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Defence of poetry

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 3 July 1980

Enemies of Poetry 
by W.B. Stanford.
Routledge, 181 pp., £8.95, February 1980, 0 7100 0460 5
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The Idea of a Theatre: the Greek Experience 
by M.I. Finley.
British Museum, 16 pp., £95, February 1980, 0 7141 1267 4
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... Professor Stanford, who this year retires from the Regius Chair of Greek at Trinity College, Dublin after 40 years in office, feels that ‘creative literature is being used more and more as material for history or archaeology or psychology.’ He therefore sets out to defend the poetic element in literature against disparagement and neglect. He cites much modern as well as ancient literature, and seems to wish his book to be relevant to modern as well as ancient poetry, but much of what he says seems principally concerned with the case of Greek studies ...

Facing both ways

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 19 August 1993

Bisexuality in the Ancient World 
by Eva Cantarella, translated by Cormac O Cuilleanain.
Yale, 284 pp., £19.95, September 1992, 0 300 04844 0
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... The Italian original of Bisexuality in the Ancient World appeared in 1988, and several new treatments of the topic have appeared since then. First, Kenneth Dover published in The Greeks and their Legacy, the second volume of his collected papers, an article in which he put the case against the theory, lately revived, that the favourable Greek attitude to homosexuality derived from a phase of history in which a young male was prepared for the rites de passage from which he would emerge as a full warrior by the tuition of an older male who was his lover ...

Prodigious Powers

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 21 January 1982

The Greeks and their Heritages 
by Arnold Toynbee.
Oxford, 334 pp., £12.50, October 1981, 0 19 215256 4
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... Conference seriously considered the possibility of handing back the Imperial city to the Greeks. Lloyd George was captivated by the charismatic leader of a race living near to sea and mountains with whom he had much in common, Eleftherios Venizelos, and only Edward Montagu’s exaggerated fears of a ‘Khilafats’ agitation in India seem to have led him to ...

Theories of Myth

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 19 March 1981

Structure and History in Greek Mythology and Ritual 
by Walter Burkert.
California, 226 pp., £9, April 1980, 0 520 03771 5
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Myth and Society in Ancient Greece 
by Jean-Pierre Vernant, translated by Janet Lloyd.
Harvester, 242 pp., £24, February 1980, 9780391009158
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... Until a comparatively short time ago most books purporting to deal with Greek mythology were content only to relate the myths, fighting shy of any attempt to explain that part of their significance which is not apparent on the surface. The proliferation of theories of myth which started about 1830 and finished, roughly speaking, at the beginning of the First World War was followed by a positivist reaction ...

Gods and Heroes

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 18 December 1980

Sophocles: An Interpretation 
by R.P. Winnington-Ingram.
Cambridge, 346 pp., £25, February 1980, 0 521 22672 4
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... offers us a study of Sophocles that is not likely to be improved upon for many years. John Jones has rightly protested against the mistranslation of Aristotle that gave authority to the opinion that each tragedy must have a single ‘hero’, in the sense of a central character in relation to whom the whole action must be viewed. But each Sophoclean ...

Eminent Athenians

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 1 October 1981

The Greek Heritage in Victorian Britain 
by Frank Turner.
Yale, 461 pp., £18.90, April 1981, 0 300 02480 0
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... It is natural to contrast this book with The Victorians and Ancient Greece, by Richard Jenkyns, reviewed by me in the issue of this journal for 21 August-3 September 1980 (Vol. 2, No 16). Mr Jenkyns is a Classical scholar and a smooth and polished writer; I wrote that he ‘offers a great deal of information, clearly and pleasingly’. Professor Turner is a historian, the author of a study of the impact of scientific naturalism on Victorian England; he describes Macaulay’s style as ‘elegant’, and though he writes clearly enough, the adjective is not one that fits his own ...

Glaucus and Ione

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 17 April 1980

The Last Days of Pompeii 
by Edward George Bulwer-Lytton.
Sidgwick, 522 pp., £6.95, December 1979, 0 283 98587 9
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... The recent Pompeii exhibition has been a success in America; and this is why we are offered a handsome new edition of Bulwer-Lytton’s novel, based upon one produced at the Officina Bodoni in Verona for the Limited Editions Club. Sixteen reproductions of Pompeian paintings from the catalogue of the exhibition illustrate the book; there are also some somewhat drab woodcuts by Kurt Craemer ...

Homer’s Skill

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 2 September 1982

Homer, Iliad XXIV 
by Colin Macleod.
Cambridge, 161 pp., £15, March 1982, 9780521243537
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... The thorough understanding of a difficult text, even of one written in one’s own language, may be made far easier by a good commentary. Eliot himself provided, if not a commentary, useful notes upon The Waste Land, and an Oxford don, John Fuller, has written an excellent commentary on Auden’s poems. In the case of a text written in an ancient language, a commentary is particularly useful ...

Homage to Scaliger

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 17 May 1984

Joseph Scaliger: A Study in the History of Classical Scholarship 
by Anthony Grafton.
Oxford, 359 pp., £27.50, June 1983, 9780198148500
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... Joseph Scaliger (1540-1609) was a towering figure in the history of European scholarship. During the first half of his career, he virtually created the systematic study of early Latin; during the second, using Oriental as well as Greek and Latin sources, he laid the foundations of our knowledge of the chronology of the ancient world. Born and brought up at Agen in the west of France, he was the son of Julius Caesar Scaliger, a Latin scholar of distinction, who claimed to be descended from those Della Scalas who were lords of Verona during the Middle Ages ...

What the Romans did

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 5 February 1987

English Classical Scholarship: Historical Reflections on Bentley, Porson and Housman 
by C.O. Brink.
James Clark, 243 pp., £11.95, February 1986, 0 227 67872 9
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Latin Poets and Roman Life 
by Jasper Griffin.
Duckworth, 226 pp., £24, January 1986, 0 7156 1970 5
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The Mirror of Myth: Classical Themes and Variations 
by Jasper Griffin.
Faber, 144 pp., £15, February 1986, 0 571 13805 5
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... Classical education is one thing, critical scholarship is another, and in his sketch of the history of Classical education in England, built around a detailed treatment of its three most celebrated figures, Professor Brink is concerned above all to describe and to make a case for the element of critical scholarship that Classical education may contain ...

Syme’s Revolution

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 24 January 1980

Roman Papers 
by Ronald Syme, edited by E. Badian.
Oxford, 878 pp., £35, November 1980, 0 19 814367 2
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... During the fifty years that have elapsed since the publication of the earliest of the essays collected in these volumes, there has been a revolution in the study of Roman history in which Ronald Syme has played a part comparable with that of Augustus in the revolution which his most famous book describes. When his career began, that study was still dominated by the gigantic figure of Theodor Mommsen, who was born in 1817 and died in 1903, the year of Syme’s birth ...

Feet on the mantelpiece

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 21 August 1980

The Victorians and Ancient Greece 
by Richard Jenkyns.
Blackwell, 386 pp., £15, June 1980, 0 631 10991 9
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... Until the 18th century modern Europe had in the main seen Ancient Greece through Latin spectacles. Important advances in Greek studies had been made, but their effect had been restricted, since few were able to read the language easily – in particular, the difficult language of the greatest writers. The first country in which serious efforts were made to see Ancient Greece directly was Germany ...

A.E. Housman and Biography

Hugh Lloyd-Jones, 22 November 1979

A.E. Housman 
by Richard Perceval Graves.
Routledge, 304 pp., £9.75
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... There is, as Richard Graves points out, no general biography of Housman. The books about him by Laurence Housman, Grant Richards and Percy Withers are valuable, because these men knew Housman and could describe him: but they are not biographies. George Watson’s A.E. Housman: A Divided Life is more like one, but it is not quite one; of Norman Marlow and Maude Hawkins I say nothing ...

Modern Prejudice

M.I. Finley, 2 December 1982

Blood for the Ghosts: Classical Influences in the 19th and 20th Centuries 
by Hugh Lloyd-Jones.
Duckworth, 312 pp., £24, May 1982, 0 7156 1500 9
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Classical Survivals: The Classics in the Modern World 
by Hugh Lloyd-Jones.
Duckworth, 184 pp., £18, May 1982, 0 7156 1517 3
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History of Classical Scholarship 
by U. von Wilamowitz-Moellendorf, edited by Hugh Lloyd-Jones, translated by Alan Harris.
Duckworth, 189 pp., £18, February 1982, 0 7156 0976 9
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... Of the 53 short essays, book reviews, lectures and obituaries assembled in Hugh Lloyd-Jones’s two volumes, two were published in the year before he assumed the Regius Professorship of Greek in the University of Oxford, one was his Inaugural Lecture of 1960, and the remainder were written subsequently ...

Tribute to Trevor-Roper

A.J.P. Taylor, 5 November 1981

History and Imagination: Essays in honour of H.R. Trevor-Roper 
edited by Hugh Lloyd-Jones, Valerie Pearl and Blair Worden.
Duckworth, 386 pp., £25, October 1981, 9780715615706
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... or are most within my range. We start with Homer and who wrote his poems. This essay by Professor Lloyd-Jones demonstrates anew the difference between ancient and modern scholarship which we often forget. We modernists have our views constantly disturbed by the discovery of new evidence. Classical scholarship consists of ...

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