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Imperialism, Cultural Politics, and Polybius$
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Christopher Smith and Liv Mariah Yarrow

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199600755

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199600755.001.0001

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The Language of Polybius since Foucault and Dubuisson

The Language of Polybius since Foucault and Dubuisson

(p.85) 5 The Language of Polybius since Foucault and Dubuisson
Imperialism, Cultural Politics, and Polybius

David Langslow

Oxford University Press

This chapter undertakes a provisional reassessment, first, of Polybius' Greek against nine syntactic/stylistic features, comparing his usage with that of both classical and later Hellenistic historians; and, secondly, of the influence of Latin on his Greek syntax and vocabulary. It suggests on the strength of examples and case studies a series of working hypotheses for further investigation, including the following: that Polybius' use of (near)synonyms is less haphazard than is often supposed; that his similes and metaphors contain further evidence of his natural fondness for everyday language; and that, notwithstanding the last, he may occasionally use syntax or vocabulary to allude to a famous predecessor historian.

Keywords:   Polybius, Greek language, classical, Koine, Greek syntax, Greek vocabulary, Latin, language-contact, everyday language, simile

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