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Euphorion et les mythes

 | 
Christophe Cusset
, 
Évelyne Prioux
, 
Hamidou Richer

Euphorion, entre Asie Mineure et Proche-Orient

Myth and history in Euphorion’s eastern tales

Enrico Magnelli

Abstract

De nombreux passages de l’œuvre d’Euphorion s’attachent à des sujets liés à l’Asie et au Proche-Orient, tout en prenant parfois soin de les lier, aussi, à la Grèce propre. Cette présence de sujets orientaux contraste en revanche avec l’absence complète de références à l’Égypte dans les fragments qui nous sont parvenus. Euphorion a-t-il tenté de créer une géographie poétique similaire à celle de ses modèles alexandrins, mais dont l’intérêt serait centré sur d’autres espaces ? Pareille démarche pourrait s’expliquer par un contexte de rédaction séleucide, mais aussi par un projet littéraire spécifique.

Testo integrale

  • 1 Thus Fraser 1956, p. 580, referring to Legrand 1924, p. 13-14, and Körte and Händel 1960, p. 263.
  • 2 I quote Euphorion’s fragments according to the numbering of both Powell 1925, p. 28-58 (supplement (...)
  • 3 Wilamowitz-Moellendorff 1907, p. 64, n. 1 (adding, however, that “solche Möglichkeiten helfen nich (...)
  • 4 Treves 1955, p. 48-54, took great pains to argue that Euphorion did in fact spend some time in Thr (...)
  • 5 The possibility that there were two poets called Nicander cannot be ruled out: but this needs not (...)
  • 6 For a brief survey cf. Magnelli 2002, p. 93-98.

1There is something missing in Euphorion’s fragments: Egypt. This is quite remarkable, and both Legrand and Körte pointed out, many decades ago, that Euphorion is “among the very few Hellenistic poets in regard to whom there is no trace of a direct connection with Ptolemaic Alexandria, and no sign of Ptolemaic patronage”.1 Some tiny evidence of such a connection (not a direct one, anyway) may indeed exist, if Wilamowitz was right in suggesting that the dedicatee of Euphorion’s Ἱππομέδων Μείζων (SH 416 = fr. 34 Lightfoot2) was the Spartan Hippomedon who ruled Thrace under Ptolemy III.3 This being uncertain in itself, it is even more speculative to assume that Euphorion actually enjoyed Hippomedon’s patronage, or was seeking for it.4 But this is not the point. What I find most striking is that, all Ptolemaic influences aside, not even a single allusion to Egyptian geography, history, or myths appears in some two hundred extant fragments of Euphorion. Egypt had an established place in Greek poetical tradition from the Odyssey onwards, and Hellenistic poets did not need to be under Ptolemaic influence to deal with Egyptian tales in their works: such is the case of Nicander, who appears to have spent his life between Colophon, Aetolia, and the Attalid court,5 and yet did not refrain – nor had any reason to – from inserting in his Theriaca (309-317) the story of Canobus, the helmsman of Menelaus’ ship, killed by a deadly snake near the Delta of the Nile and giving his name to the well-known Egyptian town. Nothing of this kind in Euphorion. It goes without saying that this may well be due to mere chance: less than 300 lines survive from Euphorion’s many poems (some of which probably were epyllia or the like, but others may have been quite longer6), and it would be far from anomalous that new papyrus finds would reveal a keen interest of his in Egyptian matters. Nonetheless, it is worth considering the possibility that the omission is intentional, and wondering whether other features of Euphorion’s poetry may point to the same conclusions.

  • 7 On the poem see Livrea 2002. Cf. also fr. dub. 45 Powell = spuria 209 Lightfoot, whose ascription (...)
  • 8 Sistakou 2008 (cf. also Sistakou 2004) offers an acute and sensible reading of several ‘Iliadic’ f (...)
  • 9 Fr. 75 Powell = fr. dub. 180 Lightfoot may also have to do with Hylas and his suitors, but its asc (...)
  • 10 The gruesome story of Astyages and Harpagus, clearly modeled upon Atreus’ mythical vengeance on Th (...)
  • 11 The story of Elpis and the Διόνυσος Κεχηνώς (fr. 19 Powell = 20 Lightfoot) and a brief mention of (...)
  • 12 Fr. 3 Van Groningen; 1 Clúa; 1 Acosta-Hughes/Cusset.

2If Egypt is missing, East is pervasive. In fact, many Euphorionic fragments deal with Eastern places and subjects. Some of them are quite predictable: nobody will be surprised at our poet writing on the Trojan saga (Ajax’s suicide, fr. 40 Powell = 44 Lightfoot and probably 41-42 Powell = 45-46 Lightfoot; Philoctetes, fr. 44 Powell = 48 Lightfoot;7 Trojan dynasties, Greek heroes, and many other details of the story, frs. 54-62, 66-72, 90-91, 106 Powell + SH 428 = 78-90 and 92-98 Lightfoot, add SSH 454D; possibly also the rivers of the Troad in fr. 46 Powell = 49 Lightfoot and the wreck of the Greek fleet in fr. 73 Powell = 99 Lightfoot)8 or the Argonautic myth (Cyzicus, frs. 4 and 7 Powell = 6 and 9 Lightfoot; Hylas, Amycus, the Mariandynoi, and the river Euarchus, frs. 76-79 Powell = 74-77 Lightfoot;9 maybe also Periclymenus, fr. 64 Powell = 91 Lightfoot). But there are several more, not always connected with the traditional Greek Heldensage and even referring to historical – if sometimes legendary – people and events (Astyages and Harpagus, SH 413.18 = fr. 24.18 Lightfoot; Semiramis, SH 415. i. 9-11 and fr. 81 Powell = frs. 26.i.9-11 and 115 Lightfoot; the Galatians, fr. 38 Powell = 42 Lightfoot). None of them is either strange in itself or unknown to an educated Hellenistic audience:10 yet all together they testify to Euphorion’s distinct interest in the Near East, and make all the more remarkable his apparent lack of interest in Egypt and Lybia.11 Especially worth noting is, in my view, that some fragments appear to have in common the idea of a strong cultural link between Eastern world and mainland Greece – primarily Athens. Such is the case of Stephanus of Byzantium, p. 581.12-14 Meineke (Euph. fr. 1 Powell = 3 Lightfoot12):

Σόλοι· Κιλικίας πόλις, ἡ νImageν Πομπηιούπολις· ἙκαταImageος Ἀσίᾳ [FGrHist 1 F 268]. κέκλεται δὲ ἀπὸ Σόλωνος, ὡς Εὐφορίων ἐν Ἀλεξάνδρῳ.

  • 13 All the sources are carefully collected by Gallo 1975, p. 193-195.
  • 14 Minor late sources in Gallo 1975, p. 193-194.
  • 15 Sykutris 1928.
  • 16 Gallo 1975, p. 187-192; 1976; Manfredini and Piccirilli 1986, p. 265-268; Noussia-Fantuzzi 2010, p (...)
  • 17 Van Groningen 1977, p. 20; Acosta-Hughes and Cusset 2012, p. 22, n. 3; cf. also Noussia-Fantuzzi 2 (...)

3According to Plutarch (Sol. 26), one ancient biography of Aratus (Vita Arati I, p. 7.16ff. Martin), the τι]νες recorded in the prose fragment POxy. 680 (3rd c. AD), and other much later sources, Solon was involved in the re-foundation of the Cyprian town Aipeia, whose name the local king changed into Soloi to honour his Athenian guest:13 this may be read against Strabo 14.6.3 (C 683), according to whom Cypriot Soloi κτίσμα δ᾿ ἐστὶ Φαλήρου καὶ Ἀκάμαντος Ἀθηναίων. The alternative tradition presenting him as the eponymous founder of Cilician Soloi is first attested in our fragment, then in Diogenes Laertius 1.51, in POxy. 680 (this appears to be the opinion of the writer himself), and in schol. Plat. Resp. 599e (p. 272 Greene).14 Sykutris’ opinion that the Cypriot tale was a later version stemming from the Cilician one15 has won little credit, and now most scholars consider Plutarch’s version earlier (possibly tracing back to either Hermippus or a source of his?) and, to some extent at least, more reliable.16 We cannot be sure that the Cilician version was coined by Euphorion himself, as some scholars believe: be this as it may, it surely was in tune with his own interests. It goes without saying that the etymology is absolutely fictitious, since Σόλοι cannot derive from Σόλων: as commentators rightly note, one would rather expect Σολωνία or Σολώνεια.17

  • 18 Meineke 1823, p. 56-57, and at greater length in Meineke 1843, p. 38-39.
  • 19 Whitehead 1994 has argued this persuasively.
  • 20 Poeta ineptus tamen et scit nihil, sed non est inutilis, according to Cicero (ad Att. 2.20.6 = SH (...)
  • 21 The passages are gathered as SH 25-32 and 34-37; cf. also Meineke’s Index scriptorum (1849, p. 725 (...)
  • 22 One could find a possible parallel for Stephanus’ alleged concision in the entry Ὑπερβόρειοι (p. 6 (...)
  • 23 Billerbeck 2008.
  • 24 He wrote under either Anastasius I (491-518: cf. Hemmerdinger 1997, p. 53) or Justinian I (527-565 (...)
  • 25 Cf. Magnelli 2002, p. 117-122, and more recently De Stefani 2006, p. 21-23. And the Eschmunên parc (...)
  • 26 Honigmann 1929, col. 2379-2393, provides a survey of Stephanus’ many sources.
  • 27 See Diller 1938; Billerbeck 2006, p. 5*-36*.
  • 28 Walbank 1979, p. 118; cf. Ruge 1927, col. 936.17ff. Eustathius, in his commentary on D. P. 875 (GG (...)

It must be added that according to two other Lives of Aratus (Vita III, p. 14.5-7 Martin; Vita IV, p. 19.2-3 M.) the Cilician Soloi ὠνομάσθαι φασὶν ἀπὸ Σόλωνος τοImage Λινδίου: but that Euphorion deals with this (otherwise unknown) Solon, as Meineke once thought,18 seems to me highly unplausible. Stephanus’ sentence κέκλεται δὲ ἀπὸ Σόλωνος, without further specification, clearly suggests the Athenian statesman, not his obscure Lindian namesake. Though often blamed by modern scholars for his uncritical attitude and occasional unreliability, Stephanus usually transmits his data with good accuracy:19 to mention only one instance out of many, when he quotes or mentions a not very widely known poet such as Alexander of Ephesus20 he calls him just Ἀλέξανδρος if the title of his work is added (ἐν Εὐρώπῃ, ἐν Ἀσίᾳ: one exception at p. 686.13 Meineke = Alex. Eph. SH 37), but when there is no title he always writes Ἀλέξανδρος ὁ Ἐφέσιος or Ἀλέξανδρος ὁ καὶ Λύχνος,21 to avoid confusion. Had he been thinking of the elusive Solon of Lindos, I would expect to find τοImage Λινδίου in his text (as in the Lives of Aratus quoted above).22 Nor am I sure that Stephanus knew Euphorion only from the indirect tradition (on this point I cannot subscribe to Margarethe Billerbeck’s authoritative opinion23). Shortly before his days,24 a number of works by Euphorion were still available–at least for a prodigiously learned writer like Nonnus, whose knowledge of the poet from Chalcis is beyond any doubt:25 Stephanus too, himself a considerably learned man,26 may have been able to read Euphorion and understand him properly. Followers of Meineke’s theory would better think that Stephanus’entry was badly mutilated. This is not unbelievable: the original text of the Ethnika was drastically abridged, as we can see comparing the small portions of its fuller version in the Coislinianus 228 (p. 240.12-259.3 Meineke = δ 139-ε 1 Billerbeck-Zubler) with the frustrating epitome preserved by other manuscripts.27 Yet one should also answer for Diogenes Laertius and the scholiast to Plato’s Republic, who do not just explicitly mention Solon of Athens, but add that he ὀλίγους τέ τινας τImageν Ἀθηναίων ἐγκατῴκισεν (D. L.: τοὺς κατοικισθέντας ὑπ’ αὐτοImage Ἀθηναίους in the scholion). Were such details invented sometime in the late Hellenistic or early Imperial age, after Euphorion’s text had been misunderstood? If we keep an eye on Ockham’s razor, we will be almost sure that the poet was concerned with the Athenian Solon, and that his alleged Lindian counterpart was the product of someone’s effort to blend this tradition with the one about Rhodians or, more specifically, Rhodians from Lindos taking part in the foundation of Soloi (Strabo 14.5.8, C 671; Polybius 21.24.11 with Walbank ad loc.28).

  • 29 Fr. 35 Van Groningen; 51 Clúa; 51 Acosta-Hughes/Cusset.

4Another passage worth discussing is schol. Dion. Per. 620, GGM II p. 452b. 10-16 (Euph. fr. 34 Powell = 37 Lightfoot29):

Ἀσία εἴρηται ἀπὸ τοImage ἄσιν πολλὴν ἔχειν. οἱ δὲ ἀπὸ Ἀσίας, μητρὸς Προμηθέως. καὶ ἡ Ἀττικὴ δὲ Ἀσία πρώην ἐκαλεImageτο, ὡς ἱστορεImage Διονύσιος ὁ Κυζικηνός· οὐ μὴν ἀλλὰ καὶ Ποσειδωνία ἐκαλεImageτο, ὡς Εὐφορίων φησίν·
ἈκτImageς δὲ παροίτερα φωνηθείσης·
οἱ μὲν δὴ ἐνέπουσι καὶ Ἀσίδα κικλῄσκεσθαι,
οἱ δὲ Ποσειδάωνος ἐπώνυμον αὐδηθImageναι.

  • 30 See Magnelli 2002, p. 94-95; Clúa 2000. The first to assign these lines to the Μοψοπία was Bernhar (...)
  • 31 Hollis 2009, p. 137, gathers a fair number of parallels.
  • 32 Cf. Friis Johansen and Whittle 1980, p. 429-430.
  • 33 Acosta-Hughes and Cusset 2012, p. 103, n. 309.
  • 34 A poet so named is credited with AP 7.78 = HE 1441ff. (an epitaph for Eratosthenes of Cyrene) by b (...)
  • 35 See Dickie 1998, p. 57-58.

The fragment probably comes from the Μοψοπία ἢ Ἄτακτα, apparently a collection of Attic myths and tales.30 Of these three ancient names of Attica, Ἀκτή is very well known:31 Ποσειδωνία is less widespread (cf. anyway Strabo 9.1.18, C 397), yet most easy to understand. Much more obscure is Ἀσίδα at line 2. Why should Attica be called ‘Asia’? (This is what Ἀσίς, attested in poetry from Hesiod, fr. 165.11 M.-W. onwards,32 invariably means.) Nearly all commentators were unable to find an answer. The most recent ones propose a very intriguing interpretation: “Strabon (IX, 1, 18) mentionne l’Ionie comme ancien nom de l’Attique: Euphorion joue sans doute sur la tradition des anciens noms de l’Attique en brouillant les pistes: il ne dit pas comme Strabon que l’Attique s’est appelée ‘Ionie’, mais il donne comme ancien nom Ἀσίς qui a désigné la région dénommée par la suite ‘Ionie’”.33 Euphorion’s οἱ μέν apparently reveals that he had some forerunners who also used this learned designation of Attica – perhaps a Dionysius of Cyzicus mentioned by the scholiast, though we totally ignore his chronology.34 At any rate, being an adopted citizen of Athens (Εὐφορίωνι τImage φύσει μὲν ΧαλκιδεImage, θέσει δὲ Ἀθηναίῳ: Helladius ap. Photius, Bibl. 279 = Euph. test. 3 Lightfoot35) did not prevent him from publishing this recondite piece of erudition about Attica’s ancient links with the East. Whether his Athenian acquaintances liked that or not, is a different question: but much time had elapsed since the Persian Wars, and the Attic obsession with autochthony was not what it used to be.

  • 36 Fr. 33 Van Groningen; 43 Clúa; 43 Acosta-Hughes/Cusset.

5Let me briefly discuss a third passage, i.e. schol. Clem. Alex., Protr. 2.11.3, p. 300.12-26 Stählin-Treu = 189.23-37 Marcovich (Euph. fr. 32 Powell = 35 Lightfoot36):

  • 37 Bergk 1846, p. 27.

ΚαρανImage τImage Ποιάνθους υἱImage ἐξ Ἄργους μέλλοντι ἀποικίαν στέλλειν ἐπὶ Μακεδονίαν εἰς Δελφοὺς ἰόντι ἔχρησεν ὁ Ἀπόλλων [225 Parke-Wormell]·
φράζεο, δImageε Καρανέ, νόῳ δ᾿ ἐμὸν ἔνθεο μImageθον·
ἐκπρολιπὼν Ἄργος τε καὶ Ἑλλάδα καλλιγύναικα
χώρει πρὸς πηγὰς Ἁλιάκμονος· ἔνθα δ᾿ ἂν αImageγας
βοσκομένας ἐσίδῃς πρImageτον, τόθι [Meineke: τότε codd.] τοι χρεών ἐστιν
ζηλωτὸν ναίειν αὐτὸν γενεάν τε πρόπασαν.
ἐκ δὴ τοImage χρησμοImage προθυμότερος γενόμενος [<ὁ> suppl. Wilamowitz] Καρανός, σύν τισιν Ἕλλησιν ἀποικίαν στειλάμενος ἐλθὼν εἰς Μακεδονίαν ἔκτισεν πόλιν καὶ Μακεδόνων ἐβασίλευσεν, καὶ τὴν πρότερον καλουμένην Ἔδεσσαν πόλιν Αἰγὰς [Meineke: αImageγας codd.] μετωνόμασεν ἀπὸ τImageν αἰγImageν. ᾠκεImageτο δὲ τὸ παλαιὸν ἡ Ἔδεσσα ὑπὸ ΦρυγImageν καὶ ΛυδImageν καὶ τImageν μετὰ Μίδου διακομισθέντων εἰς τὴν Εὐρώπην. ταImageτα Εὐφορίων ἱστορεImage ἐν τImage Ἱστίᾳ [Ἱστιαίᾳ Meineke] καὶ τImage Ἰνάχῳ [ἢ Ἰνάχῳ Bergk37: an καὶ <... ἐν> τImage Ἰνάχῳ?].

  • 38 Landucci Gattinoni 2008. Cf. also Huxley 1983.
  • 39 Van Groningen 1977, p. 97; Lightfoot 2009, p. 265, n. 67; Acosta-Hughes and Cusset 2012, p. 95, n. (...)
  • 40 Εὐφορίων […] ἐν τ(...)
  • 41 Now we know that Aigai is rather to be identified with Vergina: see e.g. Papazoglou 1988, p. 131-1 (...)
  • 42 There also were two cities named Aigai in the Near East (Hirschfeld 1893), but they have nothing t (...)

6A recent, careful study38 has shown that the legend of Caranus, attested elsewhere, reflects the effort of the Macedonian kings to assert their Greekness and legitimate their role in the Greek world. We will never know how much of this story was in Euphorion: the oracle, Caranus’ travel to Macedonia, the re-naming of the city, its earlier inhabitants?39 Add that it is unclear whether the scholiast refers to one or two works by him, or even to a work by Euphorion and another work by a different author.40 Yet it is worth considering the possibility that the mention of Phrygians and Lydians as the first inhabitants of Aigai traces back to him. In 304 BC Seleucus I Nicator founded a city in upper Mesopotamia on the site of an older Assyrian settlement, and named it Edessa after the Macedonian city of that name: if Euphorion identified the Macedonian Edessa with Aigai (as modern scholars too used to do until recent times41), or at least knew of such an opinion and used it for his own purposes, he could well conceive a far older ‘delta connection’ involving Greece, Macedonia, and the East42. Needless to say, this remains very speculative.

  • 43 Cf. Baldriga 1994 (the title mentions Mopsus alone, but the paper also deals with Calchas and Amph (...)
  • 44 Fr. 183 Van Groningen, 190 Clúa, 190 Acosta-Hughes/Cusset. Cf. Treves 1955, p. 59; Hollis 1994a, p (...)
  • 45 Hollis 1994b, p. 166.
  • 46 Hollis 1994b. Cf. Hollis 2006, p. 147-148; Bernard 1995, p. 354-382.
  • 47 Hollis 1992, p. 11, argues – rightly in my view – for the ascription of SH 418 to the Dionysus rat (...)
  • 48 Bowersock 1994, p. 157.
  • 49 Bowersock 1994, p. 159.
  • 50 Nicander at least mentioned it (fr. 97 Schneider), but probably in a poem of very different kind, (...)
  • 51 Barigazzi 1963, p. 422-423 (noting the similarity between Callimachus’ Hecale and Euphorion’s Dion (...)

7Other fragments can be read in the very same way, though we must always beware of overinterpretation. The myths of the seers Calchas, Mopsus, and Amphilochus, and the related foundation legends (Euph. frs. 97-98 Powell = 102-103 Lightfoot), also implied strong connections between East and West:43 Évelyne Prioux and Claude Pouzadoux treat them properly in their brilliant contributions to this volume, investigating their cultural and ideological meaning and rightly highlighting the importance of fr. 174 Powell = 119 Lightfoot44 on Laodice’s prediction about Seleucus I. Adrian Hollis acutely suggested that Euphorion’s treatment of the myth of Iphigenia (frs. 90-91 Powell = 85-86 Lightfoot) may have a Seleucid connection, since the ancient statue of Artemis supposedly brought by Iphigenia and Orestes to Brauron had been located by Seleucus at Laodicea on Sea, the city which he founded in honour of his mother.45 Hollis also made a good case for thinking that the myth on the origins of Apamea in [Oppian] Cyn. 2.100-158 derives from Euphorion.46 Even his Dionysus (frs. 13-17 Powell = 14-18 Lightfoot, and possibly SH 418, 421 = fr. 19a-b Lightfoot47) may be read in the light of the aims and interests of the Seleucids, as Stéphanie Wyler aptly shows in her contribution to this volume. Dionysus, “one of the two great representatives and ambassadors of international Hellenism”48 (the other being Heracles), was celebrated by Neoptolemus of Parion in a Διονυσιάς, by Theolytus of Methymna is his Βακχικὰ ἔπη, and by Dinarchus of Delos in a poem of unknown title (SH 379B)49, some of them possibly earlier than Euphorion. Whether they narrated the god’s triumph in India, we do not know:50 but it is remarkable that no fragment of Euphorion’s poem deals with the Far East. All the extant fragments record Attic demes and other places in mainland Greece, one (fr. 15 Powell = 16 Lightfoot) mentions a Lydian city.51 It looks like Euphorion’s Dionysus was moving from the Near East to the West – and Wyler rightly stresses the relevance that this may have had for, say, the celebration of Seleucus Nicator’s deeds.

  • 52 Fraser 1956 (p. 582: “a very extreme example of a misuse of evidence”); Lévêque 1958; Barigazzi 19 (...)
  • 53 Bing 2005.
  • 54 See Marinone 1997, p. 96-97.
  • 55 Πέρσην and Ἀσσύριον (as shown by both PHorak 4 and Et. Gen. α 1304 ~ EM α 1962 Lasserre-Livadaras) (...)
  • 56 This possibility is considered for fr. 506 by D’Alessio 2007, p. 795, n. 4.
  • 57 To say it with Jan Assmann (as Yannick Durbec kindly suggests to me).
  • 58 I am deeply grateful to the Editors – Évelyne Prioux, Hamidou Richer, and Christophe Cusset – for (...)

To be sure, I am not willing to walk in the steps of Piero Treves, who tried to place almost every extant fragment of Euphorion in a definite period of the poet’s career, thus reconstructing a ‘Macedonian’ phase of his poetry, a ‘Thracian/Ptolemaic’ one, and finally a ‘Seleucid’ one. His approach was rightly criticized by many a reviewer,52 and we do not need to revive it. In other words, I am not suggesting that all the fragments dealing with Eastern topics belong to the last decades of Euphorion’s life, when he was working in Antioch under Antiochus III the Great. Some of them are indeed likely to have been written in that period, in return for Antiochus’ patronage: Peter Bing has brilliantly demonstrated that the geographical distribution of stones in the Lithika-section of the New Posidippus reflects the territorial ambitions of the Ptolemaic empire,53 and Euphorion might have similar aims in shaping a Seleucid-oriented world. But this is, I think, only half the story. I am rather inclined to believe that Euphorion’s poetical geography preceded his Seleucid affiliation, and that the poet conceived it as a way of emulating, rather than imitating, his Alexandrian models. Callimachus mentions the East quite often, and contemporary history sometimes lurks behind literary topics. It is tempting to feel a derogatory nuance in his use of the word ‘Assyrian’: apart from the well known Catullus 66.12 (Callimachus, Aet. fr. 110 Pf. = 213 Massimilla) uastatum finis ierat Assyrios, concerning the Third Syrian War,54 frs. 505 Pf. τηλοImage ἀπ’ Ἀσσυρίων ἡμεδαπὴ στρατιή and 506 Pf. ἥμισυ μὲν Πέρσην, ἥμισυ δ’ Ἀσσύριον55 may also conceal allusions to the unending rivalry between Ptolemies and Seleucids;56 and the Ἀσσυρίου ποταμοImageο μέγας ῥόος of Ap. 108 is definitely unpleasant to the Callimachean taste. ‘Assyrian’ as an equivalent of ‘not Greek’ – only the Ptolemies are true heirs to Alexander’s Hellenic legacy. Euphorion does not speak ill of them (at least in the extant fragments), yet creates an alternative world, a ‘mnemotope’,57 whose focal points are Greece and Asia, neglecting Egypt and thus apparently excluding it from his cultural horizon. One of the most enthusiastic disciples of the great Alexandrian poets, he has used his vast mythological and geographical knowledge to produce highly refined poetry without Alexandria.58

Bibliografia

References

Acosta-Hughes and Cusset 2012: B. Acosta-Hughes and C. Cusset (eds.), Euphorion. Œuvre poétique et autres fragments, Paris, 2012.

Baldriga 1994: R. Baldriga, Mopso tra Oriente e Grecia: storia di un personaggio di frontiera, Quaderni urbinati di cultura classica, n.s., 46, 1994, p. 35-71.

Barbantani 2001: S. Barbantani, Φάτις νικηφόρος. Frammenti di elegia encomiastica nell’età delle Guerre Galatiche: Supplementum Hellenisticum 958 e 969, Milano, 2001.

Barigazzi 1949: A. Barigazzi, Sul fr. 9 Powell di Euforione, Studi italiani di filologia classica, 24, 1949, p. 21-27.

Barigazzi 1952: A. Barigazzi, Nuovi frammenti di Euforione, Studi italiani di filologia classica, 26, 1952, p. 149-168.

Barigazzi 1956: A. Barigazzi, Review of Treves, Euforione e la storia ellenistica, Athenaeum, 34, 1956, p. 372-376.

Barigazzi 1963: A. Barigazzi, Il Dionysos di Euforione, in Miscellanea di studi alessandrini in memoria di Augusto Rostagni, Torino, 1963, p. 416-454.

Bastianini 2002: G. Bastianini, Frammento inedito di glossario a un testo poetico ellenistico, in F. Montanari and L. Lehnus (dir.), Callimaque: sept exposés suivis de discussions, Vandœuvres-Genève, 2002, p. 271-273.

Bergk 1846: T. Bergk, Analectorum Alexandrinorum particula prima, Marburg, 1846 (repr. in his Kleine philologische Schriften, II, Halle, 1886, p. 202-221).

Bernard 1995: P. Bernard, I. Une légende de fondation hellénistique: Apamée sur l’Oronte d’après les Cynégétiques du Pseudo-Oppien. II. Paysages et toponymie dans le Proche-Orient hellénisé, Topoi, 5, 1995, p. 353-408.

Bernhardy 1828: G. Bernhardy, Dionysius Periegetes Graece et Latine, cum vetustis commentariis et interpretationibus, II, Leipzig, 1828.

Billerbeck 2006: M. Billerbeck, Stephani Byzantii Ethnica, I. Α-Γ, Berlin-New York, 2006.

Billerbeck 2008: M. Billerbeck, Sources et technique de citation chez Étienne de Byzance, Eikasmós, 19, 2008, p. 301-322.

Bing 2005: P. Bing, The Politics and Poetics of Geography in the Milan Posidippus, Section One: On Stones (AB 1-20), in K. Gutzwiller (dir.), The New Posidippus. A Hellenistic Poetry Book, Oxford, 2005, p. 119-140 (repr. in his The Scroll and the Marble. Studies in Reading and Reception in Hellenistic Poetry, Ann Arbor, 2009, p. 253-271).

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Note

1 Thus Fraser 1956, p. 580, referring to Legrand 1924, p. 13-14, and Körte and Händel 1960, p. 263.

2 I quote Euphorion’s fragments according to the numbering of both Powell 1925, p. 28-58 (supplemented by Lloyd-Jones and Parsons 1983, p. 196-233, and by Lloyd-Jones 2005, p. 52-59) and Lightfoot 2009, p. 189-465. When I discuss a fragment at some length, I also refer the reader in a footnote to Van Groningen 1977; Clúa 1992; Acosta-Hughes and Cusset 2012.

3 Wilamowitz-Moellendorff 1907, p. 64, n. 1 (adding, however, that “solche Möglichkeiten helfen nichts”: cf. Fraser 1956, p. 581, n. 2).

4 Treves 1955, p. 48-54, took great pains to argue that Euphorion did in fact spend some time in Thrace under Hippomedon’s wings. That his reconstruction was ill-founded is quite evident, and was duly pointed out by both Fraser 1956, p. 580-581, and Lévêque 1958, p. 435-436 (aptly remarking, at p. 436, that even in case that Wilamowitz’s suggestion was right, “en pourrait-on pour autant inférer qu’il existait des rapports entre Euphorion et les Lagides, maîtres lointains d’Hippomédon?”).

5 The possibility that there were two poets called Nicander cannot be ruled out: but this needs not detain us here.

6 For a brief survey cf. Magnelli 2002, p. 93-98.

7 On the poem see Livrea 2002. Cf. also fr. dub. 45 Powell = spuria 209 Lightfoot, whose ascription to Euphorion was rejected by Giangiulio 1993, and is now reasserted by Napolitano 2011.

8 Sistakou 2008 (cf. also Sistakou 2004) offers an acute and sensible reading of several ‘Iliadic’ fragments by Euphorion.

9 Fr. 75 Powell = fr. dub. 180 Lightfoot may also have to do with Hylas and his suitors, but its ascription to Euphorion is doubtful: see Magnelli 2002, p. 127-128 and n. 2 (with previous literature), and most recently Lightfoot 2009, p. 403, n. 203.

10 The gruesome story of Astyages and Harpagus, clearly modeled upon Atreus’ mythical vengeance on Thyestes (Burkert 1983, p. 103-109), was known from Herodotus 1.117-119. On Semiramis – whose husband Ninus was the subject of a choliambic poem by Phoenix of Colophon, fr. 1 Powell – see Pascale Linant de Bellefonds’s detailed paper in this volume. Hellenistic poets’ concern with the Galatians was by no means confined to Callimachus’ Hymn to Delos (171-187, cf. also fr. 379 Pf.): see Barbantani 2001, with full discussion and bibliography.

11 The story of Elpis and the Διόνυσος Κεχηνώς (fr. 19 Powell = 20 Lightfoot) and a brief mention of stormy Λίβες (SH 415.i.23 = fr. 26.i.23 Lightfoot) appear to be the only references to North Africa in Euphorion’s extant fragments.

12 Fr. 3 Van Groningen; 1 Clúa; 1 Acosta-Hughes/Cusset.

13 All the sources are carefully collected by Gallo 1975, p. 193-195.

14 Minor late sources in Gallo 1975, p. 193-194.

15 Sykutris 1928.

16 Gallo 1975, p. 187-192; 1976; Manfredini and Piccirilli 1986, p. 265-268; Noussia-Fantuzzi 2010, p. 301-303.

17 Van Groningen 1977, p. 20; Acosta-Hughes and Cusset 2012, p. 22, n. 3; cf. also Noussia-Fantuzzi 2010, p. 301. Dionysius in his Bassarica (fr. 13 Livrea, quoted by Stephanus of Byzantium just a few lines later) called the town Σώλεια, and Livrea 1973, p. 25, wonders whether he drew on Euphorion.

18 Meineke 1823, p. 56-57, and at greater length in Meineke 1843, p. 38-39.

19 Whitehead 1994 has argued this persuasively.

20 Poeta ineptus tamen et scit nihil, sed non est inutilis, according to Cicero (ad Att. 2.20.6 = SH 24).

21 The passages are gathered as SH 25-32 and 34-37; cf. also Meineke’s Index scriptorum (1849, p. 725: delete ‘698, 4’).

22 One could find a possible parallel for Stephanus’ alleged concision in the entry Ὑπερβόρειοι (p. 650.3ff. Meineke), where the epitome reads Ἀντίμαχος δὲ τοὺς αὐτούς φησιν εImageναι τοImageς ἈριμασποImageς: according to Cordano 2004, this would refer to the epic poet Antimachus of Teos, the supposed author of the Epigoni, whose interest in the Hyperboreans is attested by Hdt. 4.32 (Epig. fr. 2 Davies = 2 Bernabé). But this is far from certain: if recent scholarship does not favour Ruhnkenius’ emendation of Ἀντίμαχος into Καλλίμαχος, there is no reason to deny that Stephanus could refer to the (much more famous) Antimachus of Colophon (fr. 141 Matthews: see Bolton 1962, p. 23-24, and Matthews 1996, p. 336-338; cf. also Massimilla 1992, p. 424).

23 Billerbeck 2008.

24 He wrote under either Anastasius I (491-518: cf. Hemmerdinger 1997, p. 53) or Justinian I (527-565: so Billerbeck 2006, p. 3*; on this point cf. also the detailed review by Neri 2008).

25 Cf. Magnelli 2002, p. 117-122, and more recently De Stefani 2006, p. 21-23. And the Eschmunên parchment BKT V 1 no 273, preserving passages from two different works by our poet (frs. 9 and 51 Powell = 11 and 71 Lightfoot: not from the same poem, see e.g. Barigazzi 1949, p. 26-27), shows that in the 5th century AD Euphorionic poetry was still copied on manuscripts of good quality.

26 Honigmann 1929, col. 2379-2393, provides a survey of Stephanus’ many sources.

27 See Diller 1938; Billerbeck 2006, p. 5*-36*.

28 Walbank 1979, p. 118; cf. Ruge 1927, col. 936.17ff. Eustathius, in his commentary on D. P. 875 (GGM II p. 372.1-2), is aware of both traditions: λέγονται δὲ Σόλοι κατά τινας ἀπὸ Σόλωνος [probably from Stephanus of Byzantium, whose work he used extensively for his commentary on Dionysius: see Billerbeck 2006, p. 33*]. οἱ δὲ ἈχαιImageν καὶ Ῥοδίων κτίσμα τὴν πόλιν φασί.

29 Fr. 35 Van Groningen; 51 Clúa; 51 Acosta-Hughes/Cusset.

30 See Magnelli 2002, p. 94-95; Clúa 2000. The first to assign these lines to the Μοψοπία was Bernhardy 1828, p. 1007.

31 Hollis 2009, p. 137, gathers a fair number of parallels.

32 Cf. Friis Johansen and Whittle 1980, p. 429-430.

33 Acosta-Hughes and Cusset 2012, p. 103, n. 309.

34 A poet so named is credited with AP 7.78 = HE 1441ff. (an epitaph for Eratosthenes of Cyrene) by both the Palatine and the Planudean Anthology (cf. Gow and Page 1965, p. 231). If he is identical with the Dionysius who wrote about Ἀττική / Ἀσία, he must have been slightly younger than Euphorion, since Eratosthenes died at 80 near the end of the 3rd century BC or shortly thereafter.

35 See Dickie 1998, p. 57-58.

36 Fr. 33 Van Groningen; 43 Clúa; 43 Acosta-Hughes/Cusset.

37 Bergk 1846, p. 27.

38 Landucci Gattinoni 2008. Cf. also Huxley 1983.

39 Van Groningen 1977, p. 97; Lightfoot 2009, p. 265, n. 67; Acosta-Hughes and Cusset 2012, p. 95, n. 286.

40 Εὐφορίων […] ἐν τImage Ἱστίᾳ καὶ <…ἐν> τImage Ἰνάχῳ? See Magnelli 2002, p. 94, n. 4.

41 Now we know that Aigai is rather to be identified with Vergina: see e.g. Papazoglou 1988, p. 131-134 (though I do not share her view on our scholion, p. 127, n. 10), and Hatzopoulos 1996.

42 There also were two cities named Aigai in the Near East (Hirschfeld 1893), but they have nothing to do here.

43 Cf. Baldriga 1994 (the title mentions Mopsus alone, but the paper also deals with Calchas and Amphilochus). Previous literature on such topics in Euphorion include Barigazzi 1952; Camassa 1980; Ragone 1990, p. 94-112.

44 Fr. 183 Van Groningen, 190 Clúa, 190 Acosta-Hughes/Cusset. Cf. Treves 1955, p. 59; Hollis 1994a, p. 13; 1994b, p. 165.

45 Hollis 1994b, p. 166.

46 Hollis 1994b. Cf. Hollis 2006, p. 147-148; Bernard 1995, p. 354-382.

47 Hollis 1992, p. 11, argues – rightly in my view – for the ascription of SH 418 to the Dionysus rather than to the Mopsopia.

48 Bowersock 1994, p. 157.

49 Bowersock 1994, p. 159.

50 Nicander at least mentioned it (fr. 97 Schneider), but probably in a poem of very different kind, like the Metamorphoses: see Gow and Scholfield 1953, p. 215.

51 Barigazzi 1963, p. 422-423 (noting the similarity between Callimachus’ Hecale and Euphorion’s Dionysus in their concern with Attic topography: cf. also Hollis 1992, p. 10-11) and 446; Clúa 1991; 2005, p. 121-134. There is a mention of an Indian tribe at fr. 168 Powell = 172 Lightfoot, but this seems not to have to do with the Dionysus (Scheidweiler 1908, p. 15, rather assigned it to the Ἀλέξανδρος, assuming that the latter was a poem on Alexander the Great).

52 Fraser 1956 (p. 582: “a very extreme example of a misuse of evidence”); Lévêque 1958; Barigazzi 1956; Vian 1957.

53 Bing 2005.

54 See Marinone 1997, p. 96-97.

55 Πέρσην and Ἀσσύριον (as shown by both PHorak 4 and Et. Gen. α 1304 ~ EM α 1962 Lasserre-Livadaras), not Πέρσαι and Ἀσσύριοι (printed by Pfeiffer): see Bastianini 2002, p. 272; Menci 2004 (Raffaele Luiselli’s thorough monograph on this interesting text is hoped to appear in the next future).

56 This possibility is considered for fr. 506 by D’Alessio 2007, p. 795, n. 4.

57 To say it with Jan Assmann (as Yannick Durbec kindly suggests to me).

58 I am deeply grateful to the Editors – Évelyne Prioux, Hamidou Richer, and Christophe Cusset – for both their kind invitation to the 2012 Conference and the friendly patience they had with my repeated delays in sending them the final version of this paper; and to all the scholars who took part in the discussion and helped me to improve my work. All the remaining inadequacies are my own fault.

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