Roman Nature: The Thought of Pliny the Elder

Hardcover | April 1, 1995

byMary Beagon

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Pliny's Natural History has too often been regarded as simply a quarry for quaint stories - a view which has tended to overshadow its overall structure and purpose. Dr Beagon redresses the balance and illuminates the Natural History as the work of an author with an identifiable mode ofthinking and a coherent attitude towards his clearly-stated theme, Nature.Taking its cue from Pliny, the book examines his cosmology and in particular his portrayal of the relationship between Nature and the creation he considered her greatest, Man. Author and work are also placed in their wider literary and historical context. Pliny himself emerges no longer as afaceless compiler, but as a character with a valuable contribution to make to an understanding of intellectual attitudes in the first century AD. A more typical Roman than most of the intellectual authors studied today, he can offer a much more accurate picture of the Roman in his `natural'setting.

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From Our Editors

Pliny's Natural History has too often been regarded as simply a quarry for quaint stories--a view which has tended to overshadow its overall structure and purpose. In this book, Dr. Beagon redresses the balance and illuminates the Natural History as the work of an author with an identifiable mode of thinking and a coherent attitude tow...

From the Publisher

Pliny's Natural History has too often been regarded as simply a quarry for quaint stories - a view which has tended to overshadow its overall structure and purpose. Dr Beagon redresses the balance and illuminates the Natural History as the work of an author with an identifiable mode ofthinking and a coherent attitude towards his clearl...

From the Jacket

Pliny's Natural History has too often been regarded as simply a quarry for quaint stories--a view which has tended to overshadow its overall structure and purpose. In this book, Dr. Beagon redresses the balance and illuminates the Natural History as the work of an author with an identifiable mode of thinking and a coherent attitude tow...

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:270 pages, 8.5 × 5.43 × 0.79 inPublished:April 1, 1995Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198147260

ISBN - 13:9780198147268

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From Our Editors

Pliny's Natural History has too often been regarded as simply a quarry for quaint stories--a view which has tended to overshadow its overall structure and purpose. In this book, Dr. Beagon redresses the balance and illuminates the Natural History as the work of an author with an identifiable mode of thinking and a coherent attitude towards his clearly-stated theme, Nature. Taking its cue from Pliny, the book examines his cosmology and in particular his portrayal of the relationship between nature and the creation he considered her greatest, Man. Author and work are also placed in their wider literary and historical context. Pliny himself emerges no longer as a faceless compiler but as a character with a valuable contribution to make to an understanding of intellectual attitudes in the first century AD. A more typical Roman than most of the intellectual authors studied today, he can offer a much more accurate picture of the Roman in his natural setting.

Editorial Reviews

`Much of her success is due to the clear arrangement of her thoughts into self-contained units, each dealing with a different relationship between man and the natural world ... The combination of thorough scholarship and interesting ideas has made accessible a work whose sheer scale can bedaunting. B.'s bibliography is varied and excellent, and the book is easy to refer to ... It represents an important elucidation of a piece of intellectual history, fully supported by a strongly text-based approach.'Journal of Hellenic Studies