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BirthplaceCyrene, Ancient Libya
poet, critic and scholar


(kəlĭm`əkəs), fl. 2d half of 5th cent. B.C., Greek sculptor from Athens. He was famous as the maker of the gold lamp in the Erechtheum and a seated image of Hera for a temple at Plataea. There are several Roman copies of his works; one is Pan and the Three Graces (Capitoline Mus., Rome). He reputedly originated the Corinthian capital and invented the running drill used for simulating the folds of drapery in marble.


fl. c.280–45 B.C., Hellenistic Greek poet and critic, b. Cyrene. Educated at Athens, he taught before obtaining work in the Alexandrian library. There he drew up a catalog, with such copious notes that it constituted a full literary history. He also wrote criticism and other works in prose, but is most notable as a poet. It is said that he wrote more than 800 different pieces. Of these, six hymns (meant for reading, with no religious use), a number of epigrams, and fragments of other poems survive. His greatest work was the Aetia, a collection of legends. Other longer poems of which fragments survive are The Lock of Berenice, Hecale, and Iambi. Callimachus' poetry is notable for brevity, polish, wit, learning, and inventiveness in form. He engaged in a famous literary quarrel with Apollonius of Rhodes over whether well-crafted short poems were superior to long poems. His works had a considerable influence on later Greek and Roman poets, especially Catullus.



Born 310 B.C., in Cyrene, North Africa; died 240 B.C., in Alexandria. Poet of the Alexandrian school.

Callimachus was the creator of the genre of the short poem. His narrative poem Hecale is an epyllion, a small-scale epic. His four books of narrative elegies are called Causes. He also wrote the poetry collection Iambs and the first catalogue of Greek writers, Tables. Sixty-four of his epigrams are extant. Callimachus greatly influenced subsequent Greek and Roman poetry.


In Russian translation:
Izbrannye gimny i epigrammy. Translated by V. Alekseev. St. Petersburg, 1899.
Grecheskaia epigramma. Edited by F. A. Petrovskii. Moscow, 1960.


Istoriia grecheskoi literatury, vol. 3. Edited by S. I. Sobolevskii [et al.]. Moscow, 1960.
Cahen, E. Callimaque et son Œuvre poétique. Paris, 1929.


1. late 5th century bc, Greek sculptor, reputed to have invented the Corinthian capital
2. ?305--?240 bc, Greek poet of the Alexandrian School; author of hymns and epigrams