Abstract

Did archaic Greek poets think that speech should be factually informative? Studies in the "history of thought" suggest that archaic culture offered no developed alternative to the opposition of truth to falsehood judged in relationship to fact. But the mythic poems display more interest in person-to-person agreement than eye-to-object fidelity. This is seen in the numerous stories where partnerships are negotiated and symbolized through tokens whose impersonal value is flagrantly disregarded. In the Hymn to Hermes, facetious non-truths establish intimacy and cooperation among those who understand them.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1086-329X
Print ISSN
0190-0013
Pages
pp. 409-424
Launched on MUSE
2010-10-02
Open Access
No
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