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An in depth look at Catullus' poetry A schizoid use of elegi

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An in depth look at Catullus' poetry A schizoid use of elegi

Postby Frootata » Sun Sep 21, 2008 8:16 pm

I have an essay to write in my Latin AP class and I already have quite a lot of information on the subject, but I was wondering if anyone here could provide anymore information on it?

Basically, if you do not understand what I mean, Catullus uses Elegiac Poetry, poetry usually used for emotional, sometimes mournful, deep subjects, to grieve over the loss of his brother in 101 and then tell Rufius he will never get a woman because of his putrid armpits in 69. He can be emotional and comical with a style of poetry that is schizoid itself (this is one area where I'm lost, I believe she told us that it is split because of the hexameter and pentameter perhaps?)

Any insight or help on the subject would be greatly appreciated.
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Postby Kasper » Fri Sep 26, 2008 1:06 am

Is this not merely confusing the concept of elegy as opposed to eulogy, and the elegiac meter? For example, both Ovid and Martial almost exclusively used the elegiac meter, but their works can hardly be called mournful (well, some of Ovid's works can).
Non est hoc solummodo confusio de concepto elegiae, sicuti contra conceptum laudationis, et elegorum? Exempli gratia, ambo Ovidius Martialisque paene exclusive elegis sunt usi, attamen vix opera eorum luctuosa appellari possunt (bene, quaedam Ovidii possunt).

Besides, being somber at times and happy at other times does not seem very schizoid, as you say, to me. It seems like a normal human state.
Alterum, esse luctuosus interdum laetusque non videtur valde scissum, ut dicis, mihi. Habitus naturalis hominum mihi videtur.
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Re: An in depth look at Catullus' poetry A schizoid use of e

Postby benissimus » Sat Sep 27, 2008 2:32 am

Frootata wrote:I have an essay to write in my Latin AP class and I already have quite a lot of information on the subject, but I was wondering if anyone here could provide anymore information on it?

Basically, if you do not understand what I mean, Catullus uses Elegiac Poetry, poetry usually used for emotional, sometimes mournful, deep subjects, to grieve over the loss of his brother in 101 and then tell Rufius he will never get a woman because of his putrid armpits in 69. He can be emotional and comical with a style of poetry that is schizoid itself (this is one area where I'm lost, I believe she told us that it is split because of the hexameter and pentameter perhaps?)

Any insight or help on the subject would be greatly appreciated.

Elegiac couplets could be called schizoid because of the pairing of the two distinct meters, hexameter and pentameter. Elegiacs are best known, in Latin at least, for their light-hearted content, often love poetry and satire, but as you see they can also be used to express other, more serious topics. I would not say they are mostly used when discussing mournful topics. Not really sure what other information you need, but there is certainly much to be said about elegiacs.
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