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Prolegomena to Homer, 1795

Prolegomena to Homer, 1795

FRIEDRICH AUGUST WOLF
ANTHONY GRAFTON
GLENN W. MOST
JAMES E. G. ZETZEL
Copyright Date: 1985
Pages: 280
https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt7ztn5t
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  • Book Info
    Prolegomena to Homer, 1795
    Book Description:

    The subjects Wolf addressed have dominated Homeric scholarship for almost two centuries. Especially important were his analyses of the history of writing and of the nature of Alexandrian scholarship and his consideration of the composition of the Homeric poems--which set the terms for the analyst/unitarian controversy. His exploration of the history of the transmission of the text in antiquity opened a new field of research and transformed conceptions of the relations of ancient and modern culture.

    Originally published in 1989.

    ThePrinceton Legacy Libraryuses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These paperback editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.

    eISBN: 978-1-4008-5769-2
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
  3. PREFACE
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
    (pp. xi-xii)
  5. A NOTE ON CITATIONS
    (pp. xiii-2)
  6. INTRODUCTION
    (pp. 3-36)

    Wolf was the son of a village schoolmaster in the Harz. After attending the secondary school at Nordhausen and reading widely on his own, he went in 1777 to the University of Göttingen, the most up-to-date institution of learning in Germany. The dominant scholar there was Christian Gottlob Heyne, who had done much to modernize classical studies by connecting research on ancient art with direct study of the ancient texts, by subjecting Greek mythology to a historical and comparative approach, and by reading Homer, in the manner of the English traveler Robert Wood, as a primitive poet rather than a...

  7. A NOTE ON THE TEXT AND TRANSLATION
    (pp. 37-40)
  8. PROLEGOMENA TO HOMER

    • CHAPTERS I-VII
      (pp. 43-58)

      Two principal kinds of emendation are normally applied to the books of the ancients, to free them from the many and varied flaws and stains that they have contracted on their long journey into barbarism, and restore them more nearly to their ancient and original form. The one entails more effort and, I might almost say, misery; the other, more leisurely delight. Each, if rightly applied, is useful; but one is more useful. Take someone, even someone poorly equipped with the best aids, who gives us a writer restored to a more correct form, either by conjecture or by the...

  9. PART ONE

    • CHAPTERS VIII-LI
      (pp. 59-219)

      Now it may at first seem surprising that I maintain that so much work must be spent on correcting Homer, when serious faults occur so rarely in him. Compare Apollonius Rhodius, as he was read before Brunck, or the texts of Quintus Smyrnaeus, which even now are very corrupt; clearly, the poet who is older by so many centuries must seem remarkably pure and correct. But what sort of book do we call “pure” in the critical sense of the word? Clearly not one which can be read without displeasure, and in which nothing violates elegant usage and the other...

  10. PART TWO

    • CHAPTERS 1-11
      (pp. 220-226)

      Now, thanks to my previous arguments about the changes and vicissitudes of the Homeric text and the sources of its variants, the way seems to be cleared to the second section of this essay, in which I shall set out the chief general precepts and examples for this sort of emendation. And in fact several have rightly pointed out that the method of the art of criticism must be varied and changed in many ways to fit the variety of talents and subjects on which it works. How great, then, will we think that the difference must be in Homer?...

  11. SUBSIDIA

    • 1. J. G. EICHHORN’S EINLEITUNG INS ALTE TESTAMENT
      (pp. 227-231)

      Some specimens follow of Eichhorn’sEinleitung. Chapter 12 and parts of 14, in Gollop’s translation, will reveal the general tenor of his approach. A section of chapter 152, on the Masoretic marginal directionQerē velo Kethib(literally “Read and not written”), which directs the reader to insert a word into a given passage of the Bible when reading it aloud or analyzing it, but not when copying the text proper, will show how he worked through the Masoretic evidence. And some sections of chapter 426 will show how he used the occurrence of two different names for God (Jehova and...

    • 2. WOLF’S CORRESPONDENCE WITH C. G. HEYNE
      (pp. 232-248)

      The following texts are excerpted from Wolf,Briefe,229-307. The page numbers of Peppmüller’s edition are given in brackets at the beginning of each selection.

      [Wolf’s purpose in this letter is to ask Heyne to produce a review of theProlegomena]:

      [230] In the year 1779 you were the first person to whom I presented my unorthodox thoughts on Homer. I did this in an essay which I gave you at the time of my departure from Göttingen in order somehow to earn the confidence with which at that time you showed me the prospect of a first job, on...

  12. BIBLIOGRAPHICAL ESSAYS
    (pp. 249-254)

    Wolf’s attack on the unity of Homer was only one episode, though a central one, in the creation of modern classical scholarship in Germany between ca. 1770 and ca. 1830. The reader who wishes to explore the wider context within which Wolf did his work can begin with the standard surveys of the history of classical scholarship: J. E. Sandys,A History of Classical Scholarship(Cambridge, 1903-8); U. von Wilamowitz-Moellendorff,History of Classical Scholarship[1921], tr. A. Harris, ed. H. Lloyd-Jones (London, 1982); and R. Pfeiffer,History of Classical Scholarship from 1300 to 1850(Oxford, 1976), best consulted in the...

  13. INDEX NOMINUM
    (pp. 255-262)
  14. INDEX LOCORUM
    (pp. 263-265)
  15. Back Matter
    (pp. 266-266)