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otium Campanum – Silius im Ruhestand (Plin. epist. 3,7), Hannibal in Capua (Sil. 11)

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In Epistles 3,7, Pliny the Younger gives a short account of the life of Silius Italicus, who had recently committed suicide at his Neapolitan villa. Scholarship has not only considered this letter as a rather critical and unsympathetic description of the epic poet's vita, but has also read some of its information (for example Silius' veneration of Vergil and his passion for antiquities) to Silius' poetics in general.

In this paper, I shall highlight one specific intertextual connection – not proposed to date – between this epistle and the Capua episode in Book 11 of Silius' ,,Punica". I shall show that Pliny the Younger, concurring with Martial's similar representation of Silius (Epigr. 4,14), has to some extent modelled Silius' retirement in Campania upon Hannibal's enervating winter in the luxurious city of Capua.
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Language: German

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 October 2017

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  • Hermes, founded in 1866 and currently edited by Siegmar Döpp, Karl-Joachim Hölkeskamp and Adolf Köhnken, is an international, peer-reviewed journal on Greek and Roman antiquity. It focuses on linguistics, literature as well as history. It features original articles in English, German, French and Italian.
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