The aim of this volume is to study Silius’ poem as an important step in the development of the Roman historical epic tradition. The Punica is analyzed as transitional segment between the beginnings of Roman literature in the Republican age (Naevius and Ennius) and Claudian’s panegyrical epic in late antiquity, shedding light on its ‘inclusiveness’ and its peculiar, internal dialectic between antiquarian taste and problematic actualization. This is an innovative attempt to connect epic poems and authors belonging to different ages, to frame the development of the literary genre, according to its specific aims and interests throughout the centuries.
Antony Augoustakis is Professor of Classics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in Urbana, Illinois, US. His research interests include Latin imperial epic, Roman comedy and historiography, women in antiquity, classical reception, and gender theory. He is the author of many monographs and edited volumes on various topics in classical literature.
Marco Fucecchi is Associate professor of Latin language and literature at the University of Udine (Italy). His research interests include Latin literature from the Augustan age to the Ist century CE, with particular regard to epic poetry. He is the author of some monographs on Flavian epic poems (Valerius Flaccus’ Argonautica and Silius’ Punica) as well as many articles on various topics in Latin literature.
Contributors are Thomas Baier, Neil W. Bernstein, Sergio Casali, Paolo Esposito, Filippo Fabbri, Alison Keith, Nicola Lanzarone, Gesine Manuwald, Raymond Marks, Stefano Poletti, Angeliki N. Roumpou, Clayton Schroer, Claire Stocks.
Edited by J.J.H. Klooster (University of Groningen), K.M. Coleman (Harvard University), R. Gagné (University of Cambridge), C.C. de Jonge (Leiden University), C. Pieper (Leiden University), T. Reinhardt (Oxford University)
"The editors write that they “hope that this collection will continue the discussion of the tradition of historical epic poetry in Rome and open up further avenues of research on Silius Italicus and the Punica in the future” (p. 15). I think they have absolutely succeeded in this regard. [...] To sum up, this book is highly recommended for everyone dealing with Latin literature. I am sure that students and scholars will benefit enormously from this volume and I am confident that Silius Italicus’ poem will continue to reaffirm his position within the academic curriculum." Vicente Flores Militello, BMCR 2023.03.10.
Abbreviations Notes on Contributors
Introduction: Silius Italicus and the Tradition of the Roman Historical Epos Antony Augoustakis and Marco Fucecchi
Part 1 The Historical Epic Tradition
Silius Italicus and the Conventions of Historical Epic at Rome Gesine Manuwald
Silius Italicus between Epos and Historiography Paolo Esposito
Part 2 Rethinking Roman ‘Mythical History’
Silius Ciceronianus: Regulus as a Reflection of Cicero in Punica 6 Thomas Baier
Silius Italicus and Ovid’s Roman History Raymond Marks
Claudian’s Silius Neil W. Bernstein
Part 3 Historical Challenges to ‘National’ Epic
Silius Italicus as an Interpreter of Virgil: Dido and Anna Sergio Casali
Pompey and Aemilius Paulus, or the Epic Genre between Lucan and Silius Italicus Nicola Lanzarone
From the Rubicon to the Alps: Re-reading Eumolpus’ Caesar in Light of Silius Italicus’ Hannibal Stefano Poletti
Part 4 Viewing Roman History (and Literature) from the Inside
Scaevola’s aristeia: A Complementary Reworking of a Historical Source and the Epic Tradition Filippo Fabbri
Exul in orbe toto, or, How to Map Future Power in Silius Italicus Clayton A. Schroer
Temples of Song in Silius Italicus Alison Keith
Romuleos superabit voce nepotes: Remembering Romulus in Silius Italicus Claire Stocks
Hannibal Redivivus: Fear and Haunting Memory in Silius Italicus Angeliki N. Roumpou
Index Locorum General Index
The wide range of texts discussed in this volume renders it appealing to students (undergraduates and postgraduates) and scholars working on Latin literature, with particular regard to the field of epic poetry and the relationship between epic poetry and Roman history.