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Zeitschrift für antike Literatur und ihre Rezeption / A Journal for Ancient Literature and its Reception

Ed. by Föllinger, Sabine / Fuhrer, Therese / Reinhardt, Tobias / Stenger, Jan / Vöhler, Martin

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Volume 159, Issue 2


Stative Historical Presents in Greek Tragedy: Are They Real?

Albert Rijksbaron
Published Online: 2015-11-04 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/phil-2015-0017


In Philologus 156, 2012, Gerard Boter claimed that in Greek the historical present is not only found with telic, but also with atelic and durative verbs, like κεῖμαι ‘lie’. The latter possibility had been denied by e.g. Schwyzer/Debrunner (“nicht von Zuständen”) and Ruipérez (“des verbes comme εἰμί, κεῖμαι n’apparaissent jamais au présent historique”), and by the author of this paper. Boter’s claim especially concerned Greek tragedy. Using the material discussed by Boter the author argues that for a number of reasons Boter’s view should be rejected.

Keywords: Ancient Greek; historical present; actual present; messenger speeches; opening scenes; ἐναγώνιος


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About the article

Published Online: 2015-11-04

Published in Print: 2015-11-01

Citation Information: Philologus, Volume 159, Issue 2, Pages 224–250, ISSN (Online) 2196-7008, ISSN (Print) 0031-7985, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/phil-2015-0017.

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