The Ancient Library

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Grammatica [sometimes rendered in Latin by litteratura].

1. Greece. The term grammatica, in the scientific sense, included, in antiquity, all the philological disciplines, grammar proper, lexicography, prosody, the lower and higher criticism, antiquities, everything, in short, necessary to the understanding and explanation of grammata, or the treasures of literature, whether their form or their matter be in question. It was first de­veloped into a special science during the Alexandrian age, in Alexandria and Per-gamon, where the great libraries gave ample opportunity for philological studies on the scale above indicated. It was the restoration of the text of the Homeric poems, and the explanation of their words and contents, that primarily exercised the wits of the scholars. Hesiod, the lyric poets, the dramatists, and certain prose writers next engaged their attention. The progress and development of philology is marked by the names of ZenodStus (about 280 b.c.), Aristophanes of Byzantium (260-183), and Aristarchus (about 170), the three chief representatives of the Alex­andrian school. To these must be added Crates (about 160), the head of the school of Pergamon, and the opponent of the Alexandrians. The name of Aristarchus represents the highest point of philological learning and criticism in antiquity. He was the founder of the celebrated school of the Aristarcheans, which continued to exist and to maintain an uninterrupted tradition, down to the first century of the imperial age. His disciple Dionyslus Thrax wrote the oldest manual of grammar that we pos­sess. By far the most celebrated of the later Aristarcheans was Dldymus, born about 63 b.c. His writings are the chief founda­tion of the Byzantine collections of scholia.

The science of grammatica gradually narrowed its scope till it confined itself to grammar in the restricted sense of the word, namely, accidence and syntax, com­bined with lexical researches into the dialects, and into the usages of special periods of literature, and special groups of authors. The most eminent scholars of the Empire are Apollonlus DyscSlus (about 150 a.d.), who endeavoured to reduce the whole of empirical grammar to a system, and his son, ^Elius Herodianus, a still more , important personage. The writings of the latter form one of the chief authorities of

the later grammarians, such as Arcadius. The lexical writings of the earlier scholars were often very comprehensive, and have only survived in fragments, or in later extracts, such as that of Hesychius. They had consisted mainly in collections of glosses, or strange and antiquated expres­sions. But in the 2nd century a.d. the influence of the reviving sophistic litera­ture and education turned the attention of lexicographers to the usage of the Attic writers. This tendency is represented in the surviving works of Pollux, HarpScration, and others. To the same period belongs Hephsestion's manual of prosody, which is the only complete treatise on this subject. Athenseus, at the beginning of the 3rd century, wrote a work (the DeipnGsophistce) of inestimable value to the student of anti­quities. Longlnus, who died 273 a.d., may be regarded as the last considerable scholar of the ancient world. The later gram­marians restricted themselves to compiling extracts from the works of earlier ages.

(2) Rome. After the middle of the 2nd century b.c., a lively interest in the history of literature and the study of language arose in Rome. It had been excited by the lectures on Greek authors given by Crates during his sojourn in Rome as ambassador (b.c. 159). Not only writers of repute, such as Accius and Lucilius, but men like ^lius Stllo, a member of the equestrian order, who was actively engaged in public life, took up these studies with eagerness. What was afterwards known of the primitive Latin language we owe mainly to jElius Stilo. He was the master of the great encyclopaedist Marcus Terentius Varro, Cicero's contem­porary. This great scholar left his mark on every department of philological research, and his writings were the storehouse from which the following generations mainly drew their information. Besides Varro, other men of mark occupied themselves with gram­matical study in the Ciceronian age, notably Nigldlus Figulus. Julius Oesar was the author of a treatise on accidence. There were numerous scholars in the Augustan age, among whom Verrlus Flaccus and Hyginus deserve especial notice. In the 1st century a.d. we have Remmlus Patemon, Asconius Pedianus, Valerius Probus, and the elder Pliny. It was Remmius Palasmon who is mainly responsible for having made Vergil the centre of scholastic instructioa for the Latin world, as Homer was for the Greek. During the 2nd century, under Hadrian and the Antonines, we notice a

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