Is "A True History" by Lucian an example of Verse Satire or Menippean Satire?

1 Answer

thanatassa's profile pic

thanatassa | College Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

Verse satire is a satire written in verse or poetic form. Lucian`s writings, in the original Greek, are exclusively in prose, and therefore are not verse satire.

The question of Menippean satire is somewhat more complex as the genre is less well defined. On a purely formal level, Menippean satire is usually written in the form of prosimetrum (mixed prose and verse), and because Lucian`s work is purely in prose form, it would be disqualified. Although Lucian does mix serious philosophical reflection with humour, the story lacks the fragmented and quasi-picaresque, fantastical nature usually associated with the genre.

Thus Lucian`s True Story is neither verse nor Menippean satire.