Antimachus

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For other uses, see Antimachus (disambiguation).

Antimachus (Greek: Ἀντίμαχος), of Colophon or Claros, Greek poet and grammarian, flourished about 400 BC.[1]

Scarcely anything is known of his life. His poetical efforts were not generally appreciated, although he received encouragement from his younger contemporary Plato (Plutarch, Lysander, 18).[1]

His chief works were: an epic Thebais, an account of the expedition of the Seven against Thebes and the war of the Epigoni; and an elegiac poem Lyde, so called from the poet's mistress, for whose death he endeavoured to find consolation telling stories from mythology of heroic disasters (Plutarch, Consul, ad Apoll. 9; Athenaeus xiii. 597).[1]

Antimachus was the founder of "learned" epic poetry, and the forerunner of the Alexandrian school, whose critics allotted him the next place to Homer. He also prepared a critical recension of the Homeric poems.[1]

He is to be distinguished from Antimachus of Teos, a much earlier poet to whom the lost Cyclic epic Epigoni was apparently ascribed (though the attribution may result from confusion).

Fragments, ed. Stoll (1845); Bergk, Poetae Lyrici Graeci (1882); Kinkel, Fragmenta epicorum Graecorum (1877).

20th century ed: V.J. Matthews, Antimachus of Colophon, text and commentary (Leiden : Brill, 1996) ISBN 90-04-10468-2

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Attribution

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