This Narratological Commentary on Silius’ Battle of Ticinus lays bare the narrative form of the text by addressing numerous narratological aspects, including plot-development, focalization, space, and intertextuality. The book also focuses on the phenomenon of ambiguity with its dynamic processes of (un-)strategic production, perception, and resolution. Ambiguity is a central feature of the Punica because of the epic’s constant oscillation between fact and fiction: it treats the changing fortunes of war and the tension between Rome and Carthage, which Silius translates into a moment of poetical equilibrium by his paradoxical problematization of triumph in defeat and defeat through triumph.
Elisabeth Schedel, Dr. phil. (2020), Eberhard Karls Universität Tübingen, is lecturer of Latin literature. She has recently published a chapter on the potential and limitations of narratological close-readings of epic fragments (in Reitz/Finkmann, Structures of Epic Poetry I, Brill, 2019).
1 Premises, Objectives, Goals
2 Approaches and Methods
4 The Structure of Book 4
5 Conceptual Structure: How to Use This Commentary
1 Scene 1: 1–55 Ausonia before the Outbreak of the Battles
2 Summary of 56–479: The Battle of Ticinus
3 Scene 2: 56–142 The First Encounter of the Armies
4 Scene 3: 143–188 The Attack of the Boians
5 Scene 4: 189–247 The Roman Counterattack
6 Scene 5: 248–310 Single Combat between the Consul and Crixus
7 Scene 6: 311–354 The Attack of the Carthaginians
8 Scene 7: 355–400 The Combat between Two Sets of Triplets
9 Scene 8: 401–479 The Consul Scipio in Trouble and his Rescue
Glossary Bibliography Index
All interested in Silius’ historical epic Punica, especially in the battle of Ticinus (Sil. 4.1-479). And anyone concerned with theoretical, especially narratological approaches to ancient texts and questions of ambiguity.