Roman Myth and Mythography

Roman Myth and Mythography, Jan Bremmer, Nicholas Horsfall
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Takacs, S.

North American Research Group in Ancient Myth and Mythography

I am grateful to R. Not a member? Oxford Bibliographies Online is available by subscription and perpetual access to institutions. Aeneas' connexions with Samothrace are probably of second century date and of aetiological origin. Aryoud and P. Patterson ; While performing a sacrifice for Poseidon by the sea he invited many people including Jason.

Weinstock, S. Religion in the Empire Ando, C. Gradel, I.

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Paganism in the Roman Empire New Haven Rives, J. Eastern Cults Beck, R. Burkert, W. Ancient Mystery Cults Cambridge, Mass. Cumont, F.

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MacMullen, R. Frankfurter, D. Religion in Roman Egypt: Assimilation and Resistance.

Greek Mythography in the Roman World

Princeton, E. Early Christianity Brown, P.

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The Satyrs & Fauns of Greek & Roman Mythology - (Greek Mythology Explained)

NL EN. More from Stephen M Trzaskoma R. Scott Smith. Book Tower - external depot Open print view. Trzaskoma and R. Smith, R. Scott Publisher: Leuven : Peeters, Description: Xxiv, p. The study of Roman religion and myth is complicated by the early influence of Greek religion on the Italian peninsula during Rome's protohistory , and by the later artistic imitation of Greek literary models by Roman authors.

Writing myth : mythography in the ancient world

1. Myth and Mythography at Rome (NMH) 1. 2. The Aeneas Legend from Homer to Virgil (NMH) 3. Romulus, Remus and the Foundation of Rome (JNB) Roman Myth and Mythography. Bremmer, J.N.; Horsfall, N. IMPORTANT NOTE: You are advised to consult the publisher's version (publisher's PDF) if you wish.

In matters of theology, the Romans were curiously eager to identify their own gods with those of the Greeks interpretatio graeca , and to reinterpret stories about Greek deities under the names of their Roman counterparts. While Roman mythology may lack a body of divine narratives as extensive as that found in Greek literature, [3] Romulus and Remus suckling the she-wolf is as famous as any image from Greek mythology except for the Trojan Horse.

In particular, the versions of Greek myths in Ovid 's Metamorphoses , written during the reign of Augustus , came to be regarded as canonical. Because ritual played the central role in Roman religion that myth did for the Greeks, it is sometimes doubted that the Romans had much of a native mythology. This perception is a product of Romanticism and the classical scholarship of the 19th century, which valued Greek civilization as more "authentically creative. These narratives focus on human actors, with only occasional intervention from deities but a pervasive sense of divinely ordered destiny.

In Rome's earliest period, history and myth have a mutual and complementary relationship.

Project MUSE - Myth and Mythography

Wiseman notes:. The Roman stories still matter , as they mattered to Dante in and Shakespeare in and the founding fathers of the United States in What does it take to be a free citizen? Can a superpower still be a republic? How does well-meaning authority turn into murderous tyranny?


Major sources for Roman myth include the Aeneid of Vergil and the first few books of Livy 's history as well as Dionysius' s Roman Antiquities. Other important sources are the Fasti of Ovid , a six-book poem structured by the Roman religious calendar , and the fourth book of elegies by Propertius. Scenes from Roman myth also appear in Roman wall painting , coins , and sculpture , particularly reliefs. The Aeneid and Livy's early history are the best extant sources for Rome's founding myths.

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Material from Greek heroic legend was grafted onto this native stock at an early date. The Trojan prince Aeneas was cast as husband of Lavinia , daughter of King Latinus , patronymical ancestor of the Latini , and therefore through a convoluted revisionist genealogy as forebear of Romulus and Remus. By extension, the Trojans were adopted as the mythical ancestors of the Roman people. The characteristic myths of Rome are often political or moral, that is, they deal with the development of Roman government in accordance with divine law, as expressed by Roman religion , and with demonstrations of the individual's adherence to moral expectations mos maiorum or failures to do so.

Narratives of divine activity played a more important role in the system of Greek religious belief than among the Romans, for whom ritual and cult were primary. Although Roman religion did not have a basis in scriptures and exegesis , priestly literature was one of the earliest written forms of Latin prose. Some aspects of archaic Roman religion survived in the lost theological works of the 1st-century BC scholar Varro , known through other classical and Christian authors. The earliest pantheon included Janus, Vesta , and a leading so-called Archaic Triad of Jupiter, Mars, and Quirinus, whose flamens were of the highest order.

According to tradition, Numa Pompilius , the Sabine second king of Rome , founded Roman religion; Numa was believed to have had as his consort and adviser a Roman goddess or nymph of fountains and of prophecy, Egeria.