Who Was the Ancient Roman Poet Famous for His "Odes"?


Quick Answer

The ancient Roman poet famous for his "Odes" is Quintus Horatius Flaccus, also known as Horace. Horace was born on December 8, 65 B.C. in Venusia, Italy and died on November 27, 8 B.C. He was a Latin lyric poet, a literary critic and a satirist who lived under the reign of Augustus.

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Horace was the son of a freed slave who sent him to one of the most highly regarded schools in Rome, the Grammaticus Orbilius. He later left Rome and enrolled in The Academy in Athens, which was established by Plato. Horace was introduced to Greek lyric poetry in Athens, which later influenced his own work. After the death of Julius Caesar, Horace was recruited to join the military where he was appointed as a high ranking staff officer in Brutus's army. Horace fought and lost in the Battle of Philippi when Brutus's army was defeated. He fled the field leaving his shield behind, but was soon offered amnesty by Augustus and moved to Rome where he worked as a clerk.

Horace's poetic career started under Augustus when he wrote the first three books of the "Odes," "The Epodes." The "Odes" span a vast genre of themes and address everyday matters, such as love, joy and life. The "Odes" have influenced the works of some of the greatest poets, including Alexander Pope, Robert Frost and Wystan Hugh Auden.

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