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Novella

(1,336 words)

Author(s): Fusillo, Massimo (L'Aquila) | Galli, Lucia (Florence) | Schönbeck, Hans-Peter (Halle/Saale)
[German version] I. Greek There is no Greek term that accurately translates the modern concept of ‘novella’ and there is nothing in extant Greek literature comparable to the work of medieval novella-writers or to modern collections of short-stories (coming closest to it are perhaps the  Tóxaris of Lucian [1] and the Historia lausiaca of Palladius, while works like the Narrationes amatoriae attributed to Plutarch might better be classified as mythography). Even if no ancient source explicitly attests it, the opinio communis, subscribing to the hypothesis of E. Rohde [1], tak…

Folk-tales

(3,118 words)

Author(s): Käppel, Lutz (Kiel) | Röllig, Wolfgang (Tübingen) | Haas, Volkert (Berlin) | Schönbeck, Hans-Peter (Halle/Saale)
[German version] I. Term and genre In antiquity the folk-tale as a well-defined literary genre with unequivocally established terminology was not known. However, since oral narratives, partly put down in writing, that according to the modern meaning of the term can undoubtedly be designated as folk-tales, existed in all ages and all cultures, the issue of the folk-tale becomes a meaningful and inevitable subject also with regard to antiquity. The German word ‘Märchen’ is derived from OHG māri, MHG diu/daz maere = ‘report’, ‘message’, i.e. ‘narrative’, still entirely in the …