Saturday, June 11, 2005
Newly Discovered Works
But I ask myself why. I haven't heard all of Bach's already extant works, so why should I be so interested in the discovery of a new one?
Years ago there was a flurry of excitement about the discovery of a poem by Archilochus, the so-called Cologne epode, and we graduate students dutifully sat in respectful silence while a visiting lecturer pontificated about it. And now scholars are gaga about the possiblity of new fragments of ancient works revealed in Oxyrhynchus papyri by multispectral imaging.
I haven't read every bit of the ancient Greek literature that's been available on library shelves for centuries, not by a long shot, so I don't understand why the newly discovered bits should exert such fascination over me. Yet they do.