Greek Culture Essay

1858 Words 8 Pages
In this essay we shall discuss the Romans’ reaction to Greek culture whilst comparing their relations with other cultures. Therefore, it shall be necessary to consult both ancient and modern scholarship. In order to understand the Roman attitude to the Greeks we need to explore the various things which Rome absorbed from the Greeks into its own culture. Amongst these are the conflation of traditional Roman deities with their Greek counterparts, inspirations for literature and the social practices which Rome would also appropriate.
Gruen points out that in the Augustan age it was believed that, “… the city derived from a settlement of Roman refugees, adversaries of the Greeks…The progeny of Aeneas ultimately effected the founding of Rome- via
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Perhaps this came from a conception that the Greeks, boasting the likes of Homer, Aeschylus, Thucydides, Xenophon and Sokrates, were an erudite people. For this reason we can infer that the Romans did not think of the Greeks as barbarians. Moreover, it is believed that the first work of Latin literature was a translation of the Odyssey. Again, this shows the debt that the Romans owed to Greek culture which may explain why they did not consider Greeks, although at times a pugnacious people; especially when fighting over land à la the Battle of the Champions, to be as barbarous as other Mediterranean …show more content…
This is interesting as it indicates a fear that the Greek practice of pederasty would be adopted by Romans thus corrupting them. Furthermore, this seems to be in contrast with many of the other features of Greek culture which the Romans did adopt. There are various examples of Greek culture such as Stoicism which many members of the Senate adhered to. Long asserts that there were men in the Roman Empire who claimed to be Cynics, derived from the practices of Diogenes, Stoics and

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