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(Quintus Horatius Flaccus) (hôr`əs), 65 B.C.–8 B.C., Latin poet, one of the greatest of lyric poets, b. Venusia, S Italy. He studied at Rome and Athens and, joining Brutus and the republicans, fought (42 B.C.) at Philippi. Returning to Rome, he was introduced by Vergil to MaecenasMaecenas
(Caius Maecenas) , d. 8 B.C., Roman statesman and patron of letters. He was born (between 74 B.C. and 64 B.C.) into a wealthy family and was a trusted adviser of Octavian (Augustus), who employed Maecenas as his personal representative for various political missions.
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, who became (c.38 B.C.) his friend and constant benefactor. Maecenas gave him a farm in the Sabine Hills, where he lived thereafter except for lengthy visits to Rome. His first book of Satires appeared in 35 B.C., the Epodes c.30 B.C., the second book of Satires in 29 B.C., three books of Odes c.24 B.C., and the first book of Epistles c.20 B.C. The fourth book of Odes, the second book of Epistles, a hymn (the Carmen Saeculare), and the Ars Poetica, or Epistle to the Pisos, appeared c.13 B.C. Horace was an unrivaled lyric poet. His early poems show the influence of the Greek Archilochus, but his later verse displays complete and individualized adaption of Greek meters to Latin. As his genius matured, Horace's themes turned from personal vilification to more generalized satire and to literary criticism. He gives a vivid picture of contemporary Roman society and represents especially the spirit of the Augustan age of Rome—a time of peace, when the arts were cultivated earnestly without pretense. He had much influence on European poetry.


See Loeb translations by H. R. Fairclough (rev. ed. 1929) and C. E. Bennett (rev. ed. 1964); poetic translations by J. Michie (1965) and N. Rudd (1979, repr. 1981); biography by P. Levi (1998); studies by E. Fraenkel (1957), S. Commager (1962), L. P. Wilkinson (1951, repr. 1965), D. A. West (1967), and C. D. N. Costa, ed. (1973).



(full name, Quintus Horatius Flaccus). Born 65 B.C., in Venusia; died 8 B.C., in Rome. Roman poet and the son of a freedman.

After Caesar’s assassination in 44 B.C., Horace sided with the republicans. At the Battle of Philippi (42 B.C.), which ended in failure for the Republic, Horace fled from the battlefield. After amnesty was proclaimed he purchased a position as a quaestor scribe. In 38 B.C. he joined the circle of Maecenas.

The first works by Horace were two books of satires, or “talks,” on moral and literary themes modeled on Greek diatribes (around 35–30 B.C.). In the same period he also wrote books of epodes, poems primarily accusatory in character. Later he became increasingly reconciled to the empire. Between 30 and 13 B.C. he wrote four books of lyric verse (odes). The first book contains philosophical meditations in the Epicurean vein, and to some extent the Stoic. The second is devoted to problems of poetry. The letter to the Pisos, which then, as now, was entitled the Ars poetica, occupies a special place. The creative art of Horace, a remarkable master poet and the author of brilliant and harmonious intellectual poetry, is a pinnacle of Roman literature; he enriched that literature with the meters of Greek lyric poetry, which were new to it.

In the age of classicism, Horace was the exemplar of poet and theorist. His Ars poetica served as the foundation of N. Boileau’s Art of Poetry (1674). In Russia, Horace’s ode “Memorial” was translated by M. V. Lomonosov and reworked by G. R. Derzhavin, A. S. Pushkin, and V. Ia. Briusov. Pushkin’s poem “Who of the Gods Has Restored to Me” is a free translation of the seventh ode of Horace’s second book of odes.


Opera. Edited by F. Klingner. Lipsos, 1959.
In Russian translation:
Ody, epody, satiry, poslaniia. Moscow, 1970.
Poln. sobr. soch. Edited and with annotations by F. A. Petrovskii. Moscow-Leningrad, 1936.


Blagoveshchenskii, N. M. Goratsii i ego vremia. St. Petersburg, 1864; 2nd ed. Warsaw, 1878.
Istoriia rimskoi literatury, vol. 1. Moscow, 1959.
Smiley, C. N. Horace: His Poetry and Philosophy. New York, 1945.
Fraenkel, E. Horace. Oxford, 1957.
Stegen, G. Les Épitres littéraires d’Horace. Namur, 1958.
Perret, J. Horace. Paris, 1960.
Commager, S. The Odes of Horace. New Haven-London, 1962.



Latin name Quintus Horatius Flaccus. 65--8 bc, Roman poet and satirist: his verse includes the lyrics in the Epodes and the Odes, the Epistles and Satires, and the Ars Poetica
References in periodicals archive ?
Examining the relationship between the Horatian mottos and the essays, Robert C.
The Alchemical Republic: A Reading of 'An Horatian Ode upon Cromwell's Return from Ireland'.
His instances of horismus are playful--"Professional soldiers are people who die for a living" (Napalm 248)--but not always satirical, as this Horatian quip is: "Disco--A large group of people sweating in nice clothes" (Brain Damage np).
The qualities of the historian who will bring out the full significance of the vast changes--economical, social, and cultural--marked by the Civil War, should, one feels, include a sense of complexities such as informs that triumphantly civilized poem, An Horatian Ode.
Sure, Colbert took Bush down a peg, and Stewart took down CNBC "Mad Money" host Jim Cramer, and publicly shamed Senate Republicans into supporting medical care for 9/11 first responders, but more often than not they employed Horatian rather than Juvenalian satire.
In his "Modest Proposal" Swift had employed the aggressive ridicule of Juvenalian satire, more savage and bitter than the gentle, chiding, corrective Horatian satire.
The fact that she embarks upon her trip to her sister as a 'pure pilgryme' suggests that she expects to find some form of Horatian rural retreat, where the living is simple through choice rather than compulsion, and from which she can return to town life suitably refreshed.
After abiding by familiar Petrarchan topics situated firmly within the "Courtly Love" tradition in the poetic exercises of his youth (Sonnets I-VI), Milton adapted so apparently slight and constrained a poetic form to the service of diverse majestic modes: the panegyric (X, XV, XVI), the jeremiad (XVIII), the epigram (VIII), the polemic (XI, XII), the lamentation (XXIII), the allegorical drama (IX, XIV), and the Horatian familiar ode of hospitality (XX, XXI).
It is even in line with the Horatian precepts in its combination of instructive and entertaining information.
And the summons of Roland, Olivier, And every sheepish paladin and peer, Being already more than proved in fight, Sits down in school to try if he can write Like Horace in the true Horatian vein, Yet like a Christian disciplined to bend His mind to thinking on the end.
Among his topics are English Renaissance poets and the translating tradition, Dryden's Horatian ode, classical translation and the formation of the English literary canon, Wordsworth's suppressed eighth satire, and Ted Hughes' Homer.
Marshall Gregory begins his Shaped by Stories: The Ethical Power of Narratives by recalling a Horatian observation: "Long ago, with elegant succinctness, Horace defined the educational transposition by which readers identify with narratives: 'Change the name,' he says, 'and you are the subject of the story' (Satires, 1.