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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



9460
Pliny The Younger, Letters, 1.15.2


nanMoreover, he writes verses that Catullus or Calvus might have composed. They are positively brimming over with grace, sweetness, irony and love. He occasionally, and of set design, interpolates among these smooth and easy-flowing verses others cast in a more rugged mould, and here again he is like Catullus and Calvus. A little while ago he read me some letters which he declared had been written by his wife. I thought, on hearing them, that they were either Plautus or Terence in prose, and whether they were composed, as he said, by his wife or by himself, as he denies, his credit is the same. It belongs to him either as the actual author of the letters or as the teacher who has made such a polished and learned lady of his wife — whom he married when she was a girl. So I pass the whole day in the company of Saturninus. I read him before I set pen to paper; I read him again after finishing my writing, and again when I am at leisure. He is always the same but never seems the same. Let me urge and beg of you to do likewise, for the fact that the author is still alive ought not to be of any detriment to his works. If he had been a contemporary of those on whom we have never set eyes, we should not only be seeking to procure copies of his books but also asking for busts of him. Why then, as he is still amongst us, should his credit and popularity dwindle, as though we were tired of him? Surely it is discreditable and scandalous that we should not give a man the due he richly deserves, simply because we can see him with our own eyes, speak to him, hear him, embrace him, and not only praise but love him. Farewell.


Intertexts (texts cited often on the same page as the searched text):

20 results
1. Cicero, On Duties, 1.144 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

1.144. Talis est igitur ordo actionum adhibendus, ut, quem ad modum in oratione constanti, sic in vita omnia sint apta inter se et convenientia; turpe enimn valdeque vitiosum in re severa convivio digna aut delicatum aliquem inferre sermonem. Bene Pericles, cum haberet collegam in praetura Sophoclem poëtam iique de communi officio convenissent et casu formosus puer praeteriret dixissetque Sophocles: O puerum pulchrum, Pericle! At enim praetorem, Sophocle, decet non solum manus, sed etiam oculos abstinentes habere. Atqui hoc idem Sophocles si in athletarum probatione dixisset, iusta reprehensione caruisset. Tanta vis est et loci et temporis. Ut, si qui, cum causam sit acturus, in itinere aut in ambulatione secum ipse meditetur, aut si quid aliud attentius cogitet, non reprehendatur, at hoc idem si in convivio faciat, inhumanus videatur inscitia temporis. 1.144.  Such orderliness of conduct is, therefore, to be observed, that everything in the conduct of our life shall balance and harmonize, as in a finished speech. For it is unbecoming and highly censurable, when upon a serious theme, to introduce such jests as are proper at a dinner, or any sort of loose talk. When Pericles was associated with the poet Sophocles as his colleague in command and they had met to confer about official business that concerned them both, a handsome boy chanced to pass and Sophocles said: "Look, Pericles; what a pretty boy!" How pertinent was Pericles's reply: "Hush, Sophocles, a general should keep not only his hands but his eyes under control." And yet, if Sophocles had made this same remark at a trial of athletes, he would have incurred no just reprimand. So great is the significance of both place and circumstance. For example, if anyone, while on a journey or on a walk, should rehearse to himself a case which he is preparing to conduct in court, or if he should under similar circumstances apply his closest thought to some other subject, he would not be open to censure: but if he should do that same thing at a dinner, he would be thought ill-bred, because he ignored the proprieties of the occasion.
2. Cicero, Letters, 9.1.3, 13.52 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

3. Cicero, Letters, 9.1.3, 13.52 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

4. Cicero, Letters, 9.1.3, 13.52 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

5. Cicero, Letters, 9.1.3, 13.52 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

6. Ovid, Tristia, 4.10.43 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

7. Vergil, Aeneis, 8.710 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

8.710. knew that his mother in the skies redeemed
8. Juvenal, Satires, 3.9 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

9. Martial, Epigrams, 3.50, 4.8.7-4.8.12, 5.16.9, 5.78.25, 10.20, 11.52 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

10. Martial, Epigrams, 3.50, 4.8.7-4.8.12, 5.16.9, 5.78.25, 10.20, 11.52 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

11. New Testament, Acts, 8.3 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

8.3. But Saul ravaged the assembly, entering into every house, and dragged both men and women off to prison.
12. Persius, Satires, 1.32-1.43 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

13. Persius, Saturae, 1.32-1.43 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

14. Petronius Arbiter, Satyricon, 55 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

15. Petronius Arbiter, Satyricon, 55 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

16. Suetonius, Augustus, 76-77, 74 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

17. Tacitus, Annals, 14.14-14.18, 14.20 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

14.14.  It was an old desire of his to drive a chariot and team of four, and an equally repulsive ambition to sing to the lyre in the stage manner. "Racing with horses," he used to observe, "was a royal accomplishment, and had been practised by the commanders of antiquity: the sport had been celebrated in the praises of poets and devoted to the worship of Heaven. As to song, it was sacred to Apollo; and it was in the garb appropriate to it that, both in Greek cities and in Roman temples, that great and prescient deity was seen standing." He could no longer be checked, when Seneca and Burrus decided to concede one of his points rather than allow him to carry both; and an enclosure was made in the Vatican valley, where he could manoeuvre his horses without the spectacle being public. Before long, the Roman people received an invitation in form, and began to hymn his praises, as is the way of the crowd, hungry for amusements, and delighted if the sovereign draws in the same direction. However, the publication of his shame brought with it, not the satiety expected, but a stimulus; and, in the belief that he was attenuating his disgrace by polluting others, he brought on the stage those scions of the great houses whom poverty had rendered venal. They have passed away, and I regard it as a debt due to their ancestors not to record them by name. For the disgrace, in part, is his who gave money for the reward of infamy and not for its prevention. Even well-known Roman knights he induced to promise their services in the arena by what might be called enormous bounties, were it not that gratuities from him who is able to command carry with them the compelling quality of necessity. 14.15.  Reluctant, however, as yet to expose his dishonour on a public stage, he instituted the so‑called Juvenile Games, for which a crowd of volunteers enrolled themselves. Neither rank, nor age, nor an official career debarred a man from practising the art of a Greek or a Latin mummer, down to attitudes and melodies never meant for the male sex. Even women of distinction studied indecent parts; and in the grove with which Augustus fringed his Naval Lagoon, little trysting-places and drinking-dens sprang up, and every incentive to voluptuousness was exposed for sale. Distributions of coin, too, were made, for the respectable man to expend under compulsion and the prodigal from vainglory. Hence debauchery and scandal throve; nor to our morals, corrupted long before, has anything contributed more of uncleanness than that herd of reprobates. Even in the decent walks of life, purity is hard to keep: far less could chastity or modesty or any vestige of integrity survive in that competition of the vices. — Last of all to tread the stage was the sovereign himself, scrupulously testing his lyre and striking a few preliminary notes to the trainers at his side. A cohort of the guards had been added to the audience — centurions and tribunes; Burrus, also, with his sigh and his word of praise. Now, too, for the first time was enrolled the company of Roman knights known as the Augustiani; conspicuously youthful and robust; wanton in some cases by nature; in others, through dreams of power. Days and nights they thundered applause, bestowed the epithets reserved for deity upon the imperial form and voice, and lived in a repute and honour, which might have been earned by virtue. 14.16.  And yet, lest it should be only the histrionic skill of the emperor which won publicity, he affected also a zeal for poetry and gathered a group of associates with some faculty for versification but not such as to have yet attracted remark. These, after dining, sat with him, devising a connection for the lines they had brought from home or invented on the spot, and eking out the phrases suggested, for better or worse, by their master; the method being obvious even from the general cast of the poems, which run without energy or inspiration and lack unity of style. Even to the teachers of philosophy he accorded a little time — but after dinner, and in order to amuse himself by the wrangling which attended the exposition of their conflicting dogmas. Nor was there any dearth of gloomy-browed and sad-eyed sages eager to figure among the diversions of majesty. 14.17.  About the same date, a trivial incident led to a serious affray between the inhabitants of the colonies of Nuceria and Pompeii, at a gladiatorial show presented by Livineius Regulus, whose removal from the senate has been noticed. During an exchange of raillery, typical of the petulance of country towns, they resorted to abuse, then to stones, and finally to steel; the superiority lying with the populace of Pompeii, where the show was being exhibited. As a result, many of the Nucerians were carried maimed and wounded to the capital, while a very large number mourned the deaths of children or of parents. The trial of the affair was delegated by the emperor to the senate; by the senate to the consuls. On the case being again laid before the members, the Pompeians as a community were debarred from holding any similar assembly for ten years, and the associations which they had formed illegally were dissolved. Livineius and the other fomenters of the outbreak were punished with exile. 14.18.  Pedius Blaesus also was removed from the senate: he was charged by the Cyrenaeans with profaning the treasury of Aesculapius and falsifying the military levy by venality and favouritism. An indictment was brought, again by Cyrene, against Acilius Strabo, who had held praetorian office and been sent by Claudius to adjudicate on the estates, once the patrimony of King Apion, which he had bequeathed along with his kingdom to the Roman nation. They had been annexed by the neighbouring proprietors, who relied on their long-licensed usurpation as a legal and fair title. Hence, when the adjudication went against them, there was an outbreak of ill-will against the adjudicator; and the senate could only answer that it was ignorant of Claudius' instructions and the emperor would have to be consulted. Nero, while upholding Strabo's verdict, wrote that none the less he supported the provincials and made over to them the property occupied. 14.20.  In the consulate of Nero — his fourth term — and of Cornelius Cossus, a quinquennial competition on the stage, in the style of a Greek contest, was introduced at Rome. Like almost all innovations it was variously canvassed. Some insisted that "even Pompey had been censured by his elders for establishing the theatre in a permanent home. Before, the games had usually been exhibited with the help of improvised tiers of benches and a stage thrown up for the occasion; or, to go further into the past, the people stood to watch: seats in the theatre, it was feared, might tempt them to pass whole days in indolence. By all means let the spectacles be retained in their old form, whenever the praetor presided, and so long as no citizen lay under any obligation to compete. But the national morality, which had gradually fallen into oblivion, was being overthrown from the foundations by this imported licentiousness; the aim of which was that every production of every land, capable of either undergoing or engendering corruption, should be on view in the capital, and that our youth, under the influence of foreign tastes, should degenerate into votaries of the gymnasia, of indolence, and of dishonourable amours, — and this at the instigation of the emperor and senate, who, not content with conferring immunity upon vice, were applying compulsion, in order that Roman nobles should pollute themselves on the stage under pretext of delivering an oration or a poem. What remained but to strip to the skin as well, put on the gloves, and practise that mode of conflict instead of the profession of arms? Would justice be promoted, would the equestrian decuries better fulfil their great judicial functions, if they had lent an expert ear to emasculated music and dulcet voices? Even night had been re­quisitioned for scandal, so that virtue should not be left with a breathing-space, but that amid a promiscuous crowd every vilest profligate might venture in the dark the act for which he had lusted in the light.
18. Gellius, Attic Nights, 19.9 (2nd cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

19. Pliny The Younger, Letters, 3.1.9, 9.17.3 (2nd cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

20. Pliny The Younger, Letters, 1.15.2, 3.1.9, 9.17.3 (2nd cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
baias Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
banquets Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
choruses, roman era Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199
clarus, septicius Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 205
cold Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
comic actors/singers (comōdoi), roman era Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199, 213
cornelius nepos Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 205
dance/dancers, spanish Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199
deliciae Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
epicurus, in plutarch Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199
frugality Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
gaios ailios themison Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
generosity Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
gluttony Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
greediness Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
idleness Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
juvenal, on spanish dancers Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199
lucian of samosata, on dancing Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199, 205
lyres/lyrody/citharas/citharists, in plutarch Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199, 205
lyres/lyrody/citharas/citharists, mesomedes Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 205
lyres/lyrody/citharas/citharists, roman age Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199
marius, gaius Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
menander, in plutarchs on compliance Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199
mesomedes (citharode) Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 205, 213
mime, plays Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
mimodes Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
notation, music Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199, 205, 213
oysters Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
petronius, satyricon Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
pleasure Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
pliny, and septicius clarus Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 205
pliny, on entertainment Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199, 213
plutarch, on compliance, citharodes/comic actors Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199, 205
plutarch, on entertainment Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
plutarch, sympotic questions (table talk) Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 205
reader Alikin, The Earliest History of the Christian Gathering (2009) 148
reading at symposia' Alikin, The Earliest History of the Christian Gathering (2009) 148
roman era, elite self-image-making Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 205
roman era, outside entertainment Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199, 205
roman era, tragic/comic solo song Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
spanish dancers Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199
stage music/theater songs, roman Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
sulla (cornelius sulla felix) Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
theater, roman Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
theon Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199
trimalchio (in petronius satyricon) Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 213
villae Romana Berno, Roman Luxuria: A Literary and Cultural History (2023) 202
zosimus (slave of pliny) Cosgrove, Music at Social Meals in Greek and Roman Antiquity: From the Archaic Period to the Age of Augustine (2022) 199