Goldene Latinität

Golden Latin is a period of Latin literature. Originally, the term was used to describe all the Latin writings that arose until the death of the poet Ovid (17 AD). Nowadays, this time is estimated to be between 81% Until 17 AD. If this epoch is described as golden, it is meant that Latin literature had its linguistic climax, which was expressed in prose, epic, lyric, and in many elegies, as well as in historiography. The following epoch, which is, in any case, the assumption, characterized by coarser content and a lower level of speech, is called Silver Latinity. Behind this assumption is a decadence (see Fin de Siècle).

The term raises the linguistic skills of the Latin poets between 81. v. Chr. And 17. n. Chr. To the ideal and thus mediated the picture that all later works no longer reach this condition. The decade is this notion, since all changes and deviations which do not correspond to this ideal are interpreted as inferior and therefore a decline.

Cicero, Caesar, Sallust, Livius, Virgil, and Horace and Ovid (43 BC-AD) are considered important authors of this period. According to Quintilian, a Roman teacher of rhetoric, Cicero was regarded as the measure of all things in Latin prose. This assumption is carried out by Quintilian in his principal institution, oratoria, which is later underlined by Petrarca. Cicero’s counterpart in poetry is Vergil (70 BC-19 BC), whose language and stylistic certainty is long regarded as a lyrical perfection.

Silver and Golden Latinity as a time beam
The above example shows important representatives of the Silver as well as Golden Latin, and also highlights the key figures for the year. It is important, however, that these dates appear to be fluid. The end of the Golden Latin is usually marked with the death of Ovid, while the end of the Silver Latin is usually tied to the death of Trajan’s 117th AD.

The Silver Latin then forms the transition to the literary period of Late Antiquity, which is to be found between the 3rd and 6th centuries. In the following centuries, Latin literature moved farther and farther away from the Ciceronian style, and thus from the ideal of the Golden Latin, although this evaluation of quality is, of course, highly disputed.

Golden Latin: Prose and poetry
Lyric (typical are Alkaean / sapphic stanzas, cf. Ode)
Catulli: Carmina 1-60
Horace: Odes, Carmen saeculare, epodes
Epic (typical are hexameters and large circumference)
Virgil: Aeneis (Roman counterpart to the Iliad and Odyssey of Homer), Georgica (teaching post)
Lucrez: De Rerum Natura (teaching post, reminiscent of Hesiod’s theogony)
Ovid: Metamorphoses (competition to Vergil’s Aeneis), Ars Amatoria (ironic doctrine)
Catull: Carmen 64 (Epyllion, Kleinepos)
Bucolik (Hirendichticht, typical is the daktylische Versmaß)
Virgil: Eclogues
Epigrams (mostly elegiac distributions)
Catull: Carmina 69-116
Horace: Satiren, Epistula (also art letter)
Varro: Satiren
Elegy / Elegy poet
Catullus: Carmina 1-60 (including some elegiac Lesbiocese)
Gallus: Loveselegia at Lycoris
Ovid: Amores, Heroides
Sulpicia the Elder

Cicero (His works are considered directional, selection)
Speeches: In Catilinam, In Verrem, Pro Milone, Pro Roscio Comodeo, Pro Sexto Roscio
Philosophy: De Re Publica, De Officiis, “De natura deorum”
State / Politics: De re publica
Rhetorical writings: De oratore, Orator
Letters: ad Familiares, ad Brutum, ad Quintum Fratrem, ad Atticum
Historical (history, wars, biographies, cf. Annalen)
Nepos: De Viris Illustribus
Caesar: De Bello Gallico, De Bello Civili
Sallust: De Coniuratione Catilinae, Bellum Iugurthinum
Livy: From Urbe Condita
Technical literature (essays)
Caesar: De Analogia (Linguistics)
Hyginus: De Astronomia
Varro: De Lingua Latina (language science), De Re Rustica (agriculture)
Vitruvius: De Architectura

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