, but the former is more correct).
In the Greek Anthology there are sixteen epigrams under this name, which are, however, the productions of different poets. (Brunck, Anal.
vol. i. pp. 164-167; Jacobs, Anth. Graec
vol. i. pp. 96-99.)
In the Vatican MS. some of the epigrams are headed Ευΐνου
, the 7th is headed Εὐήνου Ἀσκαλωνίτου
, the 12th Εὐΐνου Ἀθηναίου
, the 14th Εὐήνου Σικελιώτου
, and the last Εὐήνου γραμματικοῦ
The best known poets of this name are two elegiac poets of Paros, mentioned by Eratosthenes (apud Harpocrat. s. v. Εὔηνος
), who says that only the younger was celebrated, and that one of them (he does not say which) was mentioned by Plato.
There are, in fact, several passages in which Plato refers to Evenus, somewhat ironically, as at once a sophist or philosopher and a poet. (Apolog. Socr.
p. 20b., Phaed.
p. 60d., Phaedr.
According to Maximus Tyrius (Diss.
38.4. p. 225), Evenus was the instructor of Socrates in poetry, a statement which derives some countenance from a passage in Plato (Phaed. l.c.
), from which it may also be inferred that Evenus was alive at the time of Socrates's death, but at such an advanced age that he was likely soon to follow him. Eusebius (Chron. Arm.
) places him at the 30th Olympiad (B. C. 460) and onwards. His poetry was gnomic, that is, it formed the vehicle for expressing philosophic maxims and opinions.
The first six of the epigrams in the Anthology are of this character, and may therefore be ascribed to him with tolerable certainty. Perhaps, too, the fifteenth should be assigned to him.
The other Evenus of Paros wrote Ἐρωτικά
, as we learn from the express testimony of Artemidortus (Oneirocr.
1.5), and from a passage of Arrian (Epictet.
4.9), in which Evenus is mentioned in conjunction with Aristeides. [See vol. i. p. 296.] A few other fragments of his poetry are extant. Among them is a line which Aristotle (Aristot. Met. 4.5
, Eth. Eudem.
2.7) and Plutarch (Moral.
ii. p. 1102c.) quote by the name of Evenus, but which is found in one of the elegies of Theognis (vv. 467-474), whence it is supposed that that elegy should be ascribed to Evenus.
There are also two hexameters of Evenus. (Aristot. EN 7.11
None of the epigrams in the Anthology are expressly assigned to this Evenus; but it is not unlikely that the 12th is his. If the 8th and 9th, on the Cnidian Aphrodite of Praxiteles, and the 10th and 11th, on Myron's cows, are his, which seems not improbable, then his date would be fixed. Otherwise it is very difficult to determine whether he lived before or after the other Evenus.
As he was certainly less famous than the contemporary of Socrates, the statement of Eratosthenes that only the younger was celebrated, would imply that lie lived before him : and this view is maintained, in opposition to the general opinion of scholars, in the Zeitschrift für die Allerthumswissenschaft,
1840, p. 118.
Of the other poets of this name next to nothing is known beyond the titles, quoted above, in the Palatine Anthology. Jacobs conjectures that the Sicilian and the Ascalonite are the same, the name Σικελιώτου
being a corruption of Ἀσκαλωνίτου
, but he gives no reason for this conjecture.
The epigrams of one of these poets, we know not which, were in the collection of Philip, which contained chiefly the verses of poets nearly contemporary with Philip himself.
(Wagner, de Evenis Poetis elegiacis,
Vratisl. 1828; Schreiber, Disput. de Evenis Pariis,
Götting. 1839; Souchay, Sur les Poètes élégiaques,
in the Mém. de l'Acad. des Inscript.
vol. x. p. 598; Schneidewin, Delect. Poes. Graec. eleg.
vol. i. p. 133; Gaisford, Poet. Min. Graec.
vol. iii. p. 277; Boissonade, Graec. Poet.
p. 163; Jacobs, Anth. Graec.
vol, xiii. pp. 893, 894; Fabric. Bibl. Graec.
vol. i. p. 727.)