Author Archives: Steve Jenkin

Pindaric Ode in honour of Olympic Rower Cath Bishop

This previously unpublished Pindaric Ode was composed in Latin by Alan Treloar (1919-2011), a well-known Australian Classical polyglot. It was one of several he wrote in letters to me, this one in respect of my daughter, Cath Bishop, when she rowed for Great Britain in the 2000 Olympic Games in Australia. Cath went on to […]

Sappho Fragment 58 (Contributed by Andrew Bellon)

Some of the text was newly recovered from a Cologne University scroll. The scroll was used as Egyptian mummy cartonnage and is the earliest known Sappho text, written some 300 years after her death. Nearly the whole poem has been recovered by combining other fragments, known since 1922. This process of recovering lost texts is […]

Sappho Fragment 2, ‘The apple grove’ (Contributed by Andrew Bellon)

The musical language of this fragment has always haunted me, especially the second stanza. The ἐν δ’ ὔδωρ ψῦχρον κελάδει δι’ ὔσδων μαλίνων, creates a startling and sonorous spatial depth that for me is one of the most remarkable lines in Greek poetry. Andrew Bellon      …ὀρράνοθεν …κατίοι[σα δεῦρυ μ†μ’ ἐς Κρητας .π[ ]ναῦον […]

Let it Go (Disney’s Frozen) in Classical Greek (Contributed by Students of the University of Auckland)

This is a hilarious Greek take on the Disney song from Frozen by Classics students at the University of Auckland. Enjoy!   χιων λαμπει λευκη ἐφ ὁρου οὐ στιβος τις ἐστι που ἐρημιας βασιλεια δοκω δ’ εἰναι ποτνια ψοφει ἀνεμος ὡσπερ φρην δινευουσα οὐκ ἐδυνηθην πειρουσ’ ἰσχειν περ μη τους ἐα εἰσοραν δη ἰσθι καλη […]

Virgil Aeneid 2.708-40 (Contributed by Carla Jennings)

I think that this is one of the most moving passages in The Aeneid. It focuses on Aeneas trying to save his family which is not only something very poignant but also quite surprising given that it comes in a story in part focused on battles and war where you don’t necessarily get to see […]

Pliny the Younger, Ep.7.27.5 – 7.27.11 (contributed by Darren Lester)

I re-encountered this passage on Hallowe’en 2014, a few years after I first read it, while writing a small article on the history and evolution of the horror story. On reading it again, I was struck by its elegant simplicity and use of so many elements that we might consider to be cliché (ghost haunting […]

Horace Odes III.12 (contributed by Terry Walsh)

A beguiling lyric, Horace’s unique poem in this metre, and one does not even know how to divide up the verses. Who is talking and to whom? Is Neobule (a.k.a. Planning-novelties) talking to herself? If she is, then is she also, metaphorically, the boar of the last stanza…..? Terry Walsh Miserarum est neque amori dare […]

Menander, Theophoroumene fr. 1 (Contributed by Ben Cartlidge)

When I began my doctorate on the language of Menander, my first task, naturally enough, was to read all of Menander (I never accomplished my goal of learning all Menander by heart). When I read this fragment, I suddenly understood why people had been so fascinated by Menander over the centuries. Fragments always provoke curiosity, […]

Ibycus 7 (contributed by Mariangela Labate)

A lover is like an old horse reluctant to race In this fragment Ibycus is worried about being once again a victim of Love and of his irresistibile enticements, just like an old horse who is reluctant to race, despite a glorious past, with plenty of success. Love is represented as an obscure, irrational, magical […]

Poppies in Classical Poetry – Homer, Catullus, Virgil, Dante (contributed by Jane Mason and David Bevan)

Homer’s simile describes the death of a minor character, shot by mistake by Teucer when aiming at Hector. Catullus’ poem begins with a bitter and crude invective against his unfaithful mistress, so that the tender description of the flower comes as a sudden contrast. Virgil combines these two and creates an even more poignantly beautiful […]