ARATOR d.ca.550. 6th-c.
Poet, born perhaps at Milan, lived 490550.
Photo Gallery Arator
What little we know of him is from some Dictiones of Ennodius, Cassiodorus's Variae, and from his own letters. He was first educated by his father, a well-educated man; after his father's death he completed his studies thanks to the patronage of Bishop Lawrence of Milan, first under Ennodius, then under Deuterius.
When Ennodius was elected bishop of Pavia ca. 513, ARATOR moved to Ravenna, where he became close friends with his contemporary Parthenius and broadened his cultural horizons by reading Caesarius Ep. To Parthenius vv.
39ff. Some Ambrosian hymns, the work of one Decentius whom Ebert identifies with Dracontius and Manitius with Sedulius and esp. Some compositions of Sidonius Apollinaris. The influence of other poets can also be detected in his work, such as Prudentius, Claudian and paraphrastic poetry in general.
After achieving considerable fame as a lawyer, in 526 he took part in a Dalmatian ambassadorial mission to Theodoric, who was impressed with his skillful oratory as was Theodoric's successor Athalaric, and he was called to court as comes domesticorum and comes privatorum. At some time during Justinian's Gothic war 535554 he moved to Rome, where he was ordained subdeacon by Pope Vigilius, who commissioned him to compose and read publicly in S.Pietro in Vincoli the De actibus apostolorum, a poem in 2326 hexameters in two books.
The reading was done over 40 days beginning on 13 April 544. The work, centered on the life of the apostles Peter and Paul, is preceded by two short letters in elegiac distichs addressed to Florianus and to Pope Vigilius; it ends with another letter in 51 distichs to his friend Parthenius. These letters and esp.
The one to Parthenius are of considerable importance, as they explain the poetic intentions that led ARATOR to choose a theme with no parallels in paraphrastic poetry. Uncertain as he says in the letter to Parthenius, vv. 69-78 whether to compose hymns after the manner of Ambrose or a paraphrase of Genesis, ARATOR opted for Luke's Acts of the Apostles, whose theological substrate perhaps seemed to him to be the point of encounter between the OT and NT.
He paraphrased its material faithfully in some places, while in other places he gave much room to allegorical interpretation, following a precise poetic program, which he clarified in vv. 20-22 of the letter to Vigilius. Leaving out the epic element present in Avitus's paraphrases and taking Sedulius's tendencies to their extreme consequences, ARATOR provided much room for the mystical- allegorical element, which explains the poem's popularity in the Middle Ages, attested, e.g. by Bede the Venerable and the anonymous 11th-c.
Author of a short biblical poem in old French dialect, which expressly cites ARATOR as its source. Editions: PL 68, 63-252; A.P. McKirlay, CSEL 72; A.P.
Orbn, Ein anonymer ARATORkommentar in Hs. London, Royal MS. 15A V: Editio princeps, Teil 1 ARATOR, Ad Florianum 1 – Historia apostolica 1, 514, Sacris Erudiri 38 1998-1999, 316-351; Id. Ein anonymer ARATORkommentar in Hs.
London, Royal MS. 15A V: Editio princeps, Teil 2 ARATOR, Historia apostolica 1, 5152, 1250, Sacris Erudiri 40 2001 131-229. Studies: A.
Ansorge, De Amatore veterum poetarum latinorum imitatore, Breslau 1914; R.Anastasi, Dati biografici su Amatore in Ennodio: MSLC 1947 145-152; A.Hudson-Williams: VChr 1953 89-97; K.
Thraede, ARATOR: JbAC 4 1961 187-196; F.Chtillon, ARATOR dclamateur antijuif: RMAL 19 1963 5-128; 197-216; 20 1964 185-225; S.Blomgren, Ad ARATORem et Fortunatum adnotationes: Eranos 72 1974 143-155; R.J.
Schrader, ARATOR: Revaluation: CF 31 1977 64-77; D.Kartschoke, Bibeldichtung, Munich 1975, 53-55; 72-74; 93-97; P.A. Deproost, L'ap´tre Pierre dans une pope du IVe si¨cle: l'Historia apostolica d'ARATOR Collection des ‰tudes Augustiniennes.
Srie Antiquit 126, Paris 1990; J.Schwind, ARATOR-Studien, Gttingen 1990; R.Hillier, ARATOR on the Acts of the Apostles: A Baptismal Commentary, Oxford-New York 1993; J.
Schwind, Sprachliche und exegetische Beobachtungen zu ARATOR, Stuttgart 1995; B.Bureau, Lettre et sense mystique dans l'Historia apostolica d'ARATOR. Exg¨se et pope Collection des ‰tudes Augustiniennes.
Srie Antiquit 153, Paris 1997; P.A. Deproost, Ficta et facta. La condamnation du mensonge des po¨tes dans la posie latine chrtienne: REAug 44 1998 101-121. ARATOR | NCpedia travelquaz
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