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Mea Roma Martial

Mea Roma By Martial

Mea Roma by Martial

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This `sampling' covers some of the usual suspects, epigrams, verse tags, scurrilous and otherwise, but it also includes a number of poems from the Liber Spectaculorum, the Book of Spectacles, devoted to poems on the Games at the Colosseum and, often, in praise of Caesar.

Mea Roma Summary

Mea Roma: A Meditative Sampling from M. Valerius Martialis by Martial

"My project started with a "dissenting" translation of Martial's Book of the Spectacles. I use that term, not because I'm adapting or appropriating the text, but because the Spectacles sequence has a history of being dismissed as sub-par, early work commemorating the opening of the Colosseum. Current scholars, including Kathleen Coleman who's made the sequence somewhat of a specialty, increasingly seem to be challenging that dismissive view. Coleman also considers the dating purely speculative. I'm not attempting to join a technical and arcane historical debate. But strictly from a literary standpoint, her views on the dating free a poetic translator to exploit the same irony, double-entendre and polyvalence that imbues the greater Martial canon. The Spectacles' extended theme - the animal fights, blood sports and execution entertainments of the Arena - is, as far as I know, unique in Classical poetry. Even the over-the-top adulation of the un-named, games-presiding "Caesar" can take on its own cynical undertone when read in the context of Martial's "hare and lion" relationship with the self-styled Dominus et Deus Emperor Domitian." -Art Beck

About Martial

Marcus Valerius Martialis (known in English as Martial) (ca. 40 AD - ca. 103 AD) was a Roman poet born in what is now Spain, and best known for his twelve books of Epigrams, published in Rome between AD 86 and 103, during the reigns of the emperors Domitian, Nerva and Trajan. In these short, witty poems he satirises city life and the scandalous activities of his acquaintances. He wrote over 1,500 epigrams, of which over 1,200 are in elegiac couplets. Martial is regarded as the creator of the modern epigram.

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Mea Roma: A Meditative Sampling from M. Valerius Martialis by Martial
Shearsman Books
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