Horatius

Symposion

Member
Another option would be to read Caesar's De Bello Civili. It can be a bit more complicated than De Bello Gallico, but it can be interesting to study because there's a lot of ways Caesar is kind of twisting the truth or presenting things in a certain way.
I am much interested in the Roman civil war between Caesar and Pompeius. At the moment I am thinking about either reading Aeneis or not. It really depends if it is too difficult for me.
 

Cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
You are right in that I did not like Cicero and would rather read Vergilius now. Is he too difficult for me at the moment?
I wouldn't think so. Ovids poems in elegiac couplets are easier though.
If you prefer history, you could always try Sallust. I much prefer his writing to Caesar.
 

AoM

nulli numeri
Yes, that book's good too (very propaganda-ish in favor of Rome), but I just prefer some of the other ones. But book 6 is definitely a popular one as well. To me, it seemed like the first 6 books were more self-contained episodes (i.e. each book can theoretically be read on its own and tell a cohesive unit of the story), whereas books 7-12 are more connected and tell the long story of the war that ensues when Aeneas arrives in Italy.
What did you find propaganda-ish? The only one that really sticks out to me is 789-805.
 

Matthaeus

Vemortuicida strenuus
How can Cicero be boring?! o_O
I guess de gustibus eqs...
 

Dantius

Homo Sapiens
Staff member
What did you find propaganda-ish? The only one that really sticks out to me is 789-805.
Not necessarily "propaganda" exactly I suppose but just seeming very much in favor of Rome and Augustus as emperor.
 

AoM

nulli numeri
Not necessarily "propaganda" exactly I suppose but just seeming very much in favor of Rome and Augustus as emperor.
Well, of course. It's Rome's founding myth lol. I'd say patriotism more than propaganda.

Though the very ending of the epic. Now that's a statement on Rome and its power.
 

Symposion

Member
Would it be better for me at this point to read Germania by Tacitus from 98 or Aeneis by Vergilius in Classical Latin first?
 

Dantius

Homo Sapiens
Staff member
I'd say definitely the Aeneid. If you're struggling with Cicero, Tacitus is quite a bit harder than Cicero, in my opinion, because there's a ton of implied words and weird constructions.
 

Symposion

Member
Thank you for your information Dantius. I have now decided to read Liber VI of Aeneis by Vergilius. This as here is included the famous predestiny of the Roman people. Is it not so?
 

AoM

nulli numeri
ita vero.
 

Dantius

Homo Sapiens
Staff member
Indeed, that's not surprising, because Vergil will use a lot of poetic vocabulary and a lot of words that aren't common in Caesar. However you shouldn't let that deter you because most authors have a more complex vocabulary than Caesar, so you'll have to learn these words eventually. What I would recommend is reading it once going through looking up all the words, and then rereading it once you're done to get the flow and poetic devices and the story.
 

Symposion

Member
I want to read the epic because it is so famous. I am also interested about the time of Augustus. I wonder if the unfamiliar classical words used in the Aeneis are important for me who primarily want to read texts from the Middle Ages.
 

Cinefactus

Censor
Staff member
His vocab is not infinite. Once you get used to his style and word choice you can read great slabs at a time. The Aeneid was used for teaching in the middle ages, so I would not be surprised if you found words and style copied from Vergil in the texts you are interested in.
 
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