The Classical Quarterly (New Series)

Research Article

Cinna, Calvus, and the Ciris

Richard F. Thomasa1

a1 Harvard University

Among other things, R. O. A. M. Lyne's recent edition and commentary of the Ciris (Cambridge, 1978) has established the general method of composition followed by this pseudo-neoteric poet: he demonstrably lifted wholesale and applied to his own poem words, phrases, lines, and even entire sequences from the works of the neoterics and the poets of the following generation. Accordingly, one of the poem's chief attributes is that it serves as a means for recovering the general content, and at times the actual wording, of earlier, more important poetry. This paper offers some additional areas in the Ciris where such influence may exist. I confine myself to Cinna and Calvus, whose poetry may justly be considered the missing two-thirds of the neoteric movement.