Epigram: Epitaph of Skythinos, a Village School Teacher


My name is Skythinos, not the author

of Herakleitos Commentaries

but just one epigram. I wrote it while

at school and Plato saw it and kicked me out.

It was in praise of Beauty, origin

of mind. It sealed my fate. I tutored children

in this village and died a pauper. Do not pity

me; flowers grow here all year round.



Author: Tom D'Evelyn

Tom D'Evelyn is a private editor and writing tutor in Cranston RI and, thanks to the web, across the US and in the UK. He can be reached at tom.develyn@comcast.net. D'Evelyn has a PhD in Comparative Literature from UC Berkeley. Before retiring he held positions at The Christian Science Monitor, Harvard University Press, Boston University and Brown University. He ran a literary agency for ten years, publishing books by Leonard Nathan and Arthur Quinn, among others. Before moving to Portland OR he was managing editor at Single Island Press, Portsmouth NH. He blogs at http://tdevelyn.com and other sites.

3 thoughts on “Epigram: Epitaph of Skythinos, a Village School Teacher”

    1. It’s my imitation of a Greek epigram. I studied the epigram for several years in grad school with every intention of devoting my thesis to the genre. Didn’t happen; long story.


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