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A Brief Bio of Pindar

Written by: PoetrySoup

Pindar, the greatest lyric poet of Greece, and for virgin purity of imagination ranked by Ruskin along with Homer, Virgil, Dante, and Scott; born near Thebes, in Boeotia, of a musical family, and began his musical education by practice on the flute, while he was assisted in his art by the example of his countrywoman Corinna, who competed with and defeated him more than once at the public festivals; he was a welcome visitor at the courts of all the Greek princes of the period, and not the less honoured that he condescended to no flattery and attuned his lyre to no sentiment but what would find an echo in every noble heart; he excelled in every department of lyric poetry, hymns to the gods, the praises of heroes, pæans of victory, choral songs, festal songs and dirges, but of these only a few remain, his Epinikia, a collection of triumphal odes in celebration of the successes achieved at the great national games of Greece; he was not only esteemed the greatest of lyric poets by his countrymen, but is without a rival still; when Alexander destroyed Thebes he spared the house of Pindar (522-442 B.C.).


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