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 (thē-ŏk′rĭ-təs) fl. third century bc.
Greek poet who composed the earliest known pastoral poems.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(Biography) ?310–?250 bc, Greek poet, born in Syracuse. He wrote the first pastoral poems in Greek literature and was closely imitated by Virgil
Theˈocritan, Theocritean adj, n
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(θiˈɒk rɪ təs)

fl. c270 B.C., Greek poet.
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References in classic literature ?
after all, it is not imagined Greece, dreamy, antique Sicily, but the present world about us, though mistakable for a moment, delightfully, for the land, the age, of Sappho, of Theocritus:--
with the perfectly sincere poems of the Greek Theocritus, who gives genuine expression to the life of actual Sicilian shepherds.
Virgilius had a strong twang of Theocritus. Martial put me much in mind of Archilochus - and Titus Livius was positively Polybius and none other."
His mental palate, indeed, was rather pagan, and found a savouriness in a quotation from Sophocles or Theocritus that was quite absent from any text in Isaiah or Amos.
According to Theocritus' version of the story, Daphnis offended Eros and Aphrodite and, in return, was smitten with unrequited love; he died, although Aphrodite, moved by compassion, tried unsuccessfully to save him.
The nature of the love and death of Daphnis in the portion of Theocritus' First Idyll, which the herdsman Thyrsis sings, has long been controversial.
Anna Robertson Brown, ~The Lotus Symbolism in Homer, Theocritus, Moschus, Tennyson, and Browning' (ii.625-34), pages 628-30 are on ~The Lotus-Eaters' and ~Choric Song'.
He was a learned, witty man who wrote excellent books and papers on matters political and literary, translated Theocritus and Goethe, and was among the first Americans to give attention to Oriental studies.
The name itself derives many centuries later, since the ancients apparently did not know what to call this prose that was not history, this adventure that was not epic, this love story that was neither tragedy nor comedy, this pastoral that was not bound by the verse forms of Theocritus and Vergil.
Though based on the idyls of Theocritus, the Bucolics are sophisticated tours de force and subtle allegories of contemporary events and persons.
The first movement (marked fast) sets a passage from Williams's dewy rendering of Theocritus: "Begin, my friend/ for you cannot,/ you may be sure,/ take your song,/ which drives all things out of mind,/ with you to the other world.' The second (moderate) sets the question "Well, shall we/think or listen?'--an apt question for the minimalists' audience --from Williams's "The Orchestra.' The third movement is itself a sandwich, beginning with a setting (slow) of another passage from "The Orchestra':