Classics Eratosthenes of Cyrene
by
P. J. Finglass
  • LAST MODIFIED: 27 February 2019
  • DOI: 10.1093/obo/9780195389661-0330

Introduction

Eratosthenes was one of the great scholars of Antiquity. Born in Cyrene in c. 285, he studied in Athens before becoming the third librarian at the great research institute founded by King Ptolemy I at Alexandria in Egypt. Rather than specializing in any one field, he produced scholarship in philology, geography, mathematics, philosophy, and chronography, as well as composed poetry. This breadth of learning was (remarkably) the subject of criticism: he was called “Beta” and the “Pentathlete,” which referred to being the second-best in every field. But his versatility did not preclude considerable achievement: most notably, he calculated the circumference of the earth and made other great intellectual advances in geography (where his influence on the later geographer Strabo was considerable) and literary criticism (where, for instance, he refused to believe that the places of Homer’s Odyssey could be mapped onto the actual Mediterranean world), as well as receiving praise for his poetry (from pseudo-Longinus). His works have not survived in full; the process of gathering and assessing his fragments is still ongoing.

Editions, Commentaries, Translations

There are no complete editions of the fragments of Eratosthenes. The most recent attempt at such a collection, Bernhardy 1822, is nearly two centuries old and now of little more than antiquarian use. Rosokoki 1995 provides a modern edition of the fragments of one of his poems, Erigone, but for other poetic fragments we must still refer to Powell 1925, supplemented by Lloyd-Jones and Parsons 1983 and Lloyd-Jones 2005. Geographical fragments are found in Berger 1880, philological fragments in Strecker 1884 and Bagordo 1998, chronographical ones in Jacoby 1929, Jacoby 1930, and Pownall 2009. (For the Catasterisms, ascribed in Antiquity to Eratosthenes but probably not by him, see Catasterisms.)

  • Bagordo, A. 1998. Die antiken Traktaten über das Drama. Mit einer Sammlung der Fragmente. Beiträge zur Altertumskunde 111. Stuttgart and Leipzig, Germany: Teubner.

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    Contains collection of the relevant fragments (pp. 127–136) with a discussion (pp. 37–40).

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    • Berger, H. 1880. Die geographischen Fragmente des Eratosthenes. Leipzig, Germany: B. G. Teubner.

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      Edition with commentary on the geographical fragments. Reprinted in 1964.

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      • Bernhardy, G. 1822. Eratosthenica. Berlin: G. Reimer.

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        The sole attempt to collect Eratosthenes’s fragments; inevitably out of date. Reprinted in 1968.

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        • Jacoby, F. 1929. Die Fragmente der Griechischen Historiker. Zweiter Teil. Zeitgeschichte. B. Spezialgeschichten, Autobiographien und Memoiren. Zeittafeln. Berlin: Weidmannsche Buchhandlung.

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          Contains collection of Eratosthenes’s chronographical fragments (pp. 1010–1021, under the number §241).

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          • Jacoby, F. 1930. Die Fragmente der Griechischen Historiker. Zweiter Teil. Zeitgeschichte. D. Kommentar zu Nr. 106–261. Berlin: Weidmannsche Buchhandlung.

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            Contains commentary on Eratosthenes’s chronographical fragments (pp. 704–715), under the number §241).

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            • Lloyd-Jones, H. 2005. Supplementum Supplementi Hellenistici. Texte und Kommentare 26. Berlin and New York: Walter de Gruyter.

              DOI: 10.1515/9783110896466Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

              Contains (pp. 48–49) a supplement to Lloyd-Jones and Parsons 1983.

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              • Lloyd-Jones, H., and P. J. Parsons. 1983. Supplementum Hellenisticum. Texte und Kommentare 11. Berlin and New York: Walter de Gruyter.

                DOI: 10.1515/9783110837766Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                Supplements (at pp. 183–186) the collection of Eratosthenes’s poetical fragments found in Powell 1925 with fragments discovered subsequently, including on papyrus.

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                • Powell, J. U. 1925. Collectanea Alexandrina. Reliquiae minores poetarum graecorum aetatis Ptolemaicae, 323–146 A.C., epicorum, elegiacorum, lyricorum, ethicorum. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

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                  Contains an edition of the poetical fragments of Eratosthenes then known (pp. 58–68).

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                  • Pownall, F. 2009. Eratosthenes of Cyrene. In Brill’s New Jacoby. Edited by I. Worthington, §241. Brill.

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                    Edition of the chronographical fragments: Greek text without apparatus, translation, commentary.

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                    • Rosokoki, A. 1995. Die Erigone des Eratosthenes. Eine kommentierte Ausgabe der Fragmente. Bibliothek der klassischen Altertumswissenschaften n.F. 2. Reihe Band 94. Heidelberg, Germany: Universitätsverlag C. Winter.

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                      Detailed modern edition with commentary on the fragments of Erigone.

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                      • Strecker, C. 1884. De Lycophrone Euphronio Eratosthene comicorum interpretibus. Diss. Greifswald. Alternberg, Germany: Pierer’sche Hofbuchdruckerei.

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                        The most recent edition of Eratosthenes’s scholarly work on ancient comedy.

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                        General Studies

                        The central, up to date, monograph-length study of Eratosthenes is Geus 2002, but Pfeiffer 1968, Fraser 1970, Fraser 1972, Blomqvist 1992, Bianchetti 2010, Montana 2015, and Thonemann 2018 are also valuable for getting an overall picture of the man and his areas of expertise. Cusset and Frangoulis 2008 offers a selection of chapters by different scholars on Eratosthenes’s works as a whole. Maass 1883 is out of date in some respects but still valuable.

                        • Bianchetti, S. 2010. Eratostene autore di ‘Historiai’ nel lemma della Suda. In Il lessico Suda e gli storici greci in frammenti. Atti dell´incontro internazionale, Vercelli, 6–7 novembre 2008. Edited by G. Vanotti, 329–343. Themata 6. Tivoli, Italy: Edizioni Tored.

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                          Discusses what the Byzantine encyclopedia the Suda means when it says that Eratosthenes wrote “Histories.”

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                          • Blomqvist, J. 1992. Alexandrian science: the case of Eratosthenes. In Ethnicity in Hellenistic Egypt. Edited by P. Bilde, T. Engberg-Pedersen, L. Hannestad, and J. Zahle, 53–73. Studies in Hellenistic Civilization 3. Aarhus, Denmark: Aarhus Univ. Press.

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                            Argues that Eratosthenes was attempting to establish the independence of science from philosophy.

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                            • Cusset, C., and H. Frangoulis, eds. 2008. Ératosthène: un athlète du savoir. Journée d’étude du vendredi 2 juin 2006, Université de Saint-Étienne. Centre Jean Palerne Mémoirs 31. Saint-Étienne, France: Publications de l’Université de Saint-Étienne.

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                              Important collection of essays on Eratosthenes’s poetical and scientific production, as well as on the Catasterisms.

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                              • Fraser, P. M. 1970. Eratosthenes of Cyrene. Proceedings of the British Academy 56:175–207.

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                                Excellent account of Eratosthenes’s achievement intended for a general audience.

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                                • Fraser, P. M. 1972. Ptolemaic Alexandria. 3 vols. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

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                                  Offers account of Eratosthenes in the context of a classic study of the city in which his studies took place; the relevant sections of the book are best found via the detailed index.

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                                  • Geus, K. 2002. Eratosthenes von Kyrene. Studien zur hellenistischen Kultur- und Wissenschaftsgeschichte. Münchener Beiträge zur Papyrusforschung und antiken Rechtsgeschichte 92. Munich: C. H. Beck.

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                                    Fundamental monograph on all aspects of Eratosthenes.

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                                    • Maass, E. 1883. Analecta Eratosthenica. Philologische Untersuchungen 6. Berlin: Weidmannsche Buchhandlung.

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                                      Contains important early work on Eratosthenes, especially the Erigone, and the Catasterisms attributed to him.

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                                      • Montana, F. 2015. Hellenistic scholarship. In Brill’s companion to Ancient Greek scholarship. 2 vols. Edited by F. Montanari, S. Matthaios, and A. Rengakos, 160–183. Berlin and Boston: de Gruyter.

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                                        Contains excellent summary of Eratosthenes’s achievement across the different scholarly fields (pp. 111–118).

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                                        • Pfeiffer, R. 1968. History of classical scholarship: From the beginnings to the end of the Hellenistic age. Oxford: Clarendon Press.

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                                          Contains important chapter on Eratosthenes (pp. 152–171) that discusses all aspects of his career.

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                                          • Thonemann, P. 2018. The Hellenistic age. A very short introduction. Oxford: Oxford Univ. Press.

                                            DOI: 10.1093/actrade/9780198746041.001.0001Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                            Contains excellent chapter dedicated to Eratosthenes (“Eratosthenes and the System of the World,” pp. 57–73).

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                                            Poetical Works

                                            Eratosthenes’s poetical oeuvre includes his Erigone, discussed by Solmsen 1947, Merkelbach 1963, Merkelbach 1964a, Merkelbach 1964b, Hollis 1991, Pàmias Massana 2001, White 2003, Broggiato 2014, and Rosokoki 2017 (see also Rosokoki 1995, cited under Editions, Commentaries, Translations), his Hermes, discussed by Di Gregorio 2010, and some epigrams, one of which is treated by Agosti 1997 (see also Leventhal 2017, cited under Mathematical, Musical, Astronomical, Philosophical Works). (See further Powell 1925 (cited under Editions, Commentaries, Translations), Lloyd-Jones and Parsons 1983 (cited under Editions, Commentaries, Translations), and Lloyd-Jones 2005, cited under Editions, Commentaries, Translations).

                                            Philological Works

                                            Eratosthenes coined the term “philology” (literally “love of words, language, ideas”) and was among the earliest figures to interrogate literary texts in a scholarly fashion. His great work On Old Comedy was in at least twelve books, and is the subject of Biles 1999, and Mureddu 2017 (see also Strecker 1884, Bagordo 1998, both cited under Editions, Commentaries, Translations); other aspects of his literary scholarship are investigated by Matthaios 2011, Montana 2013, and Tosi 1998.

                                            • Biles, Z. 1999. Eratosthenes on Plato Comicus: Didascaliae or parabasis? Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik 127:182–188.

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                                              Examines the sources for an important fragment of Eratosthenes’s On Old Comedy.

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                                              • Matthaios, S. 2011. Eratosthenes of Cyrene: Readings of his ‘grammar’ definition. In Ancient scholarship and grammar: Archetypes, concepts and contexts. Edited by S. Matthaios, F. Montanari, and A. Rengakos, 55–85. Trends in Classics supplement 8. Berlin and New York: De Gruyter.

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                                                Key modern discussion of Eratosthenes’s grammatical work.

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                                                • Montana, F. 2013. Aristotle, Eratosthenes and the beginnings of Alexandrian scholarship on the Archaia. Trends in Classics 5:144–158.

                                                  DOI: 10.1515/tc-2013-0007Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                  Argues for the influence of Aristotle on Eratosthenes’s literary scholarship.

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                                                  • Mureddu, P. 2017. Eratostene sulla archaia komoidia. In La commedia attica antica. Forme e contenuti. Edited by G. Mastromarco, P. Totaro, and B. Zimmermann, 151–172. Prosopa: Teatro greco, studi e commenti 10. Lecce and Brescia, Italy: Pensa MultiMedia Editore.

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                                                    Gives an account of the diverse content and methodology of Eratosthenes’s On Old Comedy.

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                                                    • Tosi, R. 1998. Appunti sulla filologia di Eratostene di Cirene. Eikasmos 9:327–346.

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                                                      Argues for the importance of Eratosthenes in the history of literary analysis and textual criticism.

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                                                      Geographical Works

                                                      Of all the branches of Eratosthenes’s achievement, his Geography has received the most scholarly attention, thanks to his calculation of the circumference of the earth (Engels 1985) and his influence on the later geographer Strabo, whose works did survive the end of Antiquity. There is no modern edition, but Roller 2010 provides a translation of the fragments. (See also Berger 1880, cited under Editions, Commentaries, Translations.) General accounts of Eratosthenes’s Geography can be found in Connors 2011, Irby 2012, and Bianchetti 2016; discussions of specific aspects of the work in Bianchetti 2012 and Seubert 2017; accounts of his influence on later geographers in Dueck, et al. 2005; Geus 2014–2015; Molina Marín 2017; Shcheglov 2017.

                                                      • Bianchetti, S. 2012. Il corno d’Africa nella Geografia di Eratostene. In Harmonia. Scritti di filologia classica in onore di Angelo Casanova. 2 vols. Edited by G. Bastianini, W. Lapini, and M. Tulli, 86–107. Studi e Saggi 109. Florence: Firenze Univ. Press.

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                                                        Carefully sifts the evidence for Eratosthenes’s familiarity with the Horn of Africa and discusses his likely sources.

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                                                        • Bianchetti, S. 2016. The ‘invention’ of geography: Eratosthenes of Cyrene. In Brill’s companion to ancient geography: The inhabited world in Greek and Roman tradition. Edited by S. Bianchetti, M. R. Cataudella, H. -J. Gehrke, 132–149. Leiden, The Netherlands, and Boston: Brill.

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                                                          Solid overall account of Eratosthenes’s contribution to the subject.

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                                                          • Connors, C. 2011. Eratosthenes, Strabo, and the geographer’s gaze. Pacific Coast Philology 46:139–152.

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                                                            Argues that Eratosthenes’s work was the result not of personal autopsy but of a critical evaluation of written sources.

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                                                            • Dueck, D., H. Lindsay, and S. Pothecary. eds. 2005. Strabo’s cultural geography: The making of a Kolossourgia. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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                                                              Volume on Eratosthenes’s successor Strabo, which makes clear his debt to the earlier scholar.

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                                                              • Engels, D. 1985. The length of Eratosthenes’ stade. American Journal of Philology American Journal of Philology 106:298–311.

                                                                DOI: 10.2307/295030Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                Discusses the length of the stade used by Eratosthenes to measure the circumference of the earth.

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                                                                • Geus, K. 2014–2015. Alexander und Eratosthenes: der Feldherr und der Geograph. Geographia Antiqua 23–4:53–61.

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                                                                  Surveys the different works of Eratosthenes to which Strabo makes reference.

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                                                                  • Irby, G. L. 2012. Mapping the world: Greek initiatives from Homer to Eratosthenes. In Ancient perspectives: Maps and their place in Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, and Rome. Edited by R. J. A. Talbert, 81–107: Chicago and London: Univ. of Chicago Press.

                                                                    DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226789408.003.0004Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                    Sets Eratosthenes’s Geography in the context of previous Greek attempts (literal or figurative) to map the earth.

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                                                                    • Molina Marín, A. I. 2017. Under the shadow of Eratosthenes: Strabo and the Alexander historians. In The Routledge companion to Strabo. Edited by D. Dueck, 294–305. London and New York: Routledge.

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                                                                      Examines how the information gathered from Alexander’s expeditions influenced Eratosthenes and, through him, Strabo.

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                                                                      • Roller, D. W. 2010. Eratosthenes’ Geography. Fragments collected and translated, with commentary and additional material. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press.

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                                                                        Collection of the fragments of Eratosthenes’s Geography, though in English translation only: no Greek text is provided.

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                                                                        • Seubert, P. 2017. Délimitation et divisions de l’Arabie, d’Eratosthène à Ptolémée. Geographia Antiqua 26:23–36.

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                                                                          Discussion of the boundaries of Arabia in Eratosthenes’s Geography.

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                                                                          • Shcheglov, D. A. 2017. Eratosthenes’ contribution to Ptolemy’s map of the world. Imago Mundi 69:159–175.

                                                                            DOI: 10.1080/03085694.2017.1312112Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                            Considers the text to which Ptolemy’s world map was indebted to Eratosthenes’ geographical work.

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                                                                            Mathematical, Musical, Astronomical, Philosophical Works

                                                                            Little of Eratosthenes’s philosophy and mathematics survives; the fragments are surveyed by Wolfer 1954 and (for philosophy) Solmsen 1942. Leventhal 2017 considers the context of his poem on the duplication of the cube. Eratosthenes’s contributions to ancient music (regarded as a branch of mathematics) are discussed by Creese 2010; the hypothesis that the Tazza Farnese reflects his astronomical work is considered by Merkelbach 1973 and Dwyer 1992.

                                                                            • Creese, D. 2010. The monochord in Ancient Greek harmonic science. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge Univ. Press.

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                                                                              Contains chapter (pp. 178–209) on Eratosthenes’s contribution to musical theory.

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                                                                              • Dwyer, E. J. 1992. The temporal allegory of the Tazza Farnese. American Journal of Archaeology 96:255–282.

                                                                                DOI: 10.2307/505925Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                Builds on and refines the argument of Merkelbach 1973.

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                                                                                • Leventhal, M. 2017. Eratosthenes’ Letter to Ptolemy: The literary mechanics of empire. American Journal of Philology 138:43–84.

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                                                                                  Examines the rhetorical strategies in the letter that accompanies Eratosthenes’s poem on the duplication of the cube.

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                                                                                  • Merkelbach, R. 1973. Die Tazza Farnese, die Gestirne der Nilflut und Eratosthenes. Zeitschrift für ägyptische Sprache und Altertumskunde 99:116–127.

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                                                                                    Argues that the Tazza Farnese or Farnese Cup, an agate bowl from 2nd-century BC Egypt with relief carvings, mixes Greek and Egyptian iconography and in so doing shows the influence of Eratosthenes, some of whose works reflect a similar mixing. Reprinted in 1996: Hestia und Erigone. Vorträge und Aufsätze (Stuttgart and Leipzig, Germany: B.G. Teubner), 198–216.

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                                                                                    • Solmsen, F. 1942. Eratosthenes as philsopher and poet. Transactions and Proceedings of the American Philological Association 73:192–213.

                                                                                      DOI: 10.2307/283547Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                      Examines how Eratosthenes’s philosophical views as set forth in his Platonicus underlie his work in several other fields, including in his poem Hermes. Reprinted in Kleine Schriften, 3 vols. (Hildesheim, Germany: Georg Olms 1968–1982), 203–224.

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                                                                                      • Wolfer, E. P. 1954. Eratosthenes von Kyrene als Mathematiker und Philosoph. Groningen, The Netherlands: Djakarta. P. Noordhoff N.V.

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                                                                                        Short helpful guide to the surviving remains of Eratosthenes’s mathematical and philosophical works.

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                                                                                        Chronographical Works

                                                                                        In Eratosthenes’s Chronographies the traditionally mythical chronology of early Greece was replaced by a systematic, scientific system that would be of crucial importance for Greek attempts to understand and study their past. Möller 2005 gives an excellent overall account, and individual points are discussed by Broggiato 2016, Edwards and Edwards 1974, and Kokkinos 2009. Grafton 1995 warns against exceeding the evidence in attributing advances to Eratothenes, and Theis 2014 discusses a text falsely attributed to him (see also Jacoby 1929, Jacoby 1930, cited under Editions, Commentaries, Translations).

                                                                                        • Broggiato, M. 2016. Il tempo degli eroi: Eratostene, Aristarco e la datazione di Esiodo. Seminari Romani di Cultura Greca ns 5:163–177.

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                                                                                          Examines the relative dating of Hesiod and Homer in Eratosthenes and the later scholar Aristarchus.

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                                                                                          • Edwards, G. P., and R. B. Edwards. 1974. Eratosthenes and the date of Cadmus. Classical Review New Sequence 24:181–182.

                                                                                            DOI: 10.1017/S0009840X00242807Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                            Shows that an often-repeated claim that Eratosthenes gave a date for Cadmus’s introduction of the alphabet into Greece is false.

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                                                                                            • Grafton, A. 1995. Tradition and technique in historical chronology. In Ancient history and the Antiquarian: Essays in memory of Arnaldo Momigliano. Edited by M. H. Crawford and C. R. Ligota, 15–31. Warburg Institute Colloquia 2. London: Warburg Institute.

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                                                                                              Argues that some of the evidence for Eratosthenes’s distinctive contribution to chronography has been exaggerated or misinterpreted by scholars.

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                                                                                              • Kokkinos, N. 2009. Ancient chronology, Eratosthenes and the dating of the fall of Troy. Ancient West & East 8:37–56.

                                                                                                DOI: 10.2143/AWE.8.0.2045837Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                Argues that Eratosthenes’s date for the fall of Troy (1183) is a compromise between competing sets of evidence that put it both later and earlier than that date.

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                                                                                                • Möller, A. 2005. Epoch-making Eratosthenes. Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Studies 45:245–260.

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                                                                                                  Shows how Eratosthenes in his Chronographies succeeded in combining the Olympic victor list with the Spartan king list.

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                                                                                                  • Theis, C. 2014. Pseudo-Eratosthenes und seine vierte Dynastie. Chronique d’Égypte 89:34–50.

                                                                                                    DOI: 10.1484/J.CDE.5.102508Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                    Discussion of an Egyptian king-list attributed to Eratosthenes but probably not by him.

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                                                                                                    Catasterisms

                                                                                                    The Catasterisms (the title is modern, with no ancient authority) are a series of more than forty prose narratives describing the mythical origins of various celestial bodies. They circulated in Antiquity under Eratosthenes’s name; most modern scholars have not accepted that they were written by Eratosthenes or derive from his writings, but that has been challenged by more recent work, so the issue is far from settled. Editions of the Greek text, some with translation and/or commentary, include Robert 1878, and more recently Pàmias i Massana 2004, Pàmias and Geus 2007, Santoni 2010, and Pàmias i Massana and Zucker 2013. Condos 1997 provides an English translation and commentary. A collection of essays can be found in Pàmias 2016; discussions of key themes and ideas are available in Hübner 1998, Pàmias 2004, Pàmias 2009, and Robinson 2013.

                                                                                                    • Condos, T. 1997. Star myths of the Greeks and Romans: A sourcebook containing the constellations of Pseudo-Eratosthenes and the Poetic Astronomy of Hyginus. Grand Rapids, MI: Phanes.

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                                                                                                      Translation of and commentary on the Catasterisms, together with Hyginus’s account of constellation myths, which often derives from the earlier work.

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                                                                                                      • Hübner, W. 1998. Die Lyra cosmica des Eratosthenes: Das neunte Sternbild der Musen mit neun Sternen und neun Saiten. Museum Helveticum 55:84–111.

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                                                                                                        Examines some of the myths of the Catasterisms and reflects on their authenticity and transmission.

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                                                                                                        • Pàmias, J. 2004. Dionysus and donkeys on the streets of Alexandria: Eratosthenes’ criticism of Ptolemaic ideology. Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 102:191–198.

                                                                                                          DOI: 10.2307/4150038Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                          Argues that certain mythical choices in the Catasterisms reflect an attack by Eratosthenes on Ptolemaic religious ideology.

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                                                                                                          • Pàmias, J. 2009. Eratosthenes and the women: Reversal in literature and ritual. Classical Philology 104:208–213.

                                                                                                            DOI: 10.1086/605343Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                            Examines a passage in the Catasterisms in which the goddess Justice is said to have remained on earth among women but not men.

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                                                                                                            • Pàmias, J. 2016. Eratosthenes’ Catasterisms. Receptions and translations. Mering, Germany: Utopica Verlag.

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                                                                                                              Important collection of essays on the reception and translation of the Catasterisms.

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                                                                                                              • Pàmias, J., and Geus, K. 2007. Eratosthenes, Sternsagen (Catasterismi). Bibliotheca Classicorum 2. Oberhaid, Germany: Utopica.

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                                                                                                                German edition, translation, and notes.

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                                                                                                                • Pàmias i Massana, J. 2004. Eratòstenes de Cirene. Catasterismes. Barcelona: Fundació Bernat Metge.

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                                                                                                                  Text, Catalan translation, and notes.

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                                                                                                                  • Pàmias i Massana, J., and A. Zucker. 2013. Eratosthène de Cyrène. Catastérismes. Collection des universités de France Série grecque: Collection Budé 497. Paris: Les Belles Lettres.

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                                                                                                                    Critical edition by Pàmias i Massana, French translation by Zucker, introduction by both.

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                                                                                                                    • Robert, C. 1878. Eratosthenis Catasterismorum reliquiae. Berlin: Weidmann.

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                                                                                                                      Reprinted 1963. Still essential edition with commentary.

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                                                                                                                      • Robinson, M. 2013. Ovid and the Catasterismi of Eratosthenes. American Journal of Philology 134:445–480.

                                                                                                                        DOI: 10.1353/ajp.2013.0026Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                        Looks at the interaction between Ovid’s Fasti and the Catasterisms ascribed to Eratosthenes.

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                                                                                                                        • Santoni, A. 2010. Eratostene. Epitome dei Catasterismi. Origine delle costellazioni e disposizione delle stelle. Il mito: Testi e saggi 6. Pisa, Italy: Edizioni ETS.

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                                                                                                                          Italian introduction, translation, and notes.

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                                                                                                                          Reception and Influence

                                                                                                                          Eratosthenes’s influence on Virgil is discussed by Thomas 1986. He is depicted in a painting by Bernardo Strozzi (c. 1635), which has inspired a recent contribution to physics teaching (Božić and Ducloy 2008); he has also inspired a novel based around his measurement of the earth (Guedj 2003).

                                                                                                                          • Božić, M., and M. Ducloy. 2008. Eratosthenes’ teachings with a globe in a school yard. Physics Education 43:165–172.

                                                                                                                            DOI: 10.1088/0031-9120/43/2/005Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                            A painting by Bernardo Strozzi of Eratosthenes teaching a pupil by means of a globe is used to encourage the use of globes in contemporary pedagogy.

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                                                                                                                            • Guedj, D. 2003. Les Cheveux de Bérénice. Seuil.

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                                                                                                                              Novel set around Eratosthenes’s measuring of the earth’s circumference. Translated into Italian as D. Guedj, La chioma di Berenice (Milan: Longanesi).

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                                                                                                                              • Thomas, R. F. 1986. Virgil’s Georgics and the art of reference. Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 90:171–198.

                                                                                                                                DOI: 10.2307/311468Save Citation »Export Citation »E-mail Citation »

                                                                                                                                Examines (pp. 195–198) the influence of Eratosthenes’s Hermes on a passage of Virgil’s Georgics. Reprinted in 1999. Reading Virgil and His Texts: Studies in Intertextuality (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, pp. 114–141 (relevant section at pp. 137–140).

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