L. Pompo'nius Bononiensis
the most celebrated writer of Fabulae Atellanae, was a native of Bononia (Bologna) in northern Italy, as his surname shows, and flourished in B. C. 91. (Euseb. Chron.
The nature of the Fabulae Atellanae
is described at length in the Dict. of Antiq. ;
and it is therefore only necessary to state here that these farces were originally not written, but produced by the ready fertility of the Italian improvvisatori ;
and that it is probable that Pomponius and his contemporay Novius [NOVIUS] were the first to write regular dramas of this kind. (Comp. Veil. Pat. 2.9; Macrob. Saturn.
1.10.) Pomponius is frequently referred to by the Roman grammarians, who have preserved the titles of many of his plays.
The fragments which have thus come down to us are collected by Bothe, Poetae Scenici Latin. vol. v., Fragm. vol. ii. pp. 103-124
, and by Munk, De L. Pomponio Bononiensi, &c., Glogaviae, 1827.
(Comp. Schober, Ueber die Attellanischen Schauspiele,
There is an epigram of four lines, which Priscian attributes to Pomponius (p. 602, ed. Putschius) ; but in the passage of Varro (de L. L.
7.28, ed. Müller), from which Priscian took it, the author of the epigram is called Papinius.