Symphosius (580 words)

Context

Witty, verbally dexterous, and urbane, Symphosius is regarded as the father of the Literary Riddle. His sole surviving work, the Symphosii Scholastici Aenigmata [Riddles of the Scholar Symphosius], became the model for medieval riddle collections, especially in England where it provoked a literary vogue and was used as a school text. The Aenigmata, included in the Codex Salmasianus, comprises one hundred tristich hexameter riddles each solved by its own title. The collection is accompanied by a brief preface in which Symphosius claims, rather implausibly in view of the polished and schematized nature of the Aenigmata, to have improvised the riddles at the feast of the Saturnalia. These riddles, which t…

Citation: Sebo, Erin. "Symphosius". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 20 May 2009 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/speople.php?rec=true&UID=12550, accessed 20 October 2021.]

12550 Symphosius 1 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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