The Consequences of the Triumvirate: The View of Asinius Pollio

Edited by Luciano Canfora and Julian Stringer

in Julius Caesar

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print February 2007 | ISBN: 9780748619368
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748670734 | DOI:
The Consequences of the Triumvirate: The View of Asinius Pollio

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The causal connection between the triumvirate and the civil war is stated in the opening lines of an ode to Asinius Pollio, in which the sometime republican Horace salutes the birth and development of Asinius' work on the civil war. To Horace, many years after the event, the battle of Philippi remained the moment at which ‘Valour's self was beaten down’ (cum fracta virtus). This view, not unlike that of Cremutius, but clearly set in a poem that views everything with disenchantment, appears in a book that opens with a somewhat nervous announcement of Pollio's forthcoming historical work. It is the ode of ‘a shield ingloriously abandoned’, a nostalgic ode looking back on a politically critical moment.

Keywords: triumvirate; Asinius Pollio; civil war; Horace; battle of Philippi

Chapter.  2700 words. 

Subjects: Greek and Roman Archaeology

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