- Theodore Prodromus
Theodore Prodromus (Greek: Θεόδορος Πρόδρομος, d. c.
1166), also known as Ptochoprodromus (Πτοχοπρόδρομος = "Poor Prodromus"), was a Byzantine writer, well known for his proseand poetry, some of which is in the vernacular.
He wrote many occasional pieces for a widespread circle of
patrons at the Byzantine court. Some of the literary pieces attributed to him are unpublished, while still others may be wrongly attributed to him. Even so, there does emerge from these writings the figure of an author in reduced circumstances, with a marked inclination towards begging, who was in close touch with the court circles during the reigns of John II Komnenos(1118–1143) and Manuel I Komnenos(1143–1180). He was given a prebend by Manuel I, and he ended his life as a monk. Despite the panegyricand conventional treatment, his writings, often produced on some public occasion, provide important information on many aspects of contemporary Byzantine history. There is a strongly satiricalvein in his works, which range from epigrams and dialogues to letters and occasional pieces in both prose and verse. He had a biting sense of humour, and his comments are shrewd and pithy.
Works in literary language
The literary activity of Theodore Prodromus was vast and versatile, and there survive many of his writings in the literary Byzantine Greek language. Taking example by Heliodorus of Emesa's "
Aethiopica", he wrote a novel in verse, "Rodánthe and Dosiklís" (Τὰ κατὰ Ῥοδάνθην καὶ Δοσικλέα) in 9 books. The "Battle of Cats and Mice" (Κατομυομαχία) is a parodyof the Homeric epic in 384 verses. He also wrote two satirical poems, one against a lustful old woman (Κατὰ φιλοπόρνου γραός), and the other against an old bearded man (Κατὰ μακρογενείου γέροντος). There also survives an astrological poem on the power and meaning of planets. The "Verses on Twelve Months" (Στίχοι εἰς τοὺς δώδεκα μῆνας) are important for contemporary cultural history. Prodromus also wrote numerous occasional poems and epigrams, often on the occasion of some public event of historical significance, or for the purpose of begging for something; a few religious poems and treatises on the topics of theology, philosophyand grammar; dialogues written in the style of Lucian of Samosata; occasional speeches, epistles and many other writings.
One collection of poems, written in the Greek vernacular, has passed down to us under the name of " Ptochoprodromus", however it has still not been established with certainty whether these poems were written by him or by someone who was imitating, or possibly even parodying, the true Theodore Prodromus. An attempt was made at resolving the problem of authorship by putting forward a
hypothesisthat there had actually been two poets of the same name. The evidence was found in one verse among the Ptochoprodromic writings opus, where the author praises the "famous writer, harmonious swallow", who was his "friend and predecessor". However, in distinguishing which poems belong to whom of the two poets, one comes across the unsurpassable obstacles. It was also suggested, without much evidence, that one Prodromus died in 1152, and the other in 1166.
The basic part of the Ptochoprodromic writings consists of five
laments and begging poems, which are marked as ABCDE. The poem A laments over the poet's garrulous wife and calls for help from emperor John II Komnenos. The poem B is addressed to a sebastokrator and begs for charity to improve the menu. The poem C, addressed to emperor Manuel I Komnenos, relates a young monk's complaint over scandalous living circumstances in his monastery. The poem D is only a parallel of the poem C. The poem E describes a Byzantine writer.
manuscriptssignify that the author of these poems is a Prodromus, Theodore Prodromus etc. with further variations. One manuscript of the monastic satire (C) signifies that the author is Ilarion Ptochoprodromus, and this name is found again in the poem D. This name has always been identified with the famous novelist, poet and writer Theodore Prodromus, who wrote in purist Byzantine Greek. The bilingualismis not all that surprising, as it is already found in the writings of Michael Glycas. However, many scholars think that neither the monastic satire (C) nor the satire on the writer (E) can be reconciled with the life of Theodore Prodromus. Others suggest that Ilarion was Theodore's son, ascribing the wrong authorship references in the manuscripts to the later copyists. However, no evidence has been found to support this hypothesis.
* [http://www.documentacatholicaomnia.eu/30_20_1100-1158-_Theodorus_Prodromus.html Greek Opera Omnia by Migne Patrologia Graeca with analytical indexes]
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Théodore Caruel — Ne pas confondre avec Théodore Caruelle d Aligny (1798 1871), peintre paysagiste français Théodore Caruel (né à Chandernagor en 1830 et mort à Florence en 1898), est un botaniste italien. Biographie Né dans les Indes françaises, d un père… … Wikipédia en Français
Prodromus, Theodore — ▪ Byzantine author also called Ptochoprodromus (Greek: “Poor Prodromus”) died c. 1166 Byzantine writer, well known for his prose and poetry, some of which is in the vernacular. He wrote many occasional pieces for a widespread… … Universalium
List of Greek artists — This is a list of Greek artists from the antiquity to today.Artists have been categorised according to their main artistic profession and according to the major historical period they lived in:The Ancient (until the foundation of the Byzantine… … Wikipedia
Greek literature — Introduction body of writings in the Greek language, with a continuous history extending from the 1st millennium BC to the present day. From the beginning its writers were Greeks living not only in Greece proper but also in Asia Minor, the… … Universalium
Synaxarium — Synaxarium, Synaxarion, Synexarium, Synexarion, pl. Synaxaria (Greek: Συναξάριον, from συναγειν , synagein , to bring together; cf. etymology of synaxis and synagogue ) , the name given in the Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox and Eastern… … Wikipedia
Synaxarion — • The name of a liturgical book of the Byzantine Church. The exact meaning of the name has changed at various times Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Synaxarion Synaxarion … Catholic encyclopedia
Names of the Serbs and Serbia — For other uses, see Serbian names. Part of a series of articles on Serbs … Wikipedia
Patrologia Graeca — La Patrologia Graeca est l édition de référence des textes grecs des Pères de l Église. La Patrologie Graeca est une collection majeure de textes antiques et médiévaux contenant les écrits des Pères de l’Église et d’autres auteurs ecclésiastiques … Wikipédia en Français
Patrologie grecque — Patrologia Graeca La Patrologia Graeca est l édition de référence des textes grecs des Pères de l Église. La Patrologie Graeca est une collection majeure de textes médiévaux contenant les écrits des Pères de l’Église et d’auteurs ecclésiastiques… … Wikipédia en Français
Patrologia Graeca — The Patrologia Graeca (or Patrologiae Cursus Completus, Series Graeca) is an edited collection of writings by the Christian Church Fathers and various secular writers, in the ancient Koine or medieval variants of the Greek language. It consists… … Wikipedia