Political Autobiographies and Memoirs in Antiquity

A Brill Companion


Ancient autobiography has been the object of several studies and meetings. However, these have focused chiefly on the philosophical and literary aspects. This book aims to examine the development of political autobiography and memoirs in the Greek and Roman world, stressing, instead, the relation of a single work with the traditions of the genre and also the influence of the respective aims of the authors on the composition of autobiographies. At times these works were written as a means of propaganda in a political struggle, or to defend a past action, and often to furnish material to historians. Nonetheless, they still preserve the personal viewpoint and voice of the protagonists in all their vividness, even if distorted by the aim of defending their record. Political Autobiographies and Memoirs in Antiquity will be a highly valuable and useful reference tool for both scholars and students of Greek and Roman history and literature.

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Gabriele Marasco is Professor of Roman History at Università della Tuscia. He published many books and studies on Hellenistic and Roman History, from a Commentary on Plutarch’s Agis and Cleomenes (Rome, 1981) to a book on Philostorgius (Rome, 2005). For Brill he edited Greek and Roman Historiography in Late Antiquity (2003).

Contributors include: Vivienne Grey, Gabriele Marasco, Cinzia Bearzot, José Mª Candau Morón, W. Jeffrey Tatum, Marc Mayer, Joseph Geiger, Ronald Thomas Ridley, Pere Villalba, Frederick Brenk & Richard Westall, Hartmut Leppin.
"This is a welcome volume on an important topic. A series of recent works on autobiography has reminded us of the significance of this genre of ancient literature, and has carried the debate forward from Misch and Momigliano.1 This volume is carefully curated to offer an overview of the subject from the Greek period to late antiquity, and is in effect a handbook on the subject, and better than anything else in existence." Christopher Smith in BMCR, 23.04.2012

"eine höchst nützliche Sammlung von Arbeiten zu den verschiedensten Werken, in denen politische Handlungsträger über ihr eigenes Handeln
schrieben. (...) Es ist ein sehr gutes Buch von Spezialisten über ein wenig beachtetes Thema, das für alle Interessierten, auch die Spezialisten, wichtig sein wird.
" Stefan Schorn in Historischen Zeitschrift 298/1, pp. 133-134
All those interested in Greek history, Roman history, history of Late Antiquity, Greek literature, Latin literature, classical philology, history of anciient philosophy.
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