This is a newly revised, critical text of the fragments attributed to the Roman knight and mimographer Decimus Laberius, a witty and crudely satirical contemporary of Cicero and Caesar. Laberius is perhaps the most celebrated comic playwright of the late Republic, and the fragments of plays attributed to him comprise the overwhelming majority of the extant evidence for what we conventionally call 'the literary Roman mime'. The volume also includes a survey of the characteristics and development of the Roman mime, both as a literary genre and as a type of popular theatrical entertainment, as well as a re-evaluation of the place of Laberius' work within its historical and literary context. This is the first English translation of all the fragments, and the first detailed English commentary on them from a linguistic, metrical, and (wherever possible) theatrical perspective.
Costas Panayotakis is Senior Lecturer in Classics at the University of Glasgow. His books include Theatrum Arbitri. Theatrical Elements in the Satyrica of Petronius (1995) and annotated book-length translations into modern Greek of Plautus' Rudens (2004) and Terence's Adelphoe (1996) and Eunuchus (2001). He has published widely on the Roman novel and Roman drama, and is the Review Editor of the journal Ancient Narrative.