Recent decades have seen a growing interest in ancient Greek scholarship. Paraliterary texts were a fundamental mode of the engagement with Greek literature: texts in some way auxiliary to reading a literary work, such as commentaries, author biographies, and mythographical works.

Relatively few paraliterary texts have survived in independent form. Instead the practice of adding exegetical marginal notes to a text led to the medieval scholia which remained the most common form of commentary on literary texts in the Middle Ages.

For a long time paraliterary texts received only sporadic scholarly attention, and many questions remain surrounding their transmission and development.

This workshop acts as a forum for discussing the development of ancient paraliterary texts from antiquity and onwards. The questions addressed include but are not limited to:

  • What was an ancient school commentary? How did school commentaries and scholarly hypomnemata differ from each other? How does the ancient school commentary relate to medieval scholia?
  • How were paraliterary texts used and reused?
  • How did the practice of annotating texts develop? How do ancient and medieval marginal annotations (scholia vetera and recentiora) relate to each other?
  • Were different paraliterary texts transmitted differently?
  • Which sources were used in creating marginal annotations? Which material was deemed worthy of being annotated? What new material was created?
  • Who read annotated texts in antiquity and medieval times?

Scheduled participants:

Lucio del Corso (Università degli Studi di Cassino e del Lazio Meridionale)
Giuseppe Ucciardello (Università degli Studi di Messina)
Daniela Colomo (University of Oxford)
Chiara Meccariello (Georg-August-Universität Göttingen)
Enrico Prodi (University of Oxford, Balliol College)
Barbara Crostini (Uppsala University)
Mark de Kreij (University of Oxford, Oriel College & Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen)
Denis Searby (Stockholm University)
Pontus Österdahl (Stockholm University)

Unscheduled Participants with an interest in these questions are warmly welcome to attend. We would be grateful if any planning on attending get in touch with Pontus Österdahl to let him know.


Organiser: Department of Romance Studies and Classics
Contact: Pontus Österdahl
No registration required