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Caesar's Calendar: Ancient Time and the Beginnings of History

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Caesar's Calendar: Ancient Time and the Beginnings of History Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The ancient Romans changed more than the map of the world when they conquered so much of it; they altered the way historical time itself is marked and understood. In this brilliant, erudite, and exhilarating book Denis Feeney investigates time and its contours as described by the ancient Romans, first as Rome positioned itself in relation to Greece and then as it exerted its influence as a major world power. Feeney welcomes the reader into a world where time was movable and changeable and where simply ascertaining a date required a complex and often contentious cultural narrative. In a style that is lucid, fluent, and graceful, he investigates the pertinent systems, including the Roman calendar (which is still our calendar) and its near perfect method of capturing the progress of natural time; the annual rhythm of consular government; the plotting of sacred time onto sacred space; the forging of chronological links to the past; and, above all, the experience of empire, by which the Romans meshed the city states concept of time with those of the foreigners they encountered to establish a new worldwide web of time. Because this web of time was Greek before the Romans transformed it, the book is also a remarkable study in the cross-cultural interaction between the Greek and Roman worlds.

Feeneys skillful deployment of specialist material is engaging and accessible and ranges from details of the time schemes used by Greeks and Romans to accommodate the Romans unprecedented rise to world dominance to an edifying discussion of the fixed axis of B.C./A.D., or B.C.E./C.E., and the supposedly objective “dates” implied. He closely examines the most important of the ancient worlds time divisions, that between myth and history, and concludes by demonstrating the impact of the reformed calendar on the way the Romans conceived of times recurrence. Feeneys achievement is nothing less than the reconstruction of the Roman conception of time, which has the additional effect of transforming the way the way the reader inhabits and experiences time.

Synopsis:

"Among the many great strengths of Feeney's Caesar's Calendar are the ease and elegance with which the author makes an enormous amount of specialized material accessible to a wide audience and engages strikingly with ancient and modern science and non-classical cultural studies as well as with current trends in classical scholarship."—Donald Mastronarde, author of Euripides: Medea

"Extraordinarily ambitious and brilliantly realized."—Ellen Oliensis, author of Horace and the Rhetoric of Authority

About the Author

Denis Feeney is Giger Professor of Latin at Princeton University and was the 2004 Sather Lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley. His books include Literature and Religion at Rome: Cultures, Contexts, and Beliefs (1998) and The Gods in Epic: Poets and Critics of the Classical Tradition (1991).

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations

Preface

Introduction

1. Synchronizing Times I: Greece and Rome

2. Synchronizing Times II: West and East, Sicily and the Orient

3. Transitions from Myth into History I: The Foundations of the City

4. Transitions from Myth into History II: Ages of Gold and Iron

5. Years, Months, and Days I: Eras and Anniversaries

6. Years, Months, and Days II: The Grids of the Fasti

Epilogue

Notes

Bibliography

General Index

Index Locorum

Product Details

ISBN:
9780520251199
Subtitle:
Ancient Time and the Beginnings of History
Author:
Feeney, Denis
Author:
Feeney, D. C.
Publisher:
University of California Press
Subject:
City and town life
Subject:
Ancient - Rome
Subject:
Time
Subject:
History
Subject:
Rome Social life and customs.
Subject:
Synchronization
Subject:
Ancient - General
Subject:
World History-Ancient Near East
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Cloth
Series:
Sather Classical Lectures
Series Volume:
65
Publication Date:
20070604
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
Professional and scholarly
Language:
English
Illustrations:
12 b/w photographs
Pages:
386
Dimensions:
9 x 6 x 1 in 1.03 lb

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Geography » General
History and Social Science » Western Civilization » Ancient Rome
History and Social Science » World History » Ancient Near East
Reference » Science Reference » General
Science and Mathematics » History of Science » General
Science and Mathematics » Physics » General

Caesar's Calendar: Ancient Time and the Beginnings of History Sale Hardcover
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$12.50 In Stock
Product details 386 pages University of California Press - English 9780520251199 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
"Among the many great strengths of Feeney's Caesar's Calendar are the ease and elegance with which the author makes an enormous amount of specialized material accessible to a wide audience and engages strikingly with ancient and modern science and non-classical cultural studies as well as with current trends in classical scholarship."—Donald Mastronarde, author of Euripides: Medea

"Extraordinarily ambitious and brilliantly realized."—Ellen Oliensis, author of Horace and the Rhetoric of Authority

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