Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-55597f9d44-xbgml Total loading time: 0.992 Render date: 2022-08-12T17:36:36.268Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "useNewApi": true } hasContentIssue true

Book contents

9 - Sympotic Praise (2002)

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  11 December 2021

Ewen Bowie
Affiliation:
University of Oxford
Get access

Summary

In Greece from the seventh to the fifth centuries BC the symposium was an important institution both for the social and political life of men from prosperous households and for the creation of songs that constitute a significant portion of our surviving archaic poetry. Between seven and seventeen men, mostly in their early or later teens – παῖδες, ‘boys’, or μειράκια, ‘youths’ – and νέοι, ‘young men’, in their twenties (or sometimes even their thirties) – would recline on couches to engage in the ritualised consumption of wine and to enjoy entertainment. This entertainment provided either by their own conversation, singing and sympotic games like κότταβος, or by the musical, gymnastic and sexual diversions offered by ἑταῖραι, female entertainers.1 Although light food was on offer, drinking was the central and defining mode of communal consumption, and the symposium was clearly distinguishable from a banquet.2 Much light is thrown on sympotic entertainments by painted vases, and their evidence has been brilliantly interpreted by Francois Lissarrague in his book Un flot d’images.3 Only from the fifth and fourth centuries BC do we find texts that set out to report the subjects of sympotic conversation (above all Aristophanes’ Wasps, and the Symposia of Plato and Xenophon) but comparison of these with the texts of poetry that was composed for sympotic performance, chiefly sung performance, suggests that these poetic texts are a fair guide to the topics that figured in archaic conversation too.4

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

  • Sympotic Praise (2002)
  • Ewen Bowie, University of Oxford
  • Book: Essays on Ancient Greek Literature and Culture
  • Online publication: 11 December 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781107415423.012
Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

  • Sympotic Praise (2002)
  • Ewen Bowie, University of Oxford
  • Book: Essays on Ancient Greek Literature and Culture
  • Online publication: 11 December 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781107415423.012
Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Sympotic Praise (2002)
  • Ewen Bowie, University of Oxford
  • Book: Essays on Ancient Greek Literature and Culture
  • Online publication: 11 December 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781107415423.012
Available formats
×