The term antiquity (or classical antiquity; the
usual adjective is not "antique" but "ancient") is applied to
the period in which ancient Greece and Rome achieved what are
considered their greatest literary works, beginning with Homer
(around the eighth century B.C.E.). The
end of antiquity is more problematic. The period between the
fall of Rome (in the fourth or fifth century C.E.) and the later
Middle Ages say, 450 to 700-ish --
is sometimes called "late antiquity." Sometimes the adjective classical is used synonymously with
"ancient"; sometimes it's more specific.
The traditional canon of the Greek
authors of antiquity includes the epic
poet Homer, the tragedians Aeschylus,
Sophocles, Euripides, and the philosophers Plato and Aristotle
all but Homer lived during what is considered the greatest
age of Greek culture, the fifth and fourth centuries B.C.E.
Latin poets of the Augustan period
include Virgil, the most important epic
poet; Horace, most famous for his odes;
From the Guide to Literary Terms by Jack Lynch.
Please send comments to Jack Lynch.
Note: This guide is still in the early stages of development.
Three question marks mean I have to write more on the subject. Bear with me.