REMORA

REMORA ‐‐‐‐‐‐ Doctrine and Discipline of Divorce ( CPW 2: 264) Eikonoklastes ( CPW 3: 501) ‐‐‐‐‐‐ A classical creature whose reputed powers were viewed with skepticism in the seventeenth century, the little remora nonetheless darts through polemical writing of the period as a metaphor for the hindering of reform. Pliny recounts Gaius Caesar's fury that a fish the size of a large slug stopped forty oarsmen from propelling his ship forward. They say, Pliny adds, that a remora was responsible for Antony's defeat at Actium ( NH 8: 466). Aelian attributes an “evil purpose” to the remora's seizing ships and holding them fast (1: 114); Lucan includes a remora in Erictho's foul, potent brew (352). Let sea, wind, tide, storm do their worst, declares Pliny: “this little fish commaundeth their furie, restraineth their puissance, and maugre all their force as great as it is, compelleth ships to stand still” (Holland 2.425; NH 8: 464). 25 His account of the remora expands the implications of its name: (Latin) remora means “delayer,” (Greek) echeneis , “ship‐holder” (Lewis and Short, s.v. remora; Thompson 67). 26 It is about six inches long, Pliny says, and looks like “a snaile of the greatest http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Milton Quarterly Wiley

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Publisher
Wiley
Copyright
© 2008 The Author. Journal compilation © 2008 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
ISSN
0026-4326
eISSN
1094-348X
DOI
10.1111/j.1094-348X.2008.00205_4.x
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

‐‐‐‐‐‐ Doctrine and Discipline of Divorce ( CPW 2: 264) Eikonoklastes ( CPW 3: 501) ‐‐‐‐‐‐ A classical creature whose reputed powers were viewed with skepticism in the seventeenth century, the little remora nonetheless darts through polemical writing of the period as a metaphor for the hindering of reform. Pliny recounts Gaius Caesar's fury that a fish the size of a large slug stopped forty oarsmen from propelling his ship forward. They say, Pliny adds, that a remora was responsible for Antony's defeat at Actium ( NH 8: 466). Aelian attributes an “evil purpose” to the remora's seizing ships and holding them fast (1: 114); Lucan includes a remora in Erictho's foul, potent brew (352). Let sea, wind, tide, storm do their worst, declares Pliny: “this little fish commaundeth their furie, restraineth their puissance, and maugre all their force as great as it is, compelleth ships to stand still” (Holland 2.425; NH 8: 464). 25 His account of the remora expands the implications of its name: (Latin) remora means “delayer,” (Greek) echeneis , “ship‐holder” (Lewis and Short, s.v. remora; Thompson 67). 26 It is about six inches long, Pliny says, and looks like “a snaile of the greatest

Journal

Milton QuarterlyWiley

Published: Dec 1, 2008

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