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Lyric Poems in Ancient Times

Lyric poetry was a dedicated following in the Hellenistic world. It was not that common in the Latin world, although its popularity in Japan, China, and Persia was great.

Lots of poems of the ancient world were written for dramatic use, addressing the listener directly. Most poems in that time were sung or recited and portrayed the poet’s state of mind.

“Lyrikos” is the Greek term that first appears in the seventh century B.C.E. It comes from "lyre", which accompanied the recitations. According to some scholars, the seventh-century lyric poetry is predated by the earliest surviving lyric poems.

Alcman’s "Maiden Song" belongs to one of the earliest lyric poems written by a particular poet. It is about a festival to the gods. There is little remarkable about this poem except that it has been preserved for such a long time.

We know about such Greek lyric poets as Anacreon, Alcaeus, Bacchylides, Archilochus, Lasus, Ibycus, Pindar, Sappho, Mimnermus, Theognis, Stesichorus, Simonides, and Xenophanes. Some of these poets still remain obscure, but some do not, for instance, Sappho. She was born in the seventh century B.C.E. on the island of Lesbos. Her poems were collected and arranged in 9 books. There is not much known about her life, but most things are possible to find out from her poems.

Greeks in the period after Aristotle wrote about lyric poets, for instance, Dichearchus wrote about Alcaeus, and Clearchus of Soli in his On Love Poetry wrote about Anacreon and Sappho.

Scholars edited lyric poems, encapsulating nine lyric poets with the literary tradition, including Alcman, Alcaeus, Ibycus, Bacchylides, Anacreon, Sappho, Pindar, Simonides, and Stesichorus, so all of the poets who lived from 650 to 450 b.c.e.

Lyric poetry was also popular in India in ancient times, but the poems mostly remain anonymous.

Lyric poetry was extremely popular in Han dynasty China as well as during the period of the Warring States and Three Kingdoms. Best known poets are Cao Cao, Cao Pi, and Cao Zhi.

As for Japanese lyric poets, the following were the most recognized: Ariwara no Narihara, Ono no Komachi, and Saigyo. The Persian culture includes such poets as Anvari, Asadi Tusi, Attar, Ferdowsi, Omar Khayyam, Nezami, and Rudaki.

Although translations of Latin and Greek poetry and literature have been available in the West for several centuries, access to Japanese and Chinese materials has been limited for a long time.

Today, many poems written in ancient times are translated into many languages.

Lyric poetry was a dedicated following in the Hellenistic world. It was not that common in the Latin world, although its popularity in Japan, China, and Persia was great.

Lots of poems of the ancient world were written for dramatic use, addressing the listener directly. Most poems in that time were sung or recited and portrayed the poet’s state of mind.

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100001893
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CREATED ON
September 23, 2016
COMPLETED ON
September 24, 2016
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$41
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