Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Storytelling in late antique epic : a study of the narrator in Nonnus of Panopolis' Dionysiaca
Author: Geisz, Camille H.
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2013
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Full text unavailable from EThOS. Restricted access.
Access from Institution:
This thesis is a narratological study of Nonnus of Panopolis' Dionysiaca, focussing on the figure of the narrator whose interventions reveal much about his relationship to his predecessors and his own conception of story-telling. Although he presents himself as a follower of Homer, whom he mentions by name in his poem, the Dionysiaca are clearly influenced by a much wider range of sources of inspiration. The study of narratological interventions brings to light the narrator's relationship with Homer, between imitation and innovation. The way he renews and transforms epic narratorial devices attests to his literary skills as he strives for ποικιλία in his poem. His interventions hint at sources of inspiration other than Homer, such as lyric poetry, historiography, and didactic epic. Another innovation is the way the narrator intervenes not to draw the narratee's attention to the contents of his text, but to underline his own role as story-teller. Some interventions signal a change in tone or the integration of another genre; the expected proems and invocations to the Muse become spaces for a display of ingeniousness, a discussion of the sources and a reflection on the role of the poet. The efforts made by the Nonnian narrator to renew well known devices also denotes his mindfulness of his narratee, whom he involves in the story through metaleptic devices, or by drawing on a shared cultural background to enhance the narrative with allusions to extradiegetic references. The study of narratorial interventions proves that the Dionysiaca were not written only in an attempt to recreate a Homeric epic, but are a compendium of influences, genres, and myths, encompassing the influence of a thousand years of Greek literature.
Supervisor: Lightfoot, Jane L. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Hellenic (Classical Greek) literature ; Late antiquity and the Middle Ages ; Languages (Medieval and Modern) and non-English literature ; Classical Greek ; Hellenic languages ; Nonnus ; Nonnus of Panopolis ; narratology ; ancient greek literature ; epic poetry ; literary devices ; Dionysiaca ; storytelling ; reception of Homeric literature