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Abstract | Διονύσιος: The Grammarian, the Potter, and the Ghosts

Four grammatika vases bearing signatures are the starting point of this paper, which aims to uncover the people behind the objects, focusing on the quest of their identity and their role in the creation and dissemination of one of the most distinctive varieties of Hellenistic relief pottery. The fusion of literature and scholarship on the surface of everyday vessels, in combination with the archaeological data that point to a sympotic environment and context, gives to this quest a completely new direction, pointing towards a world rather far from the one of pottery workshops and closer to that of libraries. By aiming to analyze the details of this puzzling relationship between γραμματικὴ τέχνη on the one hand and γραμματικὸν ποτήριον on the other, the present paper attempts a fresh reading of the written sources, searching for their common denominator, none other than the γραμματικὸς himself, and using as a guiding thread only one name: Διονύσιος.

About Maria Nasioula

Maria Nasioula (PhD Aristotle University of Thessaloniki) is a Classical Archaeologist and, currently, a research collaborator of the Center for the Greek Language in Thessaloniki. As a field archaeologist, working for the Hellenic Ministry of Culture since 2000, she has taken part in excavations all over Macedonia (Dion, Vergina, Agios Athanasios-Macedonian Tomb, Thessaloniki, Kilkis-Polykastro, Philippoi-Ancient Theatre, Thasos-Limenaria), while she has engaged in several research projects. Her research interests expand on the archaeology, history and epigraphy of ancient Macedonia, with a particular emphasis on the relationship of Macedonians with γράμματα, including the role of the ancient scholarship and the libraries. While at CHS, she will pursue further research on grammatika vases, a group of Hellenistic relief vases with inscribed narrative scenes, focusing on the relationship between the inscriptions on these vases and the texts on surviving literary sources, in order to investigate the literary character of their decoration and the information it provides about Greek literature and its reception in the last two Hellenistic centuries. Her immediate plan and actual aim is to publish a monograph, as well as to establish an advanced digital database on the inscriptions of grammatika vases.

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