History Notes! Society and Culture During the Principate

(Short and sweet history TL;DR! Previous–>The Principate)

"Why don't you go read a book, WOMAN."

“Why don’t you go read a book, WOMAN.”

 

 A) Elite  Men: “Paideia” (Greek word for education); Read Greek works.

  • Greek Rhetoric, the art of crafting an argument. Hey-o, Aristotle!

-Elite men took up the role of Patron of someone who was of lesser status.

-They would help them out, obligated, argue on behalf of.

  • Negotium (work)-  Job of being a Patron. Expected of all Elite Men, all men should be useful.
  • Otium (Leisure; Not at work;)- Life of leisure, doing what you want.

-LOL Vomitorium? Nah, that’s just an amphitheatre passage, bro.

 

B) Elite Women: Educated, almost as well as a man.

  • Never citizens, never adults. (Britany Spears song insert) Legal minor. Cannot make legal decisions on their own.

-Always needed a legal guardian. (Typically husband or father)

-When they could CHOOSE their guardian, however, NEVER the husband or father. Someone with less authority, obviously.

  • “Fiction” of not being in charge but, ladies were sooooo in control of their guardians. The neck moves the head, afterall.
  • Uncommon not to be married.

-Had responsibility to discuss politics with their husband. Give advice.

-Manipulate the system like we doooo, naturally.

 

C) Lower Class: Clients

  • Soldiers. People would cut off their toes to avoid this.
  • Merchants. Oh how the tides have turned.
  • Freedmen (Former Slaves): Always at bottom of social status because reasons.

 

D) Culture:

  • Literature: Virgil, anything before Octavian. Homer, Greek philosophy.
  • Art: Fresco (Wall paintings), Hellenistic style (anatomically correct)
  • Science: High understanding. Incredible architecture. Indoor plumbing. (Take that, Middle Ages)
  • Medicine: Galen (Physician in gladiatorial arena). Dissection, stitching. Generally decent understanding of the human body and the foundation of medical knowledge but then there was…

-Humoral Theory; Four Fluids: Blood (Heat), Phlgem (Cold), Green Bile, Black Bile

  • Geocentric: Ptolemy.
  • Philosophy and Religion: Stoicism.
  • Mystery Religions: Because why the hell not? Concerned with Salvation. Agape= “Unconditional Love”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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