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Which One is the Historian? A Neglected Problem in the Study of Roman Historiography

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Chapter Summary

While some Roman historians were well-known public figures, many others were persons about whom little or nothing is known other than that they wrote history. Identifying such authors with independently documented persons is fraught with difficulties that have been seriously underestimated in modern scholarship. One such case is that of the historian Licinius Macer—universally assumed to be identical with the man of that name who agitated for the restoration of the tribunes’ powers in 73 bc (Sallust, Hist. III.48 M). The contention here is that this identification is not supported by the evidence, which actually suggests that the historian was a different person altogether.



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