A Metrical Search Engine for Poetry in Ancient Greek

Award Year: 
Project Director(s): 

Michael A. Tueller | Professor of the Classics | School of International Letters and Cultures

Over the past few decades, humanities research has been revolutionized by the possibilities of searching through a large corpus of texts. Ancient Greek literature in particular has an excellent corpus and search tool in the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae, which can search for combinations of letters or words.

This project creates a tool that can search for metrical patterns within a corpus of unmodified ancient Greek texts written in the standard ancient Greek alphabet (expressed in Unicode). We already know that ancient poets tightly controlled their meter, so “quoting” one another’s meter would indicate affiliations. This project will allow us to discover these affiliations efficiently and thus reach conclusions about influence and even allusive meaning.

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