CLA219H1 Lecture Notes - Fellatio, Second Sophistic, Agalmatophilia

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Published on 12 Oct 2012
School
UTSG
Department
Classics
Course
CLA219H1
Page:
of 2
Lecture 4 (10/02/12):
Women in Art and Poetry
- Peplos Kore (ca. 520 BC). Simply named because she is wearing the Peplos garment
and she is a girl
- Peplos: full length garment worn by Greek women, the typical women's garment by the
Classical period
- Kore: Greek for maiden
- Archaic statues are not very dynamic, very stiff, often the same expression and posture
- Archaic Smile: facial expression of most archaic statues, just a small smile so the
statue is not serious but is also not outright happy
- Not clear what these statues are for, could represent something like grace, a generic
representation of highborn girls, a minor god, or Athena herself
- Strong arguments in favour of viewing it as Athena
- The kouros was naked as apposed to the fully clothed girl
- Kouros: Greek for young man
- Polychromy: to have more than one colour
- The Greek and Roman statues were originally polychromatic with many different
colours, its up to personal preference whether that or monochrome is more attractive
- Genitals on the statues are smaller than you would expect, this is an aesthetic aspect
- Funerary Statue of Phrasiklea (ca. 540 BC), an actual representation of the dead girl,
very well preserved with both the image and the epigram (pedestal)
- Epigram: A brief and interesting poem, from the Greek word 'to inscribe'
- Elegy: A mournful song, usually a funerary lament
- Epitaph: A short text honouring a dead person
- The image could have been buried to protect it from a tyrant who had returned to
Athens
- The inscription is two lines and written is elegiac meter
- Inscription about always being a maiden reflected by the statue which will always be of
a maiden
- Phrasiklea the name means 'to which fame is a goal'
- Klea comes from Kleos, fame, this is something that has to be bestowed on you by a
poet
- She actually has fame, the tomb has made her famous, she will always be famous for
being a maiden
- The standard mode of reading in ancient Greece is to read aloud
- The flower she is holding is a lotus, it opens and closes, rekindles
- Might read it as the embodiment of the household, she doesn't get it in real life but she
gets to carry the symbol to the underworld
- Copy of Praxiteles Cnidian Aphrodite (4th cen.), famous for being the first nude female
figure
- Story is that it was modeled after the Hetaera Phryne with whom Praxiteles had an
affair with
- This is the most copied statue in antiquity (statues always copied and sold for the art
market)
- The statue was central in a round temple so it could be admired from all angles,
inspired many epigrams
- The story of Praxiteles and Phryne has captured the imaginations of many authors
- It is a representation of the shameful Aphrodite who is trying to cover herself up
- The Second Sophistic: A literary period in the 2nd and 3rd centuries AD which had
authors trying to copy the styling's of Classic Greek writers
- Lucian (of the second sophistic) has been attributed with the story of the boy and the
statue, the story is pseudo Lucian though
- Agalmatophilia: to fall in love with / be attracted to statues, word agalma is Greek is
specific to depictions of the gods
- Zeuxis is a painter (4 - 5 cen.), many stories surrounding him
- Got into a contest about who could paint the more realistic thing. Painted grapes so
realistic that birds tried to eat them but his opponent painted curtains so lifelike they
tricked Zeuxis
- His painting of Helen had many different models because no one was perfect enough
for him to paint
- Apparently he died laughing himself to death because he was painting an old woman
- To represent an old woman as bad they pictured her drunk
- Old women are open to mockery and women in general were thought of as always
drunk (unable to control themselves)
- Statue (on slide) must be Hellenistic because Classical and Archaic statues were
always idealized
- Nobody knows exactly where this image would have been used, most likely a private
commission for something
- Horace (1st cen.) is a 'court' poet, wrote Epose, a collection of iambic poetry, writes
about an old woman who wants to have sex with him but she's so ugly he can't get it up
- Fellatio: The act of oral sex, a motif in the ancient world as a last resort and a threat
- In this poem he is impotent and it is easier to blame the woman for being unattractive,
this is likely a lie
- Women would be considered old and past their prime in their thirties
- Vetula: a poem attacking old women
- Memento Mori: Latin 'and remember that one day you will die'
- Carpe Diem: Latin 'seize the day'
- The Grenfell Fragment is a poem written in the voice of a woman whose lover has left
her
- Not high literature but not bottom of the barrel stuff either
- This is supposed to the woman outside her lovers door, saying all this to the door
- Paraklausithyron: the motif of 'crying in front of the door', usually the man is doing this
to the woman he is chasing though
- The closed door is symbolic of the woman holding out
- The Dildo story fragment has echoes of the Demeter and Persephone myth
- Another male representation of what men think women talk about when they are alone
in private
- Mimiamb: Another word for mimes, associated with the 3rd century poet Herodas
- Mime: Semi improvised theatrical performances, considered low brow stuff
- Olisbos: The classical term for a dildo
- Skoptic: genital self mutilation

Document Summary

Simply named because she is wearing the peplos garment and she is a girl. Peplos: full length garment worn by greek women, the typical women"s garment by the. Archaic statues are not very dynamic, very stiff, often the same expression and posture. Archaic smile: facial expression of most archaic statues, just a small smile so the statue is not serious but is also not outright happy. Not clear what these statues are for, could represent something like grace, a generic representation of highborn girls, a minor god, or athena herself. Strong arguments in favour of viewing it as athena. The kouros was naked as apposed to the fully clothed girl. Polychromy: to have more than one colour. The greek and roman statues were originally polychromatic with many different colours, its up to personal preference whether that or monochrome is more attractive. Genitals on the statues are smaller than you would expect, this is an aesthetic aspect.