30) The effect of seeing her and being in her presence, therefore, is tantamount to that of experiencing an epiphany of Aphrodite herself, and this scene foreshadows the equivalence and antagonism between Callirhoe
and the goddess that is particularly prevalent in the first half of the novel.
Some Political and Ideological Dimensions of Chariton's Chaireas and Callirhoe
The relative chronology between Callirhoe
and the Ephesiaca is currently debated due to a lack of evidence.
's relationship with Dionysius and her final "intrigue" (the author's word), when she writes him the letter unbeknownst to Chaereas, creates instability in the post-narrative time because Callirhoe
will not be able to forget her past.
Conversely, his interplay with classical historians and other models shows the clear limit of defining Callirhoe
as a pre-sophistic novel.
My aim here is to identify the various ways in which Chariton engages with the Anabasis and give an initial sustained reading of Callirhoe
against the backdrop of the earlier work.
He emphasizes especially the free adaptation of history in both Callirhoe
and Parthenope, as well as shared motifs and stylistic features (he could have added to the list a possible similar use of the recognition-motif: apparently Parthenope's shining beauty did not remain undetected even when she tried to be inconspicuous by shaving her hair, (2) just as Callirhoe
's splendor breaks through the most slavish outfits [2.
While all these predicaments involve intense emotions, only Callirhoe
and Dionysius are troubled by moral concerns.
In this respect, one might wonder whether Helen's, Penelope's and Callirhoe
's sense of time is identical simply because Helen, Penelope, and Callirhoe
share similar narrative patterns of return and reunion.
Chariton, for example, exploits this convention in his opening chapters, where he subjects both Chaereas and Callirhoe
to the flames of love at first sight ([TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII.
Moretti observes that, similarly, in Chariton old Plangon acts as intermediary between Callirhoe
and her future husband, Dionysius.
A short while later, when the suitors conspire to arouse Chaereas' jealousy by planting evidence of a komos at the door of the now married couple, Callirhoe
responds to Chaereas' accusations by declaring: "No one has caroused at my father's house; perhaps your door is used to carousals, and your marriage is distressing to your lovers [erastai]" (1.