Homeric Summaries in Plato

Yamagata, Naoko (2020). Homeric Summaries in Plato. In: de Fátima Silva, M; Bouvier, D and das Graças Augusto, M eds. A Special Model of Classical Reception: Summaries and Short Narratives. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing (In Press), pp. 22–33.

Abstract

Although Plato’s frequent use of Homeric quotations and references has been well documented, his use of summaries of Homeric episodes and passages in his writing has not been specifically examined and is worth closer attention. This paper focuses on three main examples: the summary of Achilles’ resolve to avenge Patroclus’ death in Apology 28c; a collection of short summaries of Homeric highlights at Ion 535B; Republic 393d-394a where Socrates summarises the episode of Chryses in Iliad 1. This study argues that although the way in which Plato summarises Homer varies, the resulting summaries have consistent agenda across the three dialogues examined.

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