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jstor.org..Trustees of Boston University is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Arion.http://www.jstor.orgThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions THE UNIQUENESSLITERATURE*LATINOFBrooks OtisATTEMPTINGZkhudothi-kingbay.comYONETO DISCUSSthe uniquenessof Latin literliterature, and especiallyin one sense,ature, cannot avoid an initial paradox. Nothing,acould be more familiar; it has for centuries occupiedlarge,in the curricula of schools andif not inordinatelylarge, placein the Westernworld. For long all educated mencollegesorwereto know at least a little about CaesarsupposedorButconcealedthisCicero, Horacevery familiarityVirgil.aas to just whatand uncertaintygreat deal of ignoranceLatin literature really was. Everybodyknew that the Greeksaour idea of all theproducedstartlingly original literature:orgreat literary genresforms?epic,tragedy, comedy, lyric,from their Greek origihistory, oratory?comesphdosophy,nators. But the Romansthese Greek models:only followeda very fundamentalinwere,sense,imitators, copyists oftheyGreek predecessors. Whatthen is uniquely Roman or Latinin Latinliterature? Th; e fact that the language is Latin andnot Greek? This does not take us very far unless we can alsosee that the differentor reveals a differentlanguage concealsorcontentofview.spirit,pointAnd here we encounterthe paradox. There is no doubt, ofthat the Romans wereindeed differentfrom thecourse,Greeks. The trouble is that what most people,theincludingnotRomansthistodifferencedoesthemselves,be,thoughtseem to have anysaid Virgil,Others,literary significance.inof course the Greeks, will be better sculptorsmeaningscientistsbronze and marble,betterand astronomers:theis political,the art of ruling manyspecific Roman superiorityone government.underin other words, canRomans,peoplesadministerand legislate better than anyone else, but cultureas such is not their forte. Here, toquote Horace, Greece conorherfierceRomanRome"s originalityconqueror.queredintodoesthisextenditsliterature.not,view,uniquenessLatin*Thispaperwasdeliveredas oneoftheJamesFentonLecturesthe State University of New York at Buffalo in November 1966.This content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditionsat l86THE UNIQUENESS OF LATIN LITERATUREIt is curious how influentialthis view has been and howresistant to obvious fact. The thesis that Roman is an inferiorcopy of Greek literature sheds singularly little fight on Romanliterature as a phenomenonof the Hellenisticworld.TheasGreekofhadgreat agepoetry,everybody knows,virtuallyceased by the close of the fifth century B.C.: epic, choral andpersonallyric, tragedy and comedy had achieved definitiveand fallen into obvious decline. Aside from theexpressioncase of the so-calleddoubtful"new" comedy,the originalgenres of the fourth century were prose: history, oratory, thephilosophicdialogue. No poet had the standing of DemosThere was a curious revival ofthenes, Plato or Aristotle.in the middle of the third centuryGreek poetry in AlexandriaofB.C., but this was exphcidy based on an acknowledgmentits post-classicalsituation. The old forms were dead: hencethe attempt to innovate in style, genre and content, to be deas Callimachusliberately r?cherch?. In any event, poets suchwere a flash in the pan. Theand Theocritusimportant Hellenistic literature after 250 B.C. was in prose, and even thisinferior to that of the fourth century. Yetprose was decidedlyRome in the first century B.C. and in thecenturysucceedingand a quarter not only produced great poets and prose writerswith whom no contemporaryGreek could be compared, butthemoribundrevivedepic and lyric poetryeffectivelylongof Homer, Alcaeusand Pindar.If this was only imitation,imitate whenthe Greeks could not? Andwhy could Romansareworks of genius such as those of Cicero,acknowledgedto beand TacitusSallust, Catullus, Lucretius, Virgil, Horaceas imitationsaistheredismissedhereonly? Clearly,phenomenon whichthe imitation theory cannot explain.at all?concernThis problem did not greatly?orthe Midor indeed the seventeenthdle Ages and the Renaissance,anderas Greek literature was eithercenturies.Intheseeighteenthor verywasunknowngreatly overshadowedby Latin, whichthen the real lingua franca of educated Europe. The fifteenthin one sense the revival ofmarkedcentury RenaissanceawarenesstruethebutofGreek,scope and poweroriginality,someinandof Greekandcomedytragedy, lyricdegree ofGreek epic and history, was reserved for the late eighteenthcenturies. Romantic Hellenism?theand nineteenthHellenism of Winckelmann,and Shelley?wasH?lderlinthe forceintellectualthat finally broke the educational,and culturalThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis187dominanceand Ovid were now atof Rome. Virgil, Horacelast seen to be inferior imitators of original Greek poets. Romewasindeed a worthyand institutionalobject of historicalwasMommsenandthe great corpusstudy?thereaccordinglyof Latin inscriptions?butGreece was the only proper fieldfor the esthetically motivatedscholar. Thus Wolffreleased anHomericfloodofwh?eoverwhelmingscholarshipVirgilwasArelatively neglected.good word, of course, could stilland Lucretius?theybe said for Catullushad "original" elements that even romantics could recognize?butlittle indeedfor the "imitative" Augustan poets.Latin literature has thus been under a cloud. It was perhaps not too hard to do at least some justice to Cicero since,after all, his speeches and letters came out of anobviouslyRoman milieu?thelife ofpolitics and the law courts. Butthis was not true of the poets. A very great deal of nineteenthcentury Latin scholarship was in fact a quite simple-mindedsources ofsearch for the Greek, particularlythe Hellenistic,at the very end of the cenRoman poetry. It wasreally onlyand, most partictury that scholars such as Leo and NordentoRichardHeinzeinshowdetailularly,convincingbeganthat Roman authors did very new and originalthings withtheir Greek models. Even this attempt was limited and hesiwas the maintant. Leo, forof the theoryexample,proponentwasthat Roman amatoryin detailandcopied directlyelegyfrom a Greek model, and Heinze,histoservicesdespitegreataadvancedhisofHorace,curiouslytheorydepreciatorylyrics. It has, in fact, been only in the last three or four decades that such scholars as Burck,Klingner, P?schl, Fraenkeland L?fstedt have tried to view Livy,or TacVirgil, Horaceitus in what may be called aRomanproperlyperspective.Nor has this very recentreached anythinglikedevelopmenta matureor definitiveresult. Withfew exceptions,the retosearch has been directedparticular authors and works andattentionlittlehasbeen paid to the broader probsingularlylem of Latin literature or even of LatinItpoetry as a whole.isItalians ) havecertainly true that some scholars ( especiallywritten(Bignone andinteresting histories of Latin literatureinbuthasbeen impresRostagniparticular),generalizationsionistic and scattered andto the desubordinatedmainlytaded treatment of individual authors. Thus the realproblem,the problem I briefly alluded to above?how,indeed, RomansThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions l88THE UNIQUENESS OF LATESTLITERATUREimitate the60 B.C. and 125 A.D. could successfullyor Hellenisticin aGreeksthoroughlypost-classicalSo my topic is still, paradoxbeen largely neglected.age?hasa rather novel one, on whichthe last word orically enough,no means been said.even thehaswordpenultimatebyonit is clear, wereThe Romans,culturallydependentanGreece.Rome was not, like Greece,cultureoriginativethat could or did produce new art forms and new art motifs,anorart and literature. Evenobviously originalself-generatedwehadandshall learn more ofofcourse,sources,Greeks,and Hittitethem as we learn more of Minoanculture and ofthe Middle East in general. But it is hardly likely that futurethe force of the "Greekdiscovery will very gready diminishlitermiracle." The centiiry of discovery,for example, whosein such a volume as Pritchard"sary results are now accessiblesome motifs and ideas thatNear Eastern Texts, has revealedinfromthe GreeksAsia, but has in generalgotcertainlyour sense of Greekcreased rather than decreasedoriginality.theBut Rome was, like the rest of the Mediterraneanworld,heir of Greece. Nor did Rome show any particularaptitudefor inventing art forms or art motifs of its own. We can specusuchlate, for example, as to what under other circumstances,as the suddenoutinPersianofliteraturetheGreekblottingin fact,wars, the native Saturnian meter might have become:to continueit was hardly possiblefor an author like Enniusto use it when he had access to the magnificentlydevelopedof the Greeks. And so for all other metersdactylic hexameterand genres ( satire is at best a partial and obscure exception ).ofalso lacked the subject matterRomeMoreimportant,isindeedthevehicleofpoetry: poetrymyth?oftenoriginalaororRome wasmyths of Heroic Age?andusually the mythorinEventhesomewhatjpoormyth.lackingnotoriouslyor of Ovid"s FastioffirstbookofthreadbaretheLivylegendsareRome had nolaced with Greekimportations.heavilyno HeroicHomer, no Cyclic Epic, no Myceneanbackground,it have a religion like Greek religion:didNorthe notoAge.of the city of farmers and fighters seems torious utilitarianismhave kept its gods within very narrow limits that largely exsoin Greeceandcludedthe mythopoeicimpulsevigorousin other cultures.the curiously deceptivecharacter of RoAll this explainsman literature. Itsis no surface phenomenon.It isoriginalitybetweenclassicalThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis189hidden, obscured by an elaborate Greek veneer. We can besta fewget at it by considering brieflyexamples and then usingdiem as the stepping stones to a few, necessarilytentative andincomplete,generalizations.Let us take first the phenomenonof Cicero. As an oratorand a writer of treatises on philosophy,and rhetoric,politicshe does not seem at first sight so original. He had been preceded by Demosthenesand many other Greek orators, and noone would call him anYet his letters areoriginal philosopher.come down to us fromcertainly unique: nothing like them hasthe Greeks, and this is not merely because analogouscollections of Greek letters have not been preserved.Some originalletters and many moreletters of famous Greeksimaginaryor Plato have come down to us. Ifsuch as Philip of Maced?na minimumwe haveof authentic material, we at leastonlyknowofthetype or form that Greeks desired in asomethingletter they thought worthThis isreading and preserving.or of otherofdifferentfromtheCicerolettersstrangelyRomanssuch as Trajan and the younger Pliny. For compain Greek, we have to go to Christianrable human documentstimes, to the letters of Basil the Great and Gregory of Naziand even these are very far removedanzus, for example,from the kind of thing we get in Cicero. The fact seems to bethat Greeks did not care to write or preservetheir letters asof a concrete, unique momentin a specific persondocumentsawe can realize Cicero,ality andspecific milieu. This is whycan penetrate hishispersonal history,experience,day-to-dayas weany of the Greeks.simply cannot realize or penetrateThereis certainly more here than an accident:Romansvalued and sowhattheclassicalGreeks, certainlypreservedornottodidvaluesameliketheGreeks,preserveanythingdegree.We can see muchin the poetry ofthe same phenomenonor Ovid. TheCatullusearly Greek poetry is very fragmenthattary and the later Greek poetry(such as, for example,of the Palatine Anthology)ison aobviouslyarrangedquiteimpersonal basis?bytopic rather than by author. Yet thereis no evidencea libellus orthat any classical Greekcomposedon hislittle collectionof poemsandlove-affairspersonalor even on hisandreactions.friendshipspoliticalfeelingsThe preservedas Plato, Calli"epigrams" of such Greeksor Theocritusare eithermachusor, ifimpersonalseverelyThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions igOTHE UNIQUENESS OF LATIN LITERATUREso and withoutany real context. Wepersonal, disconnectedlythink of Catullus with his Lesbia, of Propertiusand Cynthia,at Rome: of what Greekof Ovid at Tomis, or Martialpoet doawe have a similar personalintoidea,comparableglimpsecanhis social, local and temporal milieu? Weexplain, persome of thisof preservation,but cerhaps,by the accidentsnot all of it. Greekisandpersonalpoetrytainlymovingit does not give us orbutwantvivid,emotionallyseeminglyato give us a realpersonality,uniquelysubjective mood.and Alcaeus were, we know,Archilochusof fiercecapableas we deduceBut thehates and fierce attachments.feeling,seems bare; the emotion naked ratherit from the fragments,than personallyclothed or, more exactiy, clothedin an enconcrete enoughto give us the full sense of realvironmentpersons.case of Horaceis here veryHorace"senlightening.twointofallin dethepoemspoemscategories:generalandsatiresthethehexameters,"prosaic"episdes,liberatelyto allow for thethat of course are meant"conversations"his father,author"s ego, the personal detail about Maecenas,or encounter withhis Sabine farm, his journey to Brundisiumthe lyric poems in Alcaic, Sapthe bore; and, quite distinct,andimiotherthat are avowedmeters,phic, Asclepiadicandtations of, among others, Alcaeus,Pindar.ObviSapphooristo be more"lyric" categorydesignedously, the secondtoformal and morethe stockimitative, moreresponsivereand Hellenisticthemes of Hellenicwine,poetry?love,and the evaneslaxation, the seizing of the passing momentcence ofat amortal?and,level, moreeveiythinghigheror to solemn moral exhortation.totheofgreatpraiseadaptedtoAnd in so far as Horaceclaimed to be a poet, he claimedin other words,to this second catebe a lyric poet, to belong,gory. The first category was, in his own phrase, "mere talk,"sermo merus, orrhythmical prose.a ratherYet this is obviouslythatsuperficial distinctionas soon as we penetratethe formalitiesofbeneathcollapsesseem to be no morethe verse. There are Horatianlyrics thatof vinous orthan studies from the Greek,reproductionsno connectionthathavewithamatorytopoi,apparendyera. But these areor Rome or theeither HoraceAugustanis characteristicallyis anot characteristic:whatHoratianof Greekmoralcurious mixturemotif,lyriccommonplace,TheThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis191Romanexhortationand, mostphilosophicgeneralization,as the seizing ofreminiscence.suchIdeascuriously, personalthe present momentthe need to relax, to find(carpe diem),time for love and wine, the mvulnerabilityof the sage and theorof caring too muchfor wealthpoet, the undesirabilityoranmindneedforthebalancedpower,politicalequalataraxia and Stoic apatheia?(aequanimitas),Epicureanso toexemeach and all are "Horatianized,"speak, by beingown life.intheplifiedpoet"sownIt is, in fact, Horace"sthethat elevatesexperienceinto the Pindaric ode and enables him to rangejeu despritthe gamut of all moodsand themes. Poeticinvulnerabilityin the integer vitaedoes not seem so very serious a matteris madeinto a sort ofwhere Horace"sescape from the wolfwarrantfor the hummingof love ditties in all weathersandamoeseematNorinitall1.17doesserious("Veloxplaces.entertainsthe girl Tyndaris under thenum") when Horaceofthe god Faunus. Yet what could bepersonal protectionmore solemn than thetohe attributespoetic ^vulnerabilityin the great Odetohimself"Descende(3.4:Augustusthe unc?elo") : he is there a charmed soul, since babyhoodMuses"ofanduntouchabletheassailable,protection,objectthus the peer of Augustusand of the gods who, in virtue ofcanover thetheir harmonious wisdom,triumphgiants.we all know the carpe diem poems, the exhortationsAgain,not toor life,love and wine while we haveneglectyouthsometimeswiththeassociatedSabinevillafamouspoemsand sometimes not. The topos is trite indeed, the stock incantrade of the second-rate Hellenisticlyric. But how easilyHoraceof atarexpand this theme to the whole philosophyaxia and apatheia in the great Maecenasode ( 1,29 ), whereinwe also find a marvelousmost characterisallofhisharmonytic ideas: the value of a moderateto exincome as opposedcessive wealth,his friendshipfor Maecenasand his proudof his own independence,consciousnessand, once again, hiscasedivineIneachthepoet uses his owninvulnerability.life?hisSabine farm, his friends great and small, his bigand little escapes from disasterthe(the flight from Philippi,even the local wine of histree-fall, the shipwreck),birthdayto connectthe thread on whichthe Greekyear?aslyricthe Roman patrioticideas and the philosophicalmotifs,reflections.This content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions 10,2THEUNIQUENESSOFLATTNLITERATUREYet this is surely nothing at all like autobiography.Horaceasas aabout himselfis not so much writinghimselfusingsort of dramatisIn the satires and thepersona.peculiarthe same thing: in the sixth satireepistles he is doing muchfamoussecondbook"Hoc erat in votis") he startsof the(thewiththe contrast betweenhis life on the Sabine farm andhis life in Rome, but this is actually or ostensiblyonly themouse and thetothetaletheofamusingcountrycitypreludea sound but very coma tale whichseems tomouse,pointmoral. The personal reference, of course, takes themonplacetale is actually related byoffmoral:the cautionarytheedgeits sturdy naiveterustic neighbor Cervius;is a welHorace"scome relief from the smart butRomangossip aboutboringor dancers. Theand tritegladiatorsplatitudinouspolitics,tone or nuance, atis thus given, as it were, a peculiarmoralonce humorous,and sincere. Horaceis veryself-deprecatoryfor his own affectaurbane, even sly, always on the watchsensebut this ever-presenttions, his own self-righteousness,meanshis own role?isthewhichof himself?ofhereallybybetweenhumor andeffects the shift of tone, the alternationand thebetweenthe prosaicthe movementseriousness,whichsuchvariaallthedevicesringpoetic,extraordinaryfew and relativelytions on the relativelycommonplacethemes of his poetry. But all of the themes are transmittedthe peculiar HoratianHorace?orrole he happensthroughto assume?andit is this that gives thempoeticalvitality.acan be greater than to measureHoraceNo mistakebyromantic standard: he expresses no untrammeledemotion, orstudied and shrewdlysheer passion, but instead a carefullyBecausetheand morals of themotifscalculatedself-portrait.toassimilatedbeenthehavepoemstheyalreadyportrait,that is vastly disproportionachieve a reality and complexityate to their thematicHorace"sindeedpoetrysimplicity.illustrates the Roman paradox: his poetry is so Greek in onecomin another. Beside itssense; so utterly un-Greekbafllingand surprise, triteness and complexity,binationof platitudeat any rate disarminglyGreek poetry seems almost primitive,simple.But we must not think of the Roman writer as concernedtrue: inIn Cicero this is nearly or mainlyonly with himself.for an esit is rather the using of self-knowledgeHoraceboth proceduresend. Whatthetic, essentiallyimpersonalThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis193an introspectiveis an essentialsubjectivity,imply, however,athatandabovehabitall,repays introspecpsycheperhaps,tion. But the introspectivethat goeshabit and the psychewith it are in no sense confined to the Roman author himself.he creates characters, he describesthem in quite theWhensameThisishecouldshow, when heway.introspectivewhyaas wesuchofcharacterwished,hardly finddevelopmentat all among the Greeks.it in thePuttingsimplest possiblea Roman was aware of his ownway: becausepsychic dewas aware of it in others.hevelopment,for example,the case of Dido.She is, partiallyConsider,on the Medeaat least, modeledof Rhodes"of ApolloniusanonceatisMedea(aArgonautica.Apollonius"ing?nueto the first experienceof amatory pasyoung girl subjectedindeed, ission) and a witch, a skilled enchantress. Medea,made to fall in love with Jason (Eros shoots her at the comso she can putbined request of Aphrodite, Hera and Athene)atsosurvive theher magiccouldheJason"s disposal. Onlyisordeals that beset the Golden Fleece. But once the Fleecewon and Medea goes off with her lover, welosesightlargelyof her. Only when Jason, under great pressure from her purto a decisionreaches what amountssuing brother Apsyrtus,to give her up does shere-enter thereallyplot: then sheshows a fury and rage for which we have been quite unprepared. Yet she drops this entirely whenJason relinquisheshis plan and, on her advice, ambushes andkillstreacherouslytheintobrother.SheuntilApsyrtus,again relapsesobscurityaforceslegalistic quibble of their later host, King Alcinous,cave marher to relinquish her virginity and undergo ahastynoor evenriage with Jason. There is atpoint developmentofaccountcharacter:theofhercontinuitylongoriginalstruggle with love ( the struggle of "shame" and "desire" ) isto lapse into a few isolated andcuriously allowedquite inThethetheaffiancedamoureuse,witch,congruous episodes.thethethebelatedvirgin,jealous virago,cunning murderess,bride are all, as it were,individualswithoutseparateanyorpersonalpsychic connection.Yet Virgiltakes every one of these separateApollonianMedeasand makes each into a phase of asingle psychologicaladrama in whichfrom asingle character, Dido,developsnoble queen and womaninto a veritableincarnation of refirst meets her, in Book 1, ais, when Aeneasvenge. DidoThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions 194THE UNIQUENESS OF LATIN LITERATUREa heroine who instinc(as the simile indicates),isto the hero Aeneasand whose hospitalitytively respondsbut one indication of her open, generous, heroic nature. Shean alter Aeneas who hasis busy, happy, responsible,alreadymade good as he has not. Then we see her in love: her passionit isis of course fatal (for she cannot hope to hold Aeneas);a threat to herhera wound,a lethal wound,regal position,true Dianapietas(to the dead Sychaeus), and her human dignity.her passion does not, like Medea"s,incongruaforintoof waitingperiod of static expectation,ously lapsea properinof"cavebecomesTheArg.4marriage.marriage"it is an illicit act of passionthe Aeneid a tragic consummation:infatuationblindsthat starts a new train of events. Dido"sshe insists that the guilty affair is coniugiumher judgment:and defies public opinion by openly living with Aeneas. Then,is rudelythe inevitable exposure comes, when Aeneaswhenthe fury that Medea wasrecalled to his duty, Dido becomesto get rid of her. But how differwhen Jason seemed willingent the motivationand action of the fury is! In the Argothat comes andit is a thing of the passing momentnauticaor result. In the Aeneid,it iseitherwithoutgoespreparationthe fatal shiftthe inevitable outcome of irrational behavior,to frustrated rage.from love to jealousy, from erotic passioninstead of the rational, genDido"s character is transformed:in theerous, heroic queen, we now see a virago, a womannowasorceressshealsofearandofthroes(forvengeance,driven by her impotent remorse and hatredsticks at nothing)to suicide and a curse on the future, a wish to darken civilization itself. She finally reaches the point of absolute,implacable hostility to Aeneas and all he represents: her cold silenceis the end of her drama, the pitiless, unin the underworldthe originally generous and noble womanthatforgiving beinghad now become.It is difficult for us today to understand why Virgil was soto rearrangethe incidentsconcerned(or some of the inciinto this utterly differentdents ) of the Argonauticastory ofin fact makediditisYetclearthathedestructivepassion.use of Medea"sher jealous fury, her skill inamorousness,cavecurioushereven, strangely enough,sorcery,marriage;But the main point, of course, is that byher erotic wound.andher emotionsfrom vrithin, by followingseeing Didoconstantandthemotives, by empathy,penetrationsympathy,NeverthelessThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis195makes us see her character in all itsreading of her psyche, heand so gives dramaticandtransformationdevelopmenttragicto his epic. Aeneas,not what he had beenistoo,historicityshe is an experiencebefore he met Dido:that, bitter as itto prepare him for the Roman future he was towas, helpedin the Show of Heroesin Aeneid 6. All this is Roman,witnessare all there (even down tonot Greek. The Greek motifscurious and seemingly extraneous details such as the cave andatoits howling bridal nymphs ), but they are madeperformfunction that has nothing to do with their original meaning.Now there has been a long and rather semantic debate asto whetherthis sort of thing?theDido narrative, for exampleto?isintermsof "character developbedescribedreallysense. To some scholars it seems to bement" in the modernor Roman?underalmost an axiom that no ancient?GreekSuch a view seems to me notstood "character development."so much wrong asIf we understand"charactermisleading.as we find it in(in, fordevelopment"onlyShakespeareor in a modernor Hamlet)Macbethnovel(Stenexample,then obviously Virgildhal, for example, or Anthony Powell),or any ancient does not have it.What we find inVirgil"s Dido,inin his Turnus and in Aeneas(in all his major characters,is rather a dramatic change or transformation,other words)aso toa linethe drives andpassing,beyond whichspeak, ofare quiteweremotivesfromdifferentwhatstartlinglytheybefore.Now to a certain extent this is also true of Greek or anydrama: the essence of drama is conflict and change. Achillesgives up his wrath and rejoins the battle; the Furies becomeisfromand changesthe Eumenides;Oedipusenlightenedto abject despair; Heraclesconfidenceloses his old identityto find himself thealtogether when he emerges from madnessof his wife and children. But wheremurdererVirgil, andin general, go beyondis in their psyRomansthe Greeksawareness of motive,their capture of thoughtschology, theirin transformation.and emotionsGreek heroes are, as it were,it iswhatfrom without:motivatedhappens to them, not whatin them, that we see. Hereis not quitehappensperhaps Didoso(Roman, that is, as a character conceivedclearly Romanand drawn by a Roman author) as Turnus or Aeneas.

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Greeksalso of course depicted womentransformed by jealousy (asa womanbut no Greek depictedPhaedra, Deianira, Medea),This content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions ig6THE UNIQUENESS OF LATIN LITERATUREin the manner of Dido"s; notransformedsamekind of debasement,thethequite encompassedof a truly heroic and humane psyche by an evilsupersessionone that is yetaware of what hasand destructivecuriouslyto it, of its own loss ofhappeneddignity and of all freedomto act except for self-destruction.In Turnus, on the other hand, the movementof characteris from mere HomericAchillean?toquitearet??somethingof fate, even of death. As the alternaacceptancevoluntarytive of death or honor is repeatedlyoffered, as each disruption of peace terms, each escape from the heat of unfavorablebattle leads only to further disaster and the further sufferinglearns to submit, toof his friends, Turnusforego both histotoandhishimselfothers. And sosacrificeegoismsafety,learns to accept a destinythat beginstoo, of course, Aeneasoldallhiscontinuesandby destroyinghopes,allegiancesbyof love and concludeswiththecutting off die possibilitywar. He is in factof fighting an unwantednecessitywhollyin the underworld. WevisionofRomeremotivatedthebyrealize such remotivation(in both Turnus" and Aeneas" case)we see it inside them, so toonly becausespeak, only becauseour ownistransferredintrospectiveactivityempatheticallyto them. It is this that is Roman, whether we call it "characteror not. The Greeks did not have it.development"commonto Cicero, HoraceThe importantthing that isand the inward seizureand Virg? is the introspective methodthat this entails. Whetherof motive and of psychic movementintoandthemselvesrevealwhat they see as Cicerolooktheyin his satires and lyrics, ordoes in his letters, or Horacewhetherthey look into others and grasp their psychesbyarein muchthe same activity. Buttheyengagedempathy,athis is not merely a technique,The realliterary procedure.man and of humandifferentofistheconceptionpointsocietysaw and wrotethat it implies. Greeksobby and largenot meanof course that they ignoredjectively. This doesmean thator lackedself-insight. But it doespsychic factstheyaswere notnot subjectivelycommitted,engaged,personallyRomans were. Romans, we may say, were practical,involved,not at all detachedmoralisticand, comparativelyspeaking,orobservers.objectiveIf they had been able to put the unexaminedpremise ofsuch an attitude into words, they would have arrived at somewhoseGreekcharacter wasThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis197not too differentfrom one of the main principlesofthingthat the bimodernexistentialism?thatis, the principlefurcation of subject and object tends to underminethe sensetoof subjectivity,sinceandthethus destroyit,objectifyora sentenceitsofisdestructiveofobjectpredicatealwaysoranaamisI"I"HelenWhenthatAmerican"saysubject.in theI of course dissolve the "I" or the real Helenwoman,"or womanof Americanismquite non-subjectivecategoriesto the definition of the thing"shood, concepts that contributeits subjectiveobjectivereality, but quite lose contact withessence. Wecanthislessputbypretentiously,perhaps,someone who says,saying that the Roman attitude is that of: am involvedor rather feels ( for he does notusually say it ) "Iwith you in my, your and our fate or destiny; it is our uniquewe must exhort, ensense of this that counts. This iswhyour commonotherfortheunderstandeachcourage,living ofare not at all concernedto stand outside of ourlife. Weselves: that sort of thing is useless or impractical. To thedetached, we will of course seem to be only practical, moralnot grasp our subistic, incurious. This is becausethey dolack such a drivejective drive and becausetheyperhapsthemselves."And it is this basic feeling(for it is hardly an idea) thatwe may find, I think,in the Roman historians.pre-eminentlyarenot detachedor obSallust, Livy or Tacitusobviouslyorandwere,jective in the sense that ThucydidesPolybiusnot even, I think, in the sense that Herodotuswas. It is clearthat Thucydideswas, as an Athenian,very much moved byasthe PeloponnesianWarand by such Atheniandisastersthe loss of the army and fleet atItIhasnot,think,Syracuse.been sufficiendy observed how his style and attitudechangein the passageof the seventh book that describesthe finaldefeat of Demosthenes.But this is, as it were, ahard-wrungan obviousto the author"s emotions,concessiontoexceptionas an Athenian buthis avowed objectivity. He is notwritingas anthe factsimpartial observer,scientificallyarranginginto generalizationsthat will be interestingin their own rightand a useful guide to future statesmen. Wecan say thesurelysameso curious about Rome,oftheGreekthingPolybius,so concernedto explainwhy Rome could conquer the worldwhen Greeks could not dosort. And Herodanything of theasenseinnotandotus, thoughyet quite freepre-scientificThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions 198THE UNIQUENESS OF LATIN LITERATUREwasalso surely a prodigyof disof the mythicalpast,interested curiosity: he was involved in, certainly glad of, theGreek victory over the Persians, but he was more concernedtoandthe civilizationsof Egyptit, to understandexplainAsia and their differencefrom Greece.We may say indeed that Greek historia is not at allhistoryor classicin our sense, but a series of problemsinvestigatedand analyzed. Thucydides"cases" examinedrealized that theWar was peculiarlyof his attentionPeloponnesianworthyit was the best and biggestof wars: his so-calledbecauseanwasto demonstratethis.simplyattempt"archaeology"He had no interest in the past for its own sake, but solely inalike himself. He wantedits comparativeutility to historianwere tooto show that previous wars(like the Trojan War)obscure and too limited to be good "subjects" or "problems."is also true of Polybius"Thissubject(the quick rise ofor Herodotus"Greek triumph atRome)(the extraordinarySalamis and Plataea ) : each has his own intriguingMarathon,case oris, of course, some sense of practicalproblem. Thereat least can learn a lesson), but essentiallyutility (statesmenare exis sheer curiosity:what predominatesthe problemsinandthemselves.citinginterestingis the outlookHowof the Romanhistorians!differentan introductionto his CatiliSallust, for example, prefixesas a Roman, he describesnarian Conspiracyinwhich, writingin terms that wethe rise and decline of the Republictodaythink of as almost simplistic moralities.Rome was virtuousand conqueredthe world:then it becameand,fat, wealthyis an instance of extreme degeneration.so, corrupt. Catilinehe tells us in his prefacethatLivy follows his example:is one of primitivevirtue corrupted,andRome"s historyis meant as a moralindicates only too clearly that the wholeIt is easy to dismissthis overlesson to his countrymen.to compareit unandovermoralizedtheory,simplifiedor Polybius,withtheofobjectivityThucydidesfavorablyits truly Romanits meaning,but it is even easier to missare Roman, are inisthatSallustandAndthisLivypoint.areas thenand historicallyconcerned,volved,subjectivesee Rome,as aare not.in other words,Greek modelsTheyare a part andmoral persona, a social persona of whichtheyaccess. They seeto whichtherefore they have introspectiveassee itsseesit from within,muchverydevelopmentVirgilThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis199so see, theirthe developmentof Dido. And becausetheyofandtheirofmethodnarration,techniquedescriptionarewhollyanalysis, their point of view and feeling for historydifferent.I have no space to illustrate my general pointObviouslyin this connection,toless(still"prove" it!), but I will make,a few remarks about theRomanofhistorians, Corgreatestnelius Tacitus.aroundrevolvesTacitus" workthe terriblethe factyear 69 A.D., the year of the three emperors. Despitethat in the preface to his Historieshe expressed an intentionto carry the workinto thebeyond Domitianhappier reignsof Nerva and Trajan, he did not actually do so: instead histo comelast and greatest work,the Annals, was designeddown to the year from whichtake off?thethe Historiesyear69. Tacitus,in other words,the "morefinally relinquishedfruitful and less dangerousand Trajansubject" of Nervatowiththedeal("uberioremmateriam")securioremquecourse andofthededespotism,progressivedevelopmentteriorationthat reached one climax in Nero and another inown view is that this wasDomitian.Myquite intentional?that his subject wastwotyranny, withreally progressiveclimaxes. Unfortunately,the loss of the final two books of theAnnals and of the last seven or nine books of the Historiesus fromorthe scheme to its conclusionpreventsfollowingeven fromcertainmostitsdeofanyacquiringknowledgesure of is that Tacitus"cisive features. All we can bereallytheme is tyranny?itsand its ultideteriorationprogressivemate crisis.His situation was peculiar andit is plain thatambiguous:his political career was not interrupted eventhe terduringarible reign of Domitiannostram("dignitatemVespasianoinchoatam, a Tito auctam, a Domitianolongius productam")in hisand reached its apogeeof(under Nerva)consulship97. Unlikethe good Agr?cola,he survived andseeminglyunder tyranny. This fact explains in part his genprosperederal attitude toward history:in his Historieshe reprehendsalike the flattery and the hatred of historiansof the JulioClaudianemperors. Each attitude distorts; each lacks thehistoricaltruth ("incorrupta fides"). But there is more herethan a simple disclaimerof bias. Tacitus represents himself asa realist, an avoider ofand unfruitfulpompousdisplays ofvirtue. We can see his position quiteclearly from his praiseThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions 200THEUNIQUENESSOFLATINLITERATUREfor the ostentatiousof Agr?cola, his perceptiblesuidistasteawarenessof the contrastcide of Seneca and his pointedevenLucan"sbetweenand cowardly,rhetoricrepublicanend.ofThelikethatofNero, wasDomitian,dastardly,reigna time whensloth wastaken for wisdom("inertia prostill possiblefor great men to fiveyet it wassapientia");under bad emperorsetiam sub malis("posseprincipibusvirosThewhenrebellion paid, when reesse").magnosdayswas acause, had long gone by. Aupublicanismpracticalhadgustuscorrupted everybody. All that the final successfulrebellion against Nero really produced was a demonstrationas well as inin the provincesthat emperors could be madeonRome. The year 69 was the bitterest possible commentaryall attempts to "restore" the republic.Thus abuse is as foolish as supine acquiescence:the goodstatesman and historianis he who loves virtue withoutfoolishof it, whois a patriot withindemonstrationsthe limits ofaction permitted by evil emperors orinterby the occasionalludes ofin either case knows that hisandones,goodpoliticalinitiative is mitigatedof character thatby the degenerationorall despotism?whetherpresupposesbad?inevitablygoodand fosters. It was now too late for liberty. What was leftwas theasthe good death.important,good life and, quitein no way diminishesAll this, however,the sense of thein which Tacitus,Roman persona, of the social destinylikeall other Romans, wasinvolved. The Sallustianand Livianto ais thus subjectedtheory of Romanhistorypeculiarnuance of realistichasretrospect?thepredictedhappened:the Republichas gone; slavery has replacedliberty. Nowone canaware of both thefiveandlookback,onlysplendorand the limits of virtue.is remarkablein Tacitus,Whatis the sense oftherefore,undernot quiteofvirtuebutalmostgreatnesspressure,menevertoofdiewellbut realextinction,facingreadywetowellfivewhenconcernedisticallypossible. Alwaysfeel the author"s incisive personality?hisparti pris, his judgwe feel his involvementment of Roman society?andalwaysor bad?Tiberius,in it. His charactersgoodAgrippina, Nero,VitelliusThrasea Paetus, the soldier Subriusor, alternatively,or the historian Aulus CremutiusallCordus?areFlavus,seen from inside,Sometimesthis is only aempathetically.This content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis201it is avery partial view, a snapshot, so to speak; sometimesasinwithTiberius, Sejanus(studydegenerationstep-by-stepamountsto the transitionand Nero),though often thisonlyto bare-facedfrom hypocrisyYet whatwickedness.is mostand most striking are the mass scenes in whichcharacteristicthe collectivesoul of whole groups is laid bare: such are thein Germanyunder Germanicus,the Piso conspiracy,mutinythe occupation of Rome by Vitellius.area moral, a TaciteantoThe narrativesplanneddisplayasasortiswhichof Roman judgyet representedjudgment,in whichment?atheRomanvirtues,judgmentspecificimallitstheevilandsomehowdespiteapparenttriumph,even if, as we mustnote,pose themselves,particularlytheyin a Tacitean way. In his account of theimpose themselvesPiso conspiracyhe reveals, morehisclearly than elsewhere,final assessmentof his era. The conspiracy,thefirmdespiteness of the freedwomanis revealed by the folly ofEpicharis,Flavius Scaevinus and the rapacity of his freedman Milichus.and his associates, Natalis,Scaevinusetc.,Senecio, Lucan,are arrested, confronted,and bribed by promisesof immuthe others. Onlythe freednity: they shamelesslybetraywomantorture and dies withoutresistsEpicharistelling anynames.As for the rest, their deaths reveal the men and the times:Piso refuses to makethe great gesture or to seize the onlythe troops and the citizens and rousleft,hopeby accostinga last-minuteattack on the emperor; heing them toprefersto doSeneca dies with allnothing but await his executioners.the ostentatiousrhetoric of his essays,todictating philosophythe very end. But the militarySubriustellstribune,Flavus,Nero the blunt truth andgrimly chides the soldiers who makea poorstill!" ("nejob of digging his grave: "Bad disciplinehoc quidem ex disciplina"). Finally there is the unforgettableof the times. Whilethe city is filledpicture of the hypocrisywith funerals of the dead conspirators,the Capitol teems withvictims sacrificed to thein thanks for Nero"s salvationgodsand sacrificed by men who have each lost a son, brother,relative or friend in the conspiracy.on to deckThey then gotheir homes with laurel,Nerobeforeandbeslobbergrovelhis hand with kisses.haveleft suchhonor,Courage,dignitya world,invirtueyet even so it is redeemedbyunexpectedThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions 202THE UNIQUENESS OF LATTN IJTERATUREa freedwomanand an army officer really behaveplaces. Onlyat least, ofis still thewellThereunder pressure.ghost,Roman discipline.oras sheer reportingIt is absurd to treat this episodeitwithfactualisthehistory. Obviouslyarrangedmerelyare deliberate;sucthe narrativegreatest art: the emphaseseachandsentencecession contrived;eachhas itsparagraphcontrast ofandandfunction.TheMilichus,placeEpicharisand fortitude, of couraof cowardiceof Seneca and Flavius,inertiaaction and what may be called courageousgeousmerearetoAll(thedie)?allpartsdesigned.willingnessas their total result aTaciteanpeculiarlytogether producein the midst of degradation,the inability ofeffect: greatnessto lead and the decisiveof humanleaderspre-eminenceaover both life and death. Tacitusisdignityanything buttooisinandRomanhestillinvolvedhissocietydestinycynic:or the greatnesstothe values of courage and disciplineforgetIt is not theof the present.of the past in the degeneracySenecan gesture but the old militaryand Roman virtues thatfinally count.here isTheimportant point for our generalargumentTacitus" sense of the Roman persona, his conceptionof historyasto his own Romansoul, as part ofsomething happeningInhis own extended psychic development.the Reoutlivingas it were, outlivedso have allheButhimself.has,publicsince the fatal establishmentof despotismbygood Romans,Their fate is common: yet one can remain true toAugustus.one remains, so toRoman morality?astradition?tospeak,true to his dead ancestors. Here historyis still a personalThe differencebetweenthis conceptionand thatpossession.orisHerodotusNoneobvious.of Thucydides,Polybiussurelyof them were in this sense, to this Taciteandegree, historicalat all.Wecould go on to enumerateother instances of the sameYetdrawnthefrom Cicero, Horace,general point.examplesalmostfour greatest figuresandTacitusthe(Virgilcertainlyareto suggest, if not to support,in Latin literature)enoughis intromy thesis. The Latin letter writer, poet or historianandconcernedwithmotiveattitude,introverted,spective,with the state of his soul. By empathy he extends his introRomanand to his society?thespection to other individualsus what at leastpersona. This is why he givesclosely apThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis203and a sense of history concharacter developmentproachesorasceivedpersonal fatedestiny.to life and literatureThe limitations of such an approachassuchis obscured by theTheofobvious.are,course,objectthehishishis whollyauthor,Romanitas,bias,subject?byandinhimselfunconsciousinvolvementunreckoning,largelyis apt to producethehis society. At its worst, this approachor the most limitedtritest and most platitudinousmoralizingLeave"Be honest, be brave,show discipline.practicality.toNosciencetheGreeks.andabstractthoughtphilosophy,Roman can afford the time for them. The Roman state is theor preoccupationof a man."only worthy occupationancientsSuch a point of view has long been so obvious?toorhasitsand modernsalike?thatspiritual meaningliteraryit is in no senseindeed usually,been generally,ignored. Fora mereor of Greek culture innegation of cultureparticular,or at least it is not when translated from theparody of it justset forth above into its more basic and fundamental meaning.or to createtoThe Roman was not primarily concernedstudyno obviousextraneoustohadwhichhimself,objectsobjectsorconnectionwith his own psyche,societyhistory. TheRoman had almost nothing of the amazing plastic imagination of the Greeks,the ability to create gods, statues, characters, literary types, architecturalunits, each with clear-cutexternal. Yet the Romanoutlines, distinct, visual, objective,in such creation because he wasuninterestedwas, basically,interested in something quite different and indeed quite aliento it. This was quitenecessimply himself, his psyche?notegocentric psyche, but still a psychesarily his individualistic,athat he could introspect and empatheticallyproject,psychethat he could very often identify with his society, with Romeand its history, but a psyche nonethelessthat was first andforemost in himself, a subject and not at all an object.In primitive Rome, or the early republican Rome, this wasa rather unindividuateddoubtlesspsyche and the introspection had nothing at all of the modernor"self-analybroodingsis" that we often associate with the term. Nor can wereallythe immenseimagine how it would have developed withoutstimulus of Greek literature, thought and culture. The probaitnot haveRome would havebility is that woulddeveloped:or would have borrowedhad no literature, art or architecture,these from one or another of the non-Greekcultures. In anyThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions 204THE UNIQUENESS OF LATIN LITERATUREevent, Rome did undergo Greek influence to an extreme dereaction againstgree. The first result was a crudely Philistineaimitativeit or, alternatively,of it. Butacceptanceslavishlysufficient command ofthe Romans achievedwhen eventuallyideastheir own language to adapt it to Greek metres, myths,also able, as it were, to "deand thought forms, they becameart andtothe objectiveobjectify" or, positively,subjectivizeliterature of the Greeks. The inner self, the introspectiveapthe sense of history,thusthe empatheticnarrative,proach,literaturefor the first time: the result wasreally entereda new world,thethanthelessopening ofnothingfinding ofa new dimension.the Greeks may have been in theFor howeversplendidcreation of objects, they were, relativelyspeaking, very backof their own psyches. Theyward and weak in the penetrationor extremewere extroverts of atype?not,singularly radicalsense of Philistines who did notextrovertsintheassuredly,but extrothink (the "outer-directed"people of Riesmann),of people whoseverts in the sense of objectivists,thought iseven whenthinkoffor, ofthemselves,theyself-transcendingcourse, the Greek psyche was also an object to the Greek. TheRoman, on the contrary, did not try to objectify his psyche,this isbut rather to think, feel and act for it or for himself:sense of self, of others, of society and of society-inhiswhytime or -history was so different. This is what makes Cicero,soun-Greekand inHorace, Virgil or Tacitusfundamentallythis sense unique.to the questionraised at theAnd here lies the answerhowofthisHellenisticvery beginningpaper:post-classical,of their time, revive theLatinscould, unlike any GreeksandAlcaeusGreekclassics?reviveHomer,long-obsoleteimiPindar, for example?andproduce not just second-ratein theirtations but imitationsthat were also original worksownanswer liesin the subjectivityofpreciselyright. Thetheir introspectivetheir Romantheir approach,method,areof this, Dido, Turnus and Aeneasquitepsyche. Becausenew creations; Horace"sare Horatiannotandlyricsmerelyand Sapphic; Tacitus" historyis utterly un-ThucydiAlcaicliterature was classicallydean. Romanof thegreat becauseRomanwithintheandGreekspirit movinguniqueoriginalis whatRomanliteratureforms. Moreprecisely,happenswhen introverts rewrite the work of extroverts.This content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions Brooks Otis205All this of course cast a long shadow on the future. One ofas a scholar I have beenthe subjects with whichespeciallyinthe diesis ofwhichfact actually suggestedandconcerned,literaturethis paper to me, is the Greek and Latin Christianof the later Empire from about the second to the fifth centuryare more obvious thanA.D. Here,in a sense, the differencesin the classicalAlmostanyone can see, for example,period.is quite unparalleledthat Augustine"sConfessionsby anyGreek Christian work, even though we do in fact possess analmost exacdy contemporaryof a Greek ChrisautobiographyTooftheofNazianzus. Wetian,HimselfGregorylong poemof authenticalso, Imay remark, possess a relative abundanceletters by Greek and Latin Christiansof the period, as well, ofcourse, as all sorts of other writings:sermons, theologicaletc. The documentationis intreatises, apologies,histories,fact so rich that we can here make accurate comparisonsbetween Greeksand Romanssuch as the classicalliterature,because of its state of preservation,does not at all permit.I think the comparisonsfully bear out the general thesis Ihave been trying to expound. The inward or introspectiveinthat is so classically(I may say) exemplifiedapproachandis, byConfessionsAugustine"slarge, characteristicallyLatin. But the most interestingthing about it in its Christianform is the extent to whichorit has become "self-conscious"can seeWearticulate.howsuchphilosophicallyquite easilycardinal concepts asgod, man, sin, salvation, grace, forgiveboth receive a new meaningness, freedom and predestinationin Latin Christianatthe same time, bring outthought and,the latent meaningof aboriginal Latin concepts. It isthroughasin fact, that Rome or the Latinsuch writersAugustine,a source of newconsciousnessbecomesphilosophy?thesourcewithoutwhichsuch very recent developcertainlyments aswould be quite inexistentialismtwentieth-centuryconceivable.But we can say this also of most Westernphilosto Descartes,and theKant, Hegelophy from the Schoolmenanalysts of ordinary language.But this is too large atopic for the end of a paper. To conclude with the usualof an obiter dictum,I shouldprivilegelike to express my convictionthat the strangestthing, perhaps,about Latin literaturenot itsits uniquetoday isoriginality,toness, as I have tried in a merelyexpress itsuggestive waycritics andhere, but the much stranger incapacity of modernThis content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions 206THE UNIQUENESS OF LATIN LITERATUREor appreciateits uniqueness.scholars to understandIt is nottoo much to say that we have been, as it were, blindedby theGreeks. Yet there is really no need to minimizethe Greeks inorder to comprehendthe Romans. For a Latin scholar likein trying to producewhoismyselfprofessionallyemployedother Latin scholars, there is at least one hopeful thing aboutthe presentsituation. This is quite simply the fact that, dealltheof the subject?allofthe centuriesspiteantiquityLatin study, all the texts and commentaries,all the grammarsand dictionaries,all the formidableapparatus of Latin schoreally interesting and essential matter, the critilarship?thecal understandingof Latin literature, is a largely unfinishedis quite novel, quite in the future. Whythattask, somethingon itthis should be, I am not at all sure, and myspeculationsmust await another occasion. It istomomentfortheenoughaccept the fact itself.This content downloaded from 195.78.109.119 on Thu, 12 Jun 2014 12:56:55 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions

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