Ancient and Medieval Greek Etymology: Theory and Practice I (Trends in Classics - Supplementary Volumes, Book 111)

February 20, 2021
Ancient and Medieval Greek Etymology: Theory and Practice I (Trends in Classics - Supplementary Volumes, Book 111)

This volume on Greek synchronic etymology offers a set of papersevidencing the cultural significance of etymological commitment inancient and medieval literature. The four sections illustrate thevariety of approaches of the same object, which for Greek writerswas much more than a technical way of studying language.Contributions focus on the functions of etymology as they wereintended by the authors according to their own aims. (1)“Philosophical issues” addresses the theory of etymology and itsexplanatory power, especially in Plato and in Neoplatonism. (2)“Linguistic issues” discusses various etymologizing techniques andthe status of etymology, which was criticized and openly rejectedby some authors. (3) “Poetical practices of etymology” investigatesthe ubiquitous presence of etymological reflections in learnedpoetry, whatever the genre, didactic, aetiological or epic. (4)“Etymology and word-plays” addresses the vexed question of thelimit between a mere pun and a real etymological explanation, whichis more than once difficult to establish. The wide range of genresand authors and the interplay between theoretical reflection andapplied practice shows clearly the importance of etymology in Greekthought.