Epitome


Epitome

An epitome (Greek "epitemnein"—to cut short) is a summary or miniature form, also used as a synonym for embodiment.

Many documents from the Ancient Greek and Roman worlds survive now only "in epitome," referring to the practice of some later authors (epitomators) who wrote distilled versions of larger works now lost. Some writers attempted to convey the stance and spirit of the original, while others added further details or anecdotes regarding the general subject. As with all secondary historical sources, a different bias not present in the original may creep in.

Documents surviving in epitome differ from those surviving only as fragments quoted in later works, and those used as unacknowledged sources by later scholars, as they can stand as discrete documents, albeit refracted through the views of another author.

The word is often mispronounced; its correct English pronunciation is "eh-PIH-toh-mee."

Examples

Examples of epitomes providing the only record of now lost works include:

* John Xiphilinus's precis of the missing portions of Cassius Dio's History of Rome
* Justin's abridged version of the "Philippic History" by Gnaeus Pompeius Trogus, one of the main sources for the life of Alexander the Great
* The epitome of Book IV of the Pseudo-Apollodorus's "Bibliotheca" ["Library"] , a comprehensive encyclopedia of Greek mythology

See also

* Epitome (image processing), an image processing technique which generates short descriptions of images
* Epitome de Caesaribus


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  • épitomé — [ epitɔme ] n. m. • épitome 1522; lat. epitome, gr. epitomê « abrégé » ♦ Didact. (titres) Abrégé d un ouvrage d histoire antique. Épitomé de l histoire de la Grèce. ● épitomé nom masculin (latin epitome, du grec epitomê, abrégé) Abrégé d un… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • épitome — ou, plus usité, épitomé (é pi to m ou é pi to mé) s. m. 1°   Abrégé d un livre. L épitome de Justin. •   Kepler dit, au quatrième livre de son épitome...., VOLT. Newton, III, 5. 2°   S écrit et se prononce toujours épitomé, quand on parle d un… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • épitomé — épitome ou, plus usité, épitomé (é pi to m ou é pi to mé) s. m. 1°   Abrégé d un livre. L épitome de Justin. •   Kepler dit, au quatrième livre de son épitome...., VOLT. Newton, III, 5. 2°   S écrit et se prononce toujours épitomé, quand on parle …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • Epitome — E*pit o*me, n.; pl. {Epitomes}. [L., fr. Gr. ? a surface incision, also, and abridgment, fr. ? to cut into, cut short; epi upon + te mnein to cut: cf. F. [ e]pitome. See {Tome}.] 1. A work in which the contents of a former work are reduced within …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Epítome — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Epítome (del griego ἐπιτομή epitome) es el resumen o sumario de una obra extensa, que describe lo más fundamental. La importancia de los epítomes para la historiografía actual radica en que en muchas ocasiones… …   Wikipedia Español

  • epitome — 1520s, an abstract; brief statement of the chief points of some writing, from M.Fr. épitomé (16c.), from L. epitome abridgment, from Gk. epitome abridgment, from epitemnein cut short, abridge, from epi into (see EPI (Cf. epi )) + temnein to cut… …   Etymology dictionary

  • epitome — /e pitome/ s.f. [dal lat. epitome, gr. epitomḗ taglio , der. di epitémno compendiare ]. (crit.) [versione abbreviata di un ampia opera, per lo più di contenuto storiografico] ▶◀ compendio, riassunto, sintesi, sunto. ◀▶ accrescimento, ampliamento …   Enciclopedia Italiana

  • epitome — pronounced as four syllables (i pit ǝ mi), is derived from a Greek word literally meaning ‘to cut into’. It has two main meanings in English, (1) a person or thing typically representing a quality or class • (Little did he dream when he designed… …   Modern English usage

  • epitome — [n1] perfect example apotheosis, archetype, embodiment, essence, exemplar, exemplification, illustration, last word*, personification, quintessence, representation, type, typification, ultimate; concept 686 epitome [n2] abbreviation abridgment,… …   New thesaurus

  • epítome — sustantivo masculino 1. Uso/registro: elevado. Resumen o compendio de una obra más extensa: He leído el epítome de gramática que has escrito y me parece muy útil …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • epitome — Epitome, Epitome huius epitomes …   Thresor de la langue françoyse


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