CALLIMACHUS: THE HYMNS

Classics for All Reviews

with Introduction, Translation, and Commentary by Susan A. Stephens

OUP (2015) p/b 324pp £18.99 (ISBN 9780199783045)

Callimachus of Cyrene, a poet who worked in Alexandria and whose floruit was in the 3rd century BC, was also much more than a poet (Peter Parsons’s excellent article on him in The Oxford Classical Dictionary amply demonstrates his versatility). There have been full-scale commentaries on individual hymns, but this is the first anglophone effort in recent times to cover all six of them, and S. has performed a difficult task in an admirable way. The Introduction is followed by the text (with apparatus criticus) and translation—rather annoyingly following the text, rather than on facing pages—and commentary; there is also an introduction to each of the hymns, where, inter alia, each hymn’s relation to the Ptolemies (a highly important topic) is covered.

The Introduction includes a welcome section on the construction…

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