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22.777 Keywords • 48.561 Synonyms • 5.298 Translations • 7.910 Pronunciations • 151.047 Cross-references

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Tacitus

The Roman senator and historian Publius Cornelius Tacitus (55-120) held the highest political office among several emperors. From the year 88 he was praetor, from 97 consul and from 112 governor of the province of Asia. He was considered one of the most important orators of his time; his rhetoric was stylistically oriented Cicero (Curiously, Tacitus means "the silent one"). Tacitus subscribed to the maxim "sine ira et studio" (Latin "without anger and eagerness" = nobody praise too much and nobody hate). It should be noted, however, that he often did not comply with this principle and sided with it. He wrote a comprehensive, cultural-historical work, but dared only after the death of the dictatorial emperor Domitian (51-96) to publish his writings. For he basically rejected the monarchy and repeatedly lamented the loss of senatorial freedom.

Tacitus statue in front of the parliament in Vienna (Austria) and page from the annals

The work "Agricola" is a digression about Britain and "Germania" a description of the landscape and inhabitants of Germania. In the second he reports on the drinking habits of the Germanic tribes along the Rhine and mentions that viticulture is unknown there. His most important works were "Dialogus" (causes of the decay of eloquence), "Historiae" (time of the Flavian) and "Annales" (time from Augustus death to Domitian), in which he in a disillusioned and rather pessimistic manner a psychological history of the rulers this time draws. In the "Annales" he reports of one Carthaginian Wine from dried grapes.

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