understanding the re-semanticized Homeric vocabulary in return and this was employed so as to further the existing Christian interpretation. The analysis concludes that by the fifth century the interpretation of the Bible through biblical classicizing poetry reveals a strikingly positive stance towards the Homeric text as a cultural authority useful also for Christian exegesis.
The paper investigates the use of etymologising in the Appendix Tibulliana and concludes that its purpose to link the probably late first-century AD author of this work with the great elegists of an earlier generation, namely Propertius, Ovid and, in particular, Tibullus. This etymologising takes place at the level both of common nouns and of proper names, with plays on the fictitious character names Lygdamus, Neaera and Cerinthus. In both cases the practice is firmly anchored in the literary techniques of Tibullus and the other elegists. The manipulation of earlier elegiac etymologising and of the previous literary identities of these character names provides the whole work with a structural unity and a specific chronological focus, and so lends weight to arguments for a single unitary author.
The paper deals with etymological wordplays on proper names in late antique metrical inscriptions, discussing some select examples from the 3rd to the 6th century AD, of both funerary and honorary epigrams. In most of the texts etymological puns on proper names are usually quite ‘easy’ to detect, but there are examples of more sophisticated wordplays that require a higher level of engagement from the reader. Their presence is a further evidence that metrical inscriptions were meant also to be read. If the targeted audience were primarily cultivated people, performative reading (perhaps accompanied by on-the-spot exegesis) probably also enabled less educated groups to appreciate etymological wordplays, which were after all extremely popular in antiquity.