The Classical Quarterly

Research Article

The Chronology of the Poems of Catullus

P. Maasa1

a1 Oxford

In June 1922 Rothstein, in his courageous and ingenious attack on Schwabe's generally accepted chronology of Catullus' poems, made these two surprising statements:

(1) The liaison with Lesbia began later than 57 B.C.

(2) All short poems are later than 57 B.C.

To maintain the first statement Rothstein denied (pp. 8ff.), against strong evidence, that poem 68 referred to Lesbia. To explain the second he assumed gratuitously (p. 31) that Catullus carelessly lost all his short poems written before 57 B.C., preserving only long ones, and among these the datable poems 68 and 65+66.