Lucretian Receptions: History, the Sublime, Knowledge
Lucretius’ De Rerum Natura, one of the greatest Latin poems, worked a powerful fascination on Virgil and Horace, and continued to be an important model for later poets in antiquity and after, including Milton. This innovative set of studies on the reception of Lucretius is organized round three major themes: history and time, the sublime, and knowledge. The De Rerum Natura was foundational for Augustan poets’ dealings with history and time in the new age of the principate. It is also a major document in the history of the sublime; Virgil and Horace engage with the Lucretian sublime in ways that exercised a major influence on the sublime in later antique and Renaissance literature. The De Rerum Natura presents a confident account of the ultimate truths of the universe; later didactic and epic poets respond with varying degrees of certainty or uncertainty to the challenge of Lucretius’ Epicurean gospel.
• Innovative study of central ancient Latin poets and of Milton, which will form a central item of bibliography for scholars and students working on Latin poetry • All Latin and Greek in the main text is translated, making the book accessible to those without Latin or Greek expertise • Includes essays on the history of the sublime which is currently an important topic in literary studies, increasing the range of readership