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Pindar in Sicily - 13-14-15-16-17-18-19/10/2019, Syracuse (Italy)

Even a cursory look at the remaining corpus of Pindar’s victory odes leaves one in no doubt about the wealth, power, and prestige of his Sicilian patrons. Exactly a third of the odes were composed for Sicilian athletic victories, all but three in the more illustrious of the four Panhellenic contests (Olympian and Pythian), and almost all of them for single horse or chariot races, which required significantly more expenditure than any of the other athletic competitions. The odes to the ruling families of Deinomeniadai and Emmenidai (Hieron of Syracuse and Theron and Xenokrates of Akragas) are the most numerous and have long been considered among the most beautiful, sophisticated, and memorable ancient Greek poetry. It is thus not surprising that recent scholarship has focused on Pindar’s special relationship with Sicily in the context of Sicilian social, political, and cultural climate in the fifth century BCE (Morgan (2015), Nicholson (2015), Lewis (forthcoming). On the other hand, surprisingly few scholars of Pindar and the historical context in which he worked have ever been to Sicily to see the hometowns of Pindar’s patrons, where the songs would most likely have premiered in elaborate public performances, and which figure prominently in all of his compositions. The goal of this conference is to bring scholars from a variety of disciplines to Siracusa to discuss these odes and to visit the archaeological remains of the places and people they celebrate.


FECHA/DATE/DATA: 13-14-15-16-17-18-19/10/2019

LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: Exedra Mediterranean Centre (Syracuse, Italy)


INFO: web -



Programa provisional/ provisional program/ programma provvisorio:

Sunday, October 13

Opening Session


Heather L. Reid, "Morningside College & Fonte Aretusa"

Susi Kimbell, "Exedra Mediterranean Center"

Recitation of a Pindaric Ode by Students of the Liceo Classico Tommaso Gargallo, Siracusa

Keynote Lecture

Virginia Lewis, Florida State University, USA

"Myth and Place in Pindar’s Odes for Sicily"

Walking Tour of Pindaric Sites in Ortigia & Welcome Dinner

Monday, October 14,

AM: Guided tour of Neapolis Archaeological Park

Afternoon Program

George Gazis, Durham University, UK (Mon)

"Which path will you follow? Homer’s universe and Pindar’s afterlife"

Bonnie MacLachlan, University of Western Ontario, Canada

"Pindar and Sicilian Nymphs"

Simone Corvasce, University of Pisa, Italy

"The Ancient Theory of Paradigms and two Sicilian Odes of Pindar"

Antonello Mastronardi, University of Michigan, USA

"La scrofa, la scimmia e radamanti: La παροιμία come mezzo espressivo di Pindaro per la polemica contro la corte di Siracusa"

Sabrina Colabella

"L’Etna e il mito di Tifeo come paradigma poetico"

Margherita Spadafora

"Carmi che varcano il mar Ionio: su alcune figure di trasmissione della poesia nelle odi siciliane"

19.30 Reception – Aperitivo

Tuesday, October 15

Francesco Buè (Mon or Tue)

"Tracking Pindar’s Presence in Sicily"

Dennis Alley

"Pindar’s Tightrope: Competitive Tyranny and the Epinician Habit"

Hanne Eisenfeld, Boston College, USA

"Hieron of Syracuse and the Greek Songworld"

Maria Xanthou, Harvard CHS/University of Bristol, UK

"In sickness and in health: Pindar’s relation with his patron Hieron I"

Gianna Stergiou

"Pindar and Hieron in Pythian 2 and Olympian 1: tyrant’s hegemony vs poet’s autonomy"

Buffet Lunch

Edmund Stewart, University of Nottingham, UK

"Pindar and Aeschylus in Sicily: Wandering Poets and their Patrons"

Nolan Epstein, Stanford University, USA

"Pindar’s Sicilian Subterfuge(s): mapping Sicily onto Greece"

Elliott Domagola, University of Pittsburgh, USA

"The Pindaric Paradox: Sicilian “Greekness” in the Epinician Odes"

Cecilia Nobili, Università degli Studi di Milano, Italy

"Between stone and song: Sicilian tyrants’ victories in agonistic epigrams and epinician odes."

Patrick O’Sullivan, University of Canterbury, New Zealand

"Ambivalence and Power: Music in Pindar’s Pythian I"

Kyle Khellaf

"Pindar and the Lines of Sicilian Flight"

Reception – Aperitivo

Wednesday, October 16

AM Guided tour of Paolo Orsi Archaeological Museum

Afternoon Program

Nancy Felson, University of Georgia, USA

"Connections: Thebes, Acragas, and Syracuse in several of Pindar’s Sicilian Odes"

Chiara Ciampa, King's College London, UK

"Sicily between Literature and Philosophy: Pindar and Xenophanes at the court of Hiero of Syracuse"

Hyun Höchsmann

‘Turn the brightness outward’: Muthos and Paideia in Pindar and Plato"

Tiziano Presutti, Università degli Studi di Chieti-Pescara, Italy

"Neither Hieron nor Theron: The myth of Heracles and the victory of Chromius in Pindar’s first Nemean"

Maša Ćulumović, Center for Hellenic Studies

"Pindar’s Heracles"

Closing Banquet

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