The modern historian of Greece and Rome often depends for his information on writings whose reliability is no greater, though often much less, than that of the histories, now lost in whole or part, which their authors followed. The quality of these histories can sometimes be detected from the internal evidence of the extant derivative accounts, even when we cannot name the historians with any certainty.
This book brings together both new and previously published essays on the Greek political history of the fifth century BC and historiography. It examines the relationship between philosophy and social/political conditions, and includes a new analysis of Aristotle's views on slavery and a discussion of the practicality of Plato's political theories.
Studies in Stoicism contains six unpublished and seven republished essays, the latter incorporating additions and changes which Brunt wished to be made. The papers have been integrated and arranged in chronological order by subject matter, with an accessible lecture to the Oxford Philological Society serving as Brunt's own introduction.
Discussions of the constitution of the Principate are usually focused on the powers of the emperor, and relatively little attention is given to the role of the senate; by exception much has been written on its jurisdiction, with which I shall not be concerned. Despite his theory of a dyarchy of emperor and senate, which I do not wish to revive, Mommsen, partly because he devoted separate volumes to each, did I not exhibit the extent to which Augustus and Tiberius (...) at least worked through the senate, and on occasions attributed to them legal powers to act by their own authority, when in reality they caused the senate to take action as the only proper means of effecting their wishes. More recently, F. de Martino in his admirable account of the Principate dedicates only one out of twenty-seven chapters to the composition, functions and procedure of the senate. For Syme it was simply an ‘organ that advertised or confirmed the decisions of the government’. This description does not bring out the truth that it was performing a role essential to Augustus' design. For though in effect he founded a monarchy, he commonly thought it expedient on necessary obtain for his measures senatorial approval. That this was the practice of Tiberius in his early years is clearly attested, and some suppose that he behaved in an entirely different manner from Augustus. This view seems to be mistaken, and the mistake is of some consequence. (shrink)
In a recent article on the Vettius affair Professor Lily Ross Taylor has tried to show that this letter should be dated to mid-July 59, and that it is therefore antecedent to 2. 20, 21, and 22. According to the hitherto accepted view the letters 2. According to the hitherto accepted view the letters 2. 18–25 are given by the manuscripts in the right chronological order, and since 21 is certainly later than Pompey's contio on 25 July , 23 and (...) 24 must fall later in the year; a terminus ante quem for the description of the Vettius affair in 24 is to be found in in Vat. 25, which shows that L. Lentulus, one of the persons Vettius implicated, was then a candidate for the consulship and that the letter is therefore antecedent to the consular elections, postponed by Bibulus' edict to 18 October . The purpose of this note is to defend this view and show that Professor Taylor's new dating is wrong. (shrink)
J. Kaerst, following a suggestion made by Ranke, conjectured that Diodorus' source for Alexander, whom he identified with Clitarchus, derived information from the mercenaries who served Darius. This conjecture has been developed into an elaborate theory by Sir William Tarn, a theory that has found some favour. He holds that the ‘mercenaries' source’, which I shall henceforth call M, was Diodorus' ‘principal guide [my italics] down to Issus’, and also ‘largely used’ by Curtius ; from certain texts in Curtius Tarn (...) infers that M went down to Darius' death, and he thinks that till that point both Diodorus and Curtius continued to draw upon him, as well as upon other authorities. (shrink)