Pindar (522 7-443 B.C.), the greatest lyric poet of Greece, was born at Cynoscephala3 near Thebes. He was descended from a musical family, and studied flute-playing under Lasus of Hermione at Athens. In his youth be derived much benefit from the advice of his townswoman, the poetess Corinna, who several times defeated him in public contests. He resided at the courts of Hiero of Syracuse and Thero of Acragas. yet so far was he from sacrificing his independence that he introduced friendly advice into the verses composed for these princes. His affectionate regard for the city of Athens was rewarded with the proxenia, an office the duties of which consisted in entertaining and assisting the Athenians who visited Thebes.