By John Henderson
John Henderson makes a speciality of 3 key Letters vacationing 3 Roman villas, and divulges their which means as designs for contrasting lives. Seneca brings the philosophical epistle to Latin literature, developing types for moralizing which function self-criticism, parody, and lively revision of delusion. The Stoic moralist wrests writing clear of Greek experts and texts, and recasts it into severe considering in Latin phrases, inside a Roman context. The Letters embrace serious considering on metaphor and translation, self-transformation and cultural culture.
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Extra resources for Morals and Villas in Seneca's Letters: Places to Dwell
122, with 174–82 on Epp. 56. Cf. 905, 937, 942, Nomento . . | tum . . nil nisi nomen habet|. Henderson (2000) 10–11, citing Henderson (1998) 199–200 and n. 121. 42 Morals and Villas in Seneca’s Letters founded. 5–7) . . ’6 Before Rome, minus Rome, Seneca has ‘whited out’ the world. He can live in a [Blank] of his own. Avoid: a void. 411–13): . . locus Ardea quondam dictus auis, et nunc magnum manet Ardea nomen, sed fortuna fuit . . Topical history of Ardea: hallowed by forefathers in bird legend, still today, as we speak, lives on Ardea, epic name – but the good days are done and gone .
The whole of a lifetime has subdivisions; it has a wrap of rings, larger ones round smaller: there’s one that embraces, girdles, them all (this one relates to day one through the last day on earth). There’s a second that closes out on the years of youth; there’s one whose perimeter laces in the whole of childhood. Next there’s the year as such, boundarying inside itself all the time units which multiply up to make a life. The month is edged by a narrower circumference. The day owns the tightest orbit, but even a day travels from its in to its out, from sun-up to sundown.
Twelve letters ﬁll a book once more (Book 4), but this ceiling is never exceeded. The format stays highly stable for a good while, but the proportions alter, until Book 10 is composed of just three letters. 1 Naturally enough, these variations go hand-in-glove with subject matter and cultural purchase, across the spectrum between intense technical or analytical set-piece, and expert engagement with the staple business of Roman correspondence retuned to dramatize protreptic to Philosophy: Books 1–6: Books 7–10: Books 11–13: Books 14–20: × 12; 9; 8; 12; 11; 10 (@ steady average of c.