Anacreontic Poetry

Anacreontic Poetry

 

light and cheerful lyric poetry, widespread in European literature of the Renaissance and Enlightenment. The late Greek collection of poems The Anacreontics, written in imitation of Anacreon and mistakenly attributed to him, served as a model for Anacreontic poetry. Its basic themes were earthly joy, wine, love, and occasionally political freethinking. In Russia, Anacreontic verse was written by M. V. Lomonosov, G. R. Derzhavin, K. N. Batiushkov, A. S. Pushkin, and others and in France by the poets of the Pléiade and by A. Chénier, Voltaire, E. D. Parny, and P. J. Béranger.

EDITIONSCarmina anacreontea. Edited by C. Preisendanz. Leipzig, 1912.

REFERENCE

Istoriia grecheskoi literatury, vol. 1. Edited by S. I. Sobolevskii et al. Moscow-Leningrad, 1946.
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As Marshall Brown observes, "the history of Anacreontic poetry is a rich and varied chapter in the biography of European civilization" but one that, "in Pierre Bourdieu's phrase," has been "'written out of literary history.
EBB's translations and letters thus indicate that she was well versed in the forms, conventions, and connotations of Anacreontic poetry, as she signals throughout "Wine of Cyprus," quite apart from her opening invocation of Bacchus.
This practice encouraged readers to associate the two poets and therefore to interpret Sappho's love poetry as similar in style to the playful erotic conventions of Anacreontic poetry.