Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-8bbf57454-zdbn7 Total loading time: 0.358 Render date: 2022-01-26T12:27:52.835Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": true, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true, "newEcommerce": true, "newUsageEvents": true }

10 - ‘Creating’ Cato in Early Seventeenth-Century England

from Imitation and Arrangement

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 March 2014

Freyja Cox Jensen
Affiliation:
University of Exeter
Rebecca Herissone
Affiliation:
Head of Music and Senior Lecturer in Musicology at the University of Manchester
Alan Howard
Affiliation:
Lecturer in Music at the University of East Anglia
Get access

Summary

When Richard Brathwaite compiled his The Scholler's Medley of 1614, he justified his use of fragmentary portions of Roman history by claiming that they were of the utmost utility to his readers. In recording and scrutinizing the lives of significant individuals, Brathwaite wrote, history ‘truly demonstrates the life of the person, characters his vertues, or vices’. History, then, in the minds of most seventeenth-century gentlemen, recorded the deeds of the great, the good and the downright wicked in order that they might be preserved for posterity and prove useful in later times:

Many worthy Statists haue desired, and in themselues no lesse deserued … to haue their memorable acts recorded: as Cicero his withstanding Catyline, Cato his opposing Caesar.

This essay explores how the ‘memorable acts’ of Cato of Utica were received, reinterpreted and reconstructed in early seventeenth-century England. Marcus Porcius Cato the Younger was an ardent opponent of unconstitutional rule at Rome during the last days of the Republic; the strength of his convictions led him to conclude that death was preferable to continued existence under the tyranny of Julius Caesar. It was this very integrity that rendered him a problematic historical figure in the early modern context, an individual upon whom competing philosophies and ideologies converged. Cato's actions were enshrined in historical fact in the ancient sources, and could not be altered. But early modern retellings of the story of Cato placed different emphases upon his deeds, and constructed very individualized characters for this Stoic stalwart.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Boydell & Brewer
Print publication year: 2013

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Send book to Kindle

To send this book to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Send book to Dropbox

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Send book to Google Drive

To send content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×