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453Pliny The Elder #1

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  • James Mathews
    Aug 8, 2013
      >>>> Pliny The Elder #1 <<<<

      Pliny the Elder was born in Cisalpine Gaul, 23 AD.  When still a youth he moved to Rome, and studied under the grammarian Apion.  From his twenty-third to his twenty-ninth year he served in the army, mostly in Germany.  Nero made him a procurator in Nearer Spain, and later he enjoyed an intimate friendship with Vespasian as a result of his history of the “Wars in Germany.”

      He was of the most energetic habits, beginning study in winter at midnight, attending Vespasian before daylight, looking to duties of his office in the morning, after a light luncheon making notes from some book a slave read to him, then after a cold bath and a nap, taking up his work again until the evening meal.  He always rode in a litter because while riding in this way he could still be reading.  He wrote many books but the only ones that have come down to us are those of his “Natural History,” really an encyclopedia of the knowledge of the time.  As it is a compendium we cannot judge from it of his ability as an original thinker; we know, however, that he lost his life in 79 AD while attempting to examine more closely the eruption of Vesuvius.

      To follow are parts of his encyclopedia showing important conceptions of Graeco-Roman science.

      To be continued;

      --Oliver J. Thatcher (Ed. In Chief), “Library Of Original Sources, Vol. III, The Roman World, University Research Extension Co., Milwaukee, Wis., 1907

      Respectfully Submitted;

      Marcus Audens