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Marcelina Gilka

Marcelina Gilka

After completing most of my primary education in the village of Kmiecin (Poland) and my secondary education at the Sankt-Ansgar-Schule in Hamburg (Germany), I commenced an undergraduate degree in Classical Studies and Spanish here at Exeter. However, after my first year I decided that I would prefer to spend all of my study time on Greek and Latin literature which resulted in graduating with a BA in Classics. After an excursion to Balliol College, Oxford for an MSt in Greek and Latin Languages and Literature, I am now back in Exeter to pursue a Classics PhD under the supervision of Professor Daniel Ogden.

My PhD undertaking is a study of the mythological tradition of antehomerica (i.e. the events that have led to the Trojan War) from the archaic period up to Late Antiquity. The research aims at tracing the different stages in the development of the myth, marking changes and tracking innovations, as well as finding explanations for them. I explore the chains of influences between different versions, and if possible indicate why an author may have chosen to follow or reject a particular tradition. The texts covered span every period and genre from the Epic Cycle through to late antique Christian chronicles (and occasionally beyond), in both Latin and Greek. Within this, I especially focus on two epyllia which are both entitled The Abduction of Helen and were both composed around 500 AD, but are otherwise quite unlike each other in their treatment of the myth; one was written by Colluthus of Lycopolis in Egypt and the other by Dracontius from Carthage, Africa.

 

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