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Tine Scheijnen, Tine.Scheijnen@ugent.be “Quintus Smyrnaeus’ Posthomerica: an analysis in a diachronic and synchronic literary tradition” Institution: Universiteit Gent Promotor: prof. Dr. Kristoffel Demoen Starting date: 1/10/2012 Abstract: My investigation deals with a late antique Greek epic from the third century A.D., the ‘Posthomerica’ by Quintus Smyrnaeus. As its title suggests, this epic is “a sequel to Homer”, in both style and content. Despite the chronological distance between Homer and Quintus, the latter adapts to the language and style of his model in a remarkable way. The epic is an account of the events between the end of the Iliad and the beginning of the Odyssey. Though Quintus’ intention seems to be to continue these epics in a close imitation of Homer, a profound investigation of his adaptation of stylistic techniques (such as the Homeric simile) and the way he creates his characters and structures the plot, leads one to assume deeper motives. This needn’t surprise, since he belongs to the complex era of the Second Sophistic. Quintus finds himself in a contradictory literary tradition: why does he choose an old-fashioned style in an rhetoric era of literary criticism? To understand Quintus’ motives, we have to determine the position of the author in the literary tradition down to the Second Sophistic era. In three chapters we will investigate Quintus’ dealing with his Homeric model, with other (later) epic and Trojan sources and with the influence of the contemporary ideology. We will make an analysis of the narrative style, structure and content of the Posthomerica and compare these findings to his possible sources (including Homer, classical tragedies and odes, Roman hexameter poetry and Second Sophistic literature). Interesting case studies are the Homeric simile (Homer as a direct model for Quintus?), characterization of certain (non-) Homeric heroes, structural techniques and the religious and philosophical point of view of the epic (comparable to the Iliad or imbedded in contemporary debates?).