The Classical Quarterly

Research Article

Quintilian on Painting and Statuary

R. G. Austina1

a1 University College, Cardiff.

The clear affinity between Quintilian's art-criticism (xii. 10. 3–9) and the comparable portions of Pliny's Natural History has often been remarked. Pliny's principal sources for his chapters on art have long been recognized as going back through Varro to the great third-century critics, Xenocrates of Sicyon and Antigonus of Carystus, the latter of whom worked over Xenocrates' treatise and incorporated new material of his own; an earlier Greek source was Duris of Samos, on whom Antigonus drew for the anecdotic element in his tradition. The careful work of many patient scholars has been successful in disentangling to a considerable extent the characteristic contributions of these and other authorities to Pliny's medley of information. On the other hand, Quintilian's incursion into the same field seems never to have been studied independently, but only incidentally to research on the Plinian sources. The purpose of this paper is to examine Quintilian's contribution afresh; my indebtedness to earlier studies, in particular to those of Robert, will be readily apparent.