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Please note that Mommsen uses the AUC chronology (Ab Urbe Condita), i.e. from the founding of the City of Rome. You can use this reference table to have the B.C. dates


IV. The Revolution

From: The History of Rome, by Theodor Mommsen
Translated with the sanction of the author by William Purdie Dickson

The History of Old Rome

Chapter XII - Nationality, Religion, and Education


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Page 35

Greek Instruction

It was a singular circumstance that the same man, who in a political point of view definitively vanquished the Greek nation, Lucius Aemilius Paullus, was at the same time the first or one of the first who fully recognized the Greek civilization as-- what it has thenceforth continued to be beyond dispute--the civilization of the ancient world. He was himself indeed an old man before it was granted to him, with the Homeric poems in his mind, to stand before the Zeus of Phidias; but his heart was young enough to carry home the full sunshine of Greek beauty and the unconquerable longing after the golden apples of the Hesperides in his soul; poets and artists had found in the foreigner a more earnest and cordial devotee than was any of the wise men of the Greece of those days.

He made no epigram on Homer or Phidias, but he had his children introduced into the realms of intellect. Without neglecting their national education, so far as there was such, he made provision like the Greeks for the physical development of his boys, not indeed by gymnastic exercises which were according to Roman notions inadmissible, but by instruction in the chase, which was among the Greeks developed almost like an art; and he elevated their Greek instruction in such a way that the language was no longer merely learned and practised for the sake of speaking, but after the Greek fashion the whole subject-matter of general higher culture was associated with the language and developed out of it--embracing, first of all, the knowledge of Greek literature with the mythological and historical information necessary for understanding it, and then rhetoric and philosophy.

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