Manilius and His Intellectual Background


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This is the first English-language monograph on Marcus Manilius, a Roman poet of the first century AD, whose Astronomica is our earliest extant comprehensive treatment of astrology. Katharina Volk brings Manilius and his world alive for modern readers by exploring the manifold intellectual traditions that have gone into shaping the Astronomica: ancient astronomy and cosmology, the history and practice of astrology, the historical and political situation at the poem’s composition, the poetic and generic conventions that inform it, and the philosophical underpinnings of Manilius’ world-view. What emerges is a panoroma of the cultural imagination of the Early Empire, a fascinating picture of the ways in which educated Greeks and Romans were accustomed to think and speak about the cosmos and man’s place in it.

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