A Pepaideumenoi's Novel. Sophistry in Longus' Daphnis and Chloe

  • Jeroen Lauwers


This paper aims to explore the intellectual dialogue between Longus, the learned composer of the Daphnis and Chloe novel, and his learned reader public. In support of the traditional view that Longus should firmly be situated in the context of the so-called Second Sophistic, it is argued that some narratological techniques deployed in the novel find their parallel in the practice of Second Sophistic speech delivery and other sorts of prose literature from this cultural climate. By means of an analysis of the proem and a scene from book II, the paper shows how reader-response and generic expectations shape a framework for an astute reader of the novel to prove his distinguished position as a pepaideumenos in opposition to a naive reader of this seemingly - but only seemingly - simple story.

Jeroen Lauwers (K.U.Leuven) is a fellow of the Research Foundation – Flanders (Belgium). His research revolves around notions of authority and self-presentation in Second Sophistic oratory, with particular attention to Maximus of Tyre. His work explores the dynamics of reader/hearer response and the place of the author within the culture of the Second Sophistic.