Francesco Busti is a researcher at the Centre for the Arts in Society.
Francesco Busti studied Ancient History and Classical Philology at the Scuola Normale Superiore and at the University of Pisa. He earned a PhD in Classics at the Scuola Normale Superiore under the supervision of Prof. Gianpiero Rosati. Since 2022 he has been working as a postdoctoral researcher at Leiden University Centre for the Arts in Society, where he is part of Anchoring Innovation: his postdoc project, supervised by Prof. dr. Antje Wessels, focuses on the role of one of the so-called poetae noui, Gaius Helvius Cinna, in Rome’s assimilation of eastern material and cultural imports.
Francesco is part of the editorial staff of the peer-reviewed journal GIF (Giornale Italiano di Filologia).
The Translation of Zmyrna: Anchoring Roman Poetry in the East
Famous as the third gift the Magi «from the East» offered to the Christ Child, myrrh (Greek z-/smýrna) had a strong reputation in ancient Greece and Rome as an eastern rarity. The history of its importation to the western world passes through politics and literature, providing an exciting insight into Rome’s development as a global superpower aspiring to the East: a pivotal figure in this political/cultural appropriation and assimilation was Gaius Helvius Cinna, a politician and a poet. This project studies this specific example of how Roman culture anchored itself in the tradition of others; it will lead to the completion of a monograph on the subject.
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