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Roman Historiography: An Introduction to Its Basic Aspects and Development

Roman Historiography: An Introduction to Its Basic Aspects and Development

Hardback Blackwell Introductions to the Classical World

By (author) Andreas Mehl, Translated by Hans-Friedrich Mueller

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  • Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell (an imprint of John Wiley & Sons Ltd)
  • Format: Hardback | 300 pages
  • Dimensions: 160mm x 230mm x 26mm | 581g
  • Publication date: 17 May 2011
  • Publication City/Country: Chicester
  • ISBN 10: 1405121831
  • ISBN 13: 9781405121835
  • Edition statement: New.
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations
  • Sales rank: 1,039,397

Product description

Roman Historiography: An Introduction to its Basic Aspects and Development presents a comprehensive introduction to the development of Roman historical writings in both Greek and Latin, from the early annalists to Orosius and Procopius of Byzantium. Provides an accessible survey of every historical writer of significance in the Roman world Traces the growth of Christian historiography under the influence of its pagan adversaries Offers valuable insight into current scholarly trends on Roman historiography Includes a user-friendly bibliography, catalog of authors and editions, and index Selected by Choice as a 2013 Outstanding Academic Title

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Author information

Andreas Mehl is Professor of Ancient History at the Martin Luther University at Halle and Wittenberg. He is the author of Seleukos Nikator und sein Reich (1986); Tacitus uber Kaiser Claudius: Die Ereignisse Am Hof (1974); and Romische Geschichtsschreibung: Grundlagen und Entwicklungen: eine Einfuhrung (Stuttgart, 2001). Hans-Friedrich Mueller is the William D. Williams Professor of Classics at Union College in Schenectady, New York. He is the author of Roman Religion in Valerius Maximus (2002) and the editor of an abridgment of Edward Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (2003).

Review quote

"In all, Mehl's Roman Historiography amounts to a helpful handbook for students of the ancient world. It seems an especially good means for readers to gain a quick appraisal of the German approach to its subject. Although some may criticize Mehl's assessments and emphases on occasion, the book presents a concise and readable introduction to work of Roman historians, biographers, chronographers, antiquarians, and kindred authors." ( New England Classical Journal , 1 May 2013) Named CHOICE Outstanding Title for 2012 "Appropriate for advanced undergraduate students, this work provides a foundation for further study of classical historical writing. (Annotation (c)2011 Book News Inc. Portland, OR)." (Book News, 1 August 2011)

Back cover copy

"Roman Historiography: An Introduction to its Basic Aspects and Development" presents a comprehensive introduction to the development of Roman historical writings in the ancient world. Andreas Mehl traces the arc of ancient historical writing about Rome from its origins with the authors of clan history and fragmentary annalists to the writings of Byzantine scholar Procopius, the last major historian of the ancient world. Rooting his survey in the context of its Greek predecessors, and within the broader framework of Roman literature and society, Mehl discusses every historical writer of significance in the ancient Roman era and provides much more than simple biographical detail. Also considered are essential themes such as genre, teleology, the idea of Rome, and exemplary moral conduct. By paying scrupulous attention to political context and religious developments throughout the ancient world, Mehl reveals the evolution and interpenetration of both pagan and Christian historiography. This title offers a wealth of illuminating insights into the origins and development of the crucial historical writings of the living witnesses to the greatest empire the world has ever known.

Table of contents

Translator's Preface ix Introduction: The Importance of Ancient Historiography and the Purpose of this Book 1 Chapter 1: Ancient Literature and Roman Historiography 9 1.1 Roman Literature and its Relation to Greek Literature 9 1.2 Roman Historiography and the City of Rome 12 1.3 The Claims of Artistry and Truth in Ancient, especially Roman, Historiography 17 Chapter 2: The Formation and Establishment of Tradition in the Ruling Class of the Early and Middle Roman Republic 33 2.1 Family Histories and Clan Traditions 34 2.2 The Annales Maximi and the Almanacs of Publius Mucius Scaevola 37 Chapter 3: Early Roman Historiography: Self-Justifi cation and Memory in earlier Annalistic Writing 41 3.1 Early Annalistic Writing (I) 43 3.2 Early Annalistic Writing (II) 49 3.3 Early Historical Epic in Rome (Naevius and Ennius) 60 Chapter 4: The Historiography of Rome between the Fronts of the Civil Wars 63 4.1 Later Annalistic Writing: Optimates vs. Populares and Traditional Annalistic Writing vs. Contemporary History 66 4.2 Autobiographies, Memoirs, Hypomnemata, Commentarii, and their Infl uence on the Historiography of Current Events 69 4.3 The History of Current Events Made to Order and Contemporary Concepts of Historiography (Cicero) 77 4.4 Biography (Cornelius Nepos) 81 4.5 The Experience of the Collapsing and Ruined Republic 84 4.6 Antiquarian Writings 96 Chapter 5: Augustan Rome, Roman Empire, and other Peoples and Kingdoms 98 5.1 Titus Livius: Roman History from Romulus to Augustus in its Entirety 100 5.2 World History, the History of the World beyond Rome, and Roman History by Non-Romans and New Romans 110 Chapter 6: Imperial History and the History of Emperors -- Imperial History as the History of Emperors 121 6.1 Empire and "Republic": Senatorial Historiography 127 6.2 Rome and Foreign Peoples 156 6.3 Imperial History as Imperial Biography 165 6.4 Personal History and Biography in the High Empire beyond Roman Emperors 178 6.5 History in "Pocket-Size" 186 6.6 Exempla-Literature and Historical Understanding 197 Chapter 7: Roman History and Universal History between Classical Religion ("Paganism") and Christianity 199 7.1 Zosimus and his Predecessors: Classically Religious Historiography and Historical Interpretation in a Christian Age 203 7.2 Ammianus Marcellinus: Indifferent to Religion? 207 7.3 Christian Historiography 216 Chapter 8: Some Basic Principles of Ancient Historical Thought 243 Chronological Table 252 Notes 255 Select Bibliography 264 1. General Bibliography 264 1.1 Editions, Translations, and Commentaries for the Historiographical and Biographical Works Treated in this Book 264 1.2 Editions of Historiographical Works and Historical Epics in Greek and Latin that Survive only in Fragments 270 1.3 Histories of Greek and Latin Literature, especially Historiography: Recent Surveys and Collections 271 1.4 Ancient Historiography, especially Roman: its Basic Literary, Social, and Intellectual Contexts 272 2. The Formation and Establishment of Tradition in the Ruling Class of the Early and Middle Roman Republic 275 3. Early Roman Historiography: Self-Justifi cation and Memory in Early Annalistic Writing 276 4. The Historiography of Rome between the Fronts of the Civil Wars 277 5. Augustan Rome, Roman Empire, and other Peoples and Kingdoms 279 6. Imperial History and the History of Emperors -- Imperial History as the History of Emperors 280 7. Roman History and Universal History between Classical Religion ("Paganism") and Christianity 284 Index 287