A Dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology

Smith, William

A Dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology. William Smith, LLD, ed. 1890

MYTILENAEUS (Ἀλφειός Μυτιληναῖος), the author of about twelve epigrams in the Greek Anthology, some of which seen to point out the time when he wrote. In the seventh epigram (Jacobs) he refers to the state of the Roman empire, as embracing almost all the known world; in the ninth he speaks of the restored and flourishing city of Troy; and in the tenth he alludes to an epigram by Antipater Sidonius. Now Antipater lived under Augustus, and Troy had received great favours from Julius Caesar and Augustus. (Strab. xiii. p.889.) Hence it is not improbable that Alpheus wrote under Augustus. It is true that in the fourth epigram he addresses a certain Macrinus, but there is no reason to suppose that this was the emperor Macrinus. Another difficulty has been started, on the ground that other. the eleventh epigram was inscribed, as we learn from Pausanias (8.52.3), on the statue of Philopoemen in Tegea, and that it is very improbable that such a statue should have stood without an inscription till the time of Alpheus. But the simple fact is, that no reason can be discovered for attributing this epigram to Alpheus. (Jacobs, Anthol. Graec. xiii. p. 839.)