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Natura Artis Magistra. Dionysius On Natural Style, Syntax And Word Order

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Chapter Summary

This chapter concentrates on Dionysius? views on natural style, syntax and word order, which are of course closely related. It argues that we can trace a development in Dionysius? analysis of the styles that he regards as natural or unnatural. In the early works, Dionysius merely describes certain plain and simple passages as natural, and he characterises the more figured style as ?unnatural?. In the later works, Dionysius adopts a syntactic framework, including a technical terminology, which allows him to be more precise about the exact nature of the passages that he considers to be natural or unnatural. The chapter argues that the concept of natural word order in Comp. 5 is largely determined by Stoic ideas. Finally, it compares Dionysius? ideas with some other ancient views on natural word order, namely those of the rhetoricians and critics ?Demetrius?, ?Longinus? and Quintilian.

Keywords: Dionysius; natural style; syntax; word order



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