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The correspondence of Marcus Cornelius Fronto with Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, Lucius Verus, Antoninus Pius, and various friends

The correspondence of Marcus Cornelius Fronto with Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, Lucius Verus, Antoninus Pius, and various friends PDF book (1920)

The correspondence of Marcus Cornelius Fronto with Marcus Aurelius



The literary remains of the rhetorician MARCUS CORNELIUS FRONTO (c. a.d. 100-176) first came to light in 181 5, when Cardinal Mai, then prefect of the Ambrosian Library in Milan, discovered that beneath an account of the Acts of the First Council of Chalcedon in 451 had originally been written a copy of the correspondence between Fronto and members of the imperial family, including no less than three who were to wear the purple.

The letters possess an extraordinary fascination as giving an authentic record of the relationship between the foremost teacher of his time and his illustrious pupil, Marcus Aurelius, his chief correspondent. Apart from small-talk (but even the trivialities of the great are replete with interest) the principal subject is Latin prose style.

Fronto practices to excess the cultivation of trendy mannerisms, but sees clearly enough the sterility of slavish imitation of classical models. Many problems arising from this unique work still await resolution: the original publication was deplorable, Hauler's life- long studies never led to an edition, and van den Hout's text is without a. commentary. Even after almost seventy years, the Loeb volumes remain the most helpful avenue to an appreciation of these remarkable documents.

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