Stephanus’ Sources: the Tradition of <i>ἐθνικά</i>

P. M. Fraser

in Greek Ethnic Terminology

Published by British Academy

Published in print November 2009 | ISBN: 9780197264287
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191753978 | DOI:

Series: Lexicon of Greek Personal Names

Stephanus’ Sources: the Tradition of ἐθνικά

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This chapter focuses on some problems associated with Stephanus' ultimate sources, and considers how much his text contributes to the subject of ethnic terminology. Stephanus is not the earliest writer on or compiler of a catalogue of places and ethnics, but his work alone survives, though only in an epitomised form, and is thus the essential part of the evidence. The goal is to interrogate the text in the hope that it will throw more light on the various aspects of ethnic formations in general use. The chapter examines the text of the Epitome with especial reference to the main sources of earlier date, with particular consideration to (a) Alexander Polyhistor, of Miletus, a contemporary of Sulla, to whom he owed his Roman citizenship, with the nomen Cornelius, whose enormous output — some thirty separate titles in all — included numerous works concerned with ethnic forms; (b) Herennius Philon of Byblos, the Phoenician‐Greek ‘translator’ or author of the Phoenician history which passed under the name of Sanchuniathon, and author of a work on ‘Famous Cities and their Famous Sons’, which included much information on ethnic forms; and (c) Alexandrian Oros, of the fourth/fifth century ad, who formed perhaps the final link between Stephanus and his predecessors, and also between Stephanus and contemporary or later writers.

Keywords: Stephanus; ethnics; ethnic formations; ethnic terminology; Alexander Polyhistor; Herennius Philon; Alexandrian Oros

Chapter.  11247 words. 

Subjects: Classical Literature

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