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Polyphemus in Greek and Latin poems

Author(s): Panajiotis Asimopulos

Journal: Holon
ISSN 1848-3518

Volume: 3;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 51;
Date: 2013;
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Keywords: Callimachus | Euripides | Homer | Ovid | Polyphemus | Theocritus | Vergil

This paper is devoted to an intertextual approach to the personality of the Cyclops Polyphemus through poetic works of ancient Greek and Latin authors. Since the comparative method constitutes a reliable condition for every cognitive process, at least so far as the human thought is able to comply with the new knowledge to the existing notions and terms, the distinct physiognomy of poetic inspiration is clarified, but also the structural similarities and fundamental differences related to this famous mythical person are illustrated. Having as a reference point the Homeric “Odyssey” and the cruelty and inhumanity attributed to Polyphemus, we experience the gradual alleviation of the negative features of his character and unexpectedly witness an emotionally wounded, romantic, even gentle and helpless creature. In this way an impressive bridging is held between religion axioms and sociopolitical parameters that are effectively and creatively embodied in poetic works.
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