c.522 - c.443 BC
Pindar was born in Boetia, central Greece, and is known as the greatest of the Greek choral lyricists. He lived in an era when poets were considered to have an almost priestly function as interpreters to men of their place in the world.
His masterpieces are the 'epinicia', of which 44 are known, celebrating victories achieved in the Pythian, Olympic, and Isthmian games.
His poetry includes lyrics of unsurpassed splendour but the choral lyric itself had little future by his time because tragedy absorbed what was most vital in the tradition, and Pindar had no worthy successors.
Every night after the poet's death, the priest of Apollo at Delphi used to intone as he closed the
temple doors: "Let Pindar the poet go unto the supper of the gods".