A philosophical romance by Pater, published 1885.
Pater describes the boyhood, education, and young manhood of Marius, a serious young Roman imbued with a ‘morbid religious idealism’. With his friend Flavian he discovers the ‘jewelled’ delights of Apuleius, in particular of the story of Cupid and Psyche, then progresses through the philosophies of Heraclitus, Aristippus, and Marcus Aurelius to Christianity. He dies more or less a martyr to save a Christian friend. The work is a vehicle for Pater's own reflections on pagan and Christian art and religion.
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Walter Pater (1839—1894) author and aesthete