Thebaid (Latin Poem) - Ancient Reception and Canonicity

Ancient Reception and Canonicity

The Thebaid was popular in Statius's lifetime and (according to the epic’s final verse), Roman schoolboys were already memorizing passages from the epic before it was finished. Statius was personally favored by Emperor Domitian, and the educational use of his poem might be seen as a consequence of official favor; however, the poem remained a popular piece of Latin literature for many centuries, a testimony to its literary merit and lasting appeal. A commentary on the Thebaid is transmitted under the name of Lactantius Placidus, dating from 5-6th century CE, which has proven useful to modern scholars.

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