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Lucan

From Academic Kids

There is also a town named Lucan in Ireland
See also Earl of Lucan

Marcus Annaeus Lucanus (November 3, AD 39 - April 30, 65), better known in English as Lucan, was a Roman poet, and is one of the outstanding figures of the Silver Latin period.

Lucan was born in Cordoba in present-day Spain, and was the nephew of Seneca the Younger. He mentioned Mevania, and may have spent time there. There is reason to believe he studied under the Stoic philosopher Cornutus.

He found success under Nero, and won a prize for poetry in AD 60. His epic poem, Pharsalia (but labelled Bellum civile in the manuscripts), which told the story of the civil war between Julius Caesar and Pompey, was much acclaimed. However, he soon fell out of favor, and was lured into the conspiracy of Piso. His treason having been discovered, he was obliged to commit suicide by opening a vein, but not before incriminating his mother (among others) in hopes of a pardon.

As with Virgil's masterpiece, Lucan's epic poem was unfinished at the time of his death, and its untidy condition is reflected in its 400 complete and partial copies. As A.E. Housman stated in the preface to his edition of 1926, "the manuscripts group themselves not in families but in factions; their dissidences and agreements are temporary and transient . . . and the true line of division is between the variants themselves, not between the manuscripts which offer them."

Pharsalia was celebrated during the Middle Ages; Dante in De Volgari Eloquentia mentions Lucan, along with Ovid, Virgil and Statius as one of the four regulati poetae (ii, vi, 7). In Inferno Dante ranks him side by side with Homer, Horace, Ovid and Virgil (Inferno,IV,88).

His work had tremendous influence in the poetry and drama of the 17th century. Shelley, Southey and Macaulay all praised his work.de:Marcus Annaeus Lucanus fr:Lucain la:Lucanus nl:Lucanus pl:Lukan

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