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Callimachus’ Philology

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Chapter Summary

This essay surveys Callimachus’ scholarly writings. Although the exact titles and contents of Callimachus’ prose treatises are still disputed, his scholarship can be divided into four main categories: bibliography, paradoxography, aetiology, and onomastics. These categories frequently overlap, however, and scholarly comments, notes, and theories may be found everywhere in Callimachus’ poetry as well as in the (largely lost) prose works. The survey concludes by considering Callimachean scholarship as part of a larger Alexandrian intellectual project and offers several models for understanding the Hellenistic impulse to collect, label, and annotate the collective past of Greekspeaking peoples.

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