Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: addendum, Tacitus as hearsay-dependent

Expand Messages
  • Jeffrey B. Gibson
    There s one other little item of tremendous significance I forgot to add to my last post on whether Tertullian s sword language is rooted in the concept of
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 1, 1999
    • 0 Attachment
      There's one other  "little" item of tremendous significance I forgot to add to my last post on whether Tertullian's sword language is rooted in the concept of ius gladii --- Tertullian was trained (probably in Carthage),  and originally made his living in Rome,  as a lawyer. When this observation is added to the fact that Tertullian's expression about "assailing with the imperial sword" appears  not only in an Apologia,  but an Apologia aimed at Roman officials,  then the case that this expression is technical is about as iron clad as any case can be. What more evidence does one need?

      Yours,

      Jeffrey

      Ian Hutchesson wrote:

      > Jeffrey Gibson wrote:
      >
      > >As to the expulsion--even if known by Tertullian as having been carried
      > >out by armed soldiers threatening or even actually using swords--as
      > >sufficient motivation of Tertulliam's language in Apology Bk 5, I find
      > >your view impossible in light of some digging I did in the _Oxford
      > >Classical Dictionary_ and in  A.N. Sherwin White's _Roman Law and Roman
      > >Society in the NT_ on Roman punishment. It becomes clear in the light of
      > >the use of "assail" and "imperial sword", that sword language of
      > >Tertullian is grounded in the concept, and the carrying out of, the the
      > >*ius gladii*, which is the power of the emperor or one of those
      > >delegated with the imperium for *execution* and the exercise and
      > >infliction of capital punishment. Phrases like "assailing with the
      > >imperial sword" were *never* used of, or confused with, the punishment
      > >of expulsion even if the urban cohorts, the praetorian guard, or the
      > >vilgiles who *might* be (but were not always) enlisted to carry out an
      > >edict of expulsion did so by wielding swords.
      >
      > If we grant the significance of the phrase as you give it, what makes you
      > think that Tertullian used it specifically in a "technical" manner and not
      > as a pat phrase?
      >

      What gives the game away here is not only the term "sword" which when used with
      the verb "assail" means "to execute" , but the adjective "imperial". Thus the
      sword was the particular one used by the emperor (or one bearing the imeperium)
      against those who had been tried and convicted of capital offenses. Moreover,
      even when a phrase becomes "pat", it still is action specific. Think of the
      "pat" expression "give him the chair". When uttered withing the context of a
      discussion about crime and criminals, it means "execute the guy".  The context
      of Tertullian's "pat" phrase is types of official action various Roman emperors
      aimed at Christians.  So again "to assail with the imperial sword" means to
      "employ the state judicial power of capital punishment".

      Yours,

      Jeffrey

      --
      Jeffrey B. Gibson
      7423 N. Sheridan Road #2A
      Chicago, Illinois 60626
      e-mail jgibson000@...


       
       

      --
      Jeffrey B. Gibson
      7423 N. Sheridan Road #2A
      Chicago, Illinois 60626
      e-mail jgibson000@...
       

    Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.