According to many recent interpretations of Catullus 101, the ritual performance it describes serves primarily as a foil, highlighting the greater expressiveness and communicative power of the poem itself. I argue instead for using the complexities of Roman funerary ritual as a model for understanding the poem's ambiguities. As funerary offerings at once establish a bond between family members and the dead and affirm a distinction between them that allows the survivors to rejoin the society of the living, so the poem articulates a tension between assertions of the brother's absence and intimations of his presence as addressee, even as speaker. Similarly, the split between the poem's fictional context as a one-time-only farewell to the brother and its existence as a repeatable literary artifact further accentuates the double allegiance of the poet. In the second section I consider how the poem, without being an epitaph itself, fulfills the functions of an epitaph, by allowing for the re-performance of the ritual, constructing the opposition between permanence and temporality present in the epitaph/monument complex, "inscribing" the brother's death at the prominent literary "crossroads" of the beginning of the Odyssey, and finally making the commemoration of the brother performed through each reading of the poem a sacrum that builds its audience into a community.

[Footnotes]

[Footnotes]
1
Biondi 1976: 413n. 22
Robinson 1965: 62.
2
Quinn 1973: 440
Fitzgerald 1995: 187
Biondi 1976: 410.
3
Wiseman 1969
Syndikus 1987: 106-107.
4
Paratore 1963: 563.
5
Syndikus 1987: 107.
6
Heliodora (AP 7.476)
Wilamowitz 1924: 1.234
7
Ellis 1889: 480
Fordyce 1961: 388
Thomson 1997: 536
Gelzer's 1992: 26-27
Biondi 1976: 415
8
Scheid 1984a: esp. 118-19
Maurin 1984.
9
Scheid 1984a: 119ff. esp. 126
Suet. Aug. 100.
10
Donatus ad Ter. Ad. 587
Latte 1967: 102
Scheid 1984a: 130f.
11
Maurin's 1984: 204-205
12
Scheid 1984b
13
Scheid 1984a: 134-36
14
Scheid 1984a: 132-34
Danka 1976.
15
Scheid 1984a: 134 and n.75
Servius adAen. 5.79: PURPUREOS SPARGIT FLORES ad sanguinis imitationem.
16
De Marchi 1896: 1.199-208.
17
Janan 1994: 115-19.
18
Cons. ad Marc. 2.3-3.2
21
Biondi 1976: 418
Conte 1974: lln. 18
1986: 36n. 8
22
Latte 1967: l01n. 3.
23
Quinn 1973: 441.
24
Humphreys 1981: 268.
26
Misenus (Aen. 6.213)
Aen. 5.80-81
Williams 1960: 58
Catullus 101
Aen. 1.553, 1.583
Hor. C. 2.7.27-28.
Monteleone 1976
Thomson 1997: 537
27
Starr 1987: 213-15.
28
CIL 1.1732.2 and 6.14786.4.
29
Varro Ling. 6.57
30
Hunter 1992: 121.
31
Cugusi 1985: 200-17
CE 1845
32
Janan 1994: 127
33
Day 1989.
34
Anth. Lat. 721.
Ostia, CIL 14.356
CE 1450
CE 513
CE 1278.
35
CE 52.8.
36
CIL 11.6243
Lattimore 1962: 256-58.
37
CE 1278.6
CE 1255.1
Häausle 1980: 61-63.
38
Aen. 6.231.
Fordyce 1961: 390
Misenus' memory (6.232-35).
39
Howe 1974: 276.
40
Tinuleia (Ann. Epigr. 1946: 208)
CE 1084
Häausle 1980: 62f.
41
Bettini 1991: 176ff.
42
Dupont 1987.
43
Tac. Ann. 3.5
Dio 55.2
Flower 1996: 232-33.
Dio 56.32.2
44
Flower 1996: 159-84
45
CE 479.7.
46
Bodel 1997: 20ff.
CE 1185
Bodel 1997: 23
Aen. 3.303-305
CE1212.13.
47
Bodel 1997: 20
48
Fitzgerald 1995: 188-89
Zetzel 1982: 665.
49
CE 958
Pliny HN 35.6
Bettini 1991: 176.
51
Horace C. 3.30.1
Ovid Met. 15.872.
52
Woolf 1996: 27-28
Koortbojian 1996
Svenbro 1988: 3-32.
Häusle 1980: 55.
53
Koortbojian 1996: 229-31
54
CE 13.
Sanders 1970: 320.
55
Minyard 1988
Thomson 1997: 6-11
56
Starr 1987.
57
Thomson 1997: 472-74.
58
Miller 1994 (esp. 1-2, 55-57)
59
Hausle 1980: 105n. 212
Bruns' 1950: 9f.
60
Williams 1968: 186-87
62
Conte 1986: 36n. 8.
63
Conte 1986: 32-40.
Monteleone 1976
Catullus 101.1
64
Cugusi 1985: 214-15
CE 257A
M. Abramič in Bull. Arch. Hist. Dalm. 50 (1928-1929): 57.
65
Miller 1988: 131.
66
Janan 1994: 130.
67
Depew 1997.
68
Meyer 1990.
71
Tatum 1997.
72
Granarolo 1967: 27-28.
Tibullus (1.3.5)
Ep. 6.10.5
Woolf 1996: 25f.

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