Intellectual and Empire in Greco-Roman Antiquity: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Intellectual and Empire in Greco-Roman Antiquity

1st Edition

Edited by Philip R. Bosman


222 pages | 4 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781138505094
pub: 2018-07-26
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pub: 2018-07-17
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This volume deals with the interaction between public intellectuals of the late Hellenistic and Roman era, and the powerful individuals with whom they came into contact. How did they negotiate power and its abuses? How did they manage to retain a critical distance from the people they depended upon for their liveli-hood, and even their very existence? These figures include a broad range of prose and poetry authors, dramatists, historians and biographers, philosophers, rhetoricians, religious and other figures of public status. The contributors to the volume consider how such individuals positioned themselves within existing power matrices, and what the approaches and mechanisms were by means of which they negotiated such matrices, whether in the form of opposition, compromise or advocacy. Apart from cutting-edge scholarship on the figures from antiquity investigated, the volume aims to address issues of pertinence in the current political climate, with its manipulation of popular media, and with the increasing interference in the affairs of institutions of higher learning funded from public coffers.


"Philip Bosman has brought together a distinguished group of scholars, who have illuminated this complex topic from a number of important and fascinating angles. Thus, anyone concerned with the intersections of the world of the mind and the world of politics in ancient Greece and Rome will find much of value here."

- Michael Peachin, New York University, USA

Table of Contents

List of figures

List of contributors


List of abbreviations

Chapter 1: Enlightened King or Pragmatic Rulers? Ptolemaic Patronage of Scholarship and Sciences in Context – Francesca Schironi

Chapter 2: How (not?) to Talk to Monarchs: The Case of the Epicurean Diogenes of Seleucia – Clive Chandler

Chapter 3: A Disillusioned Intellectual: Timagenes of Alexandria – Livia Capponi

Chapter 4: Reassessing Ovid’s Image of Tiberius and his Principate – Sanjaya Thakur

Chapter 5: Entangled Imperial Identities: Citizen, Subject, and Mentor in Plutarch’s Aratus – Mallory Monaco Caterine

Chapter 6: The Misleading Representations of Dion as Philosopher-General in Plutarch’s Life – Richard Evans

Chapter 7: Magister Domino: Intellectual and Pedagogical Power in Fronto’s Correspondence – Noelle Zeiner-Carmichael

Chapter 8: Marcus Aurelius, Greek Poets, and Greek Sophists: Friends or Foes? – Ewen Bowie

Chapter 9: Entertainers, Persuaders, Adversaries: Interactions of Sophists and Rulers in Philostratus’ Lives of Sophists – Katarzyna Jażdżewska

Chapter 10: Lucian on Roman Officials – Heinz-Günther Nesselrath

Chapter 11: How to Flatter an Imperial Mistress: The Image of Panthea in Lucian’s Imagines – Balbina Bäbler

Chapter 12: Speaking Truth to Power: Julian, the Cynics, and the Ethiopian Gymnosophists of Heliodorus – John Hilton


About the Editor

Philip R. Bosman (University of Stellenbosch, South Africa) specialises in intellectual history, Hellenistic philosophy and Greek literature of the imperial age. He has published articles and edited volumes on a range of topics related to Greco-Roman antiquity. His monograph Conscience in Philo and Paul: A Conceptual History of the Synoida Word Group was published in 2003.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HISTORY / General