as a secondary aid to something else but for the information and diversion of the reader per se.7

Above all, Parthenius sets up the Sufferings in Love not (or not only, depending on whether the source-citations go back to him) as explicative of earlier texts, but as generative of new ones. He tells Cornelius Gallus in the preface that he hopes his protégé will be able to draw on them as subject-matter for his own epic or elegiac verse. We do not know whether he did. There is barely a trace of the Sufferings in Love in any extant Latin poetry. But that may be an accident of survival. Roman poets could draw on mythography for a multitude of purposes—for details, lists, names and family relationships; to guide them through a labyrinth of variants; and for certain kinds of raw material.8 If Ovid garnered metamorphosis myths from prose sources, then another poet could have culled erotic ones. Poets had drawn subject-matter from prose sources since Callimachus trawled local historians for various stories in the Aitia. Whether or not his pupil made use of his treatise, Parthenius was expecting his poetic protégé to behave in a rather Callimachean way.

  • H. Asquith, “From genealogy to Catalogue: the Hellenistic adaptation of the Hesiodic catalogue form”, in R. L. Hunter, The Hesiodic Catalogue of Women: Constructions and Reconstructions (Cambridge, 2005), 266–286.
  • G. Cambiano, L. Canfora, D. Lanza (edd.), Lo spazio letterario della Grecia antica, i. La produzione e la circulazione del testo, 2. L’ellenismo (Rome ,1993).
  • A. Cameron, Callimachus and his Critics (Princeton, 1995).
  • ———Greek Mythography in the Roman World (New York, 2004).
  • M. Fantuzzi and R. Hunter, Tradition and Innovation in Hellenistic Poetry (Cambridge, 2004).
  • K. J. Gutzwiller, A guide to Hellenistic literature (Oxford, 2007).
  • G. O. Hutchinson, Hellenistic Poetry (Oxford, 1988).
  • S. Isager and P. Pedersen, The Salmakis inscription and Hellenistic Halikarnassos (Odense, 2004).
  • R. Merkelbach and J. Stauber, Steinepigramme aus dem griechischen Osten, i. Die Westküste Kleinasiens von Knidos bis Ilion (Stuttgart, 1998).
  • R. Pfeiffer, History of Classical Scholarship: from the beginnings to the end of the Hellenistic age (Oxford, 1968).