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Roman Education

  • J. B. Poynton

Extract

The importance which the Romans attached to the family is well known, and it is natural enough that in early times the Roman boy received his only education at home. Plutarch to be sure would have us believe that Romulus and Remus went to school at Gabii, but his story is not to be taken seriously: it is simply an attempt to present these legendary characters as human beings, living the sort of life with which the reader himself was familiar. As we approach history we find several mentions of schools in Livy: the master of Falerii has won eternal infamy by delivering his pupils as hostages to the Roman general, an act with which many of his profession have sometimes felt a certain ambiguous sympathy. But it is idle to speculate on the truth of such tales: we may take the statement of Pliny (Ep. viii. 14) suus cuique parens pro magistro as substantially correct for the time before the First Punic War.

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page 3 note 1 The translation is that given by Gwynn, Roman Education.

page 5 note 1 Rich, Dictionary of Antiquities.

page 6 note 1 Horace, Ars Poetica, 326.

page 7 note 1 Juv. vii. 233.

page 7 note 2 Gwynn, Roman Education.

page 8 note 1 Hor. Sat. i. 6. 72.

page 9 note 1 Mart. v. 84.

page 9 note 2 Pers. iii. 44.

Roman Education

  • J. B. Poynton

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