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Vagrancy, Archery, and Savagery

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The article argues that Lucian's references to Scythians is based on well-established literary patterns and are intended to create various rhetorical effect. First, the article examines how Lucian's depiction of Scythians in passing remarks consists of a few elements: vagrancy, archery, and savagery. These elements may obtain positive or negative value according to the text's theme. Second, the article claims the three dialogues Anakharsis, The Scythian, and Toxaris, where the Scythian motive constitutes the narrative frame, must be regarded as continuations of the passing references, and shows how the motive is used differently in the three texts according to a specific agenda.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2019

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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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