A eulogy is a speech or writing in praise of a person or thing one who died or retired or as a term of endearment. Eulogies may be given as part of funeral services. In the US, they take place in a funeral home after a wake. In the US, some denominations either discourage or do not permit eulogies at services to maintain respect for traditions. Eulogies can praise people who are still alive; this takes place on special occasions like birthdays, office parties, retirement celebrations, etc. Eulogies should not be confused with elegies. Catholic priests are prohibited by the rubrics of the Mass from presenting a eulogy for the deceased in place of a homily during a funeral Mass; the modern use of the word eulogy was first documented in the 15th century and came from the Medieval Latin term eulogium. Eulogium at that time has since turned into the shorter eulogy of today. Eulogies are delivered by a family member or a close family friend in the case of a dead person. For a living eulogy given in such cases as a retirement, a senior colleague could deliver it.
On occasions, eulogies are given to those who are ill or elderly in order to express words of love and gratitude before they die. Eulogies are not limited to people, however. A successful eulogy may provide comfort or inspiration as well as establish a connection to the person whom the eulogy is in behalf of; the following section will explore some well-known eulogies. President Ronald Reagan’s eulogy for the Challenger space shuttle crew: I know it is hard to understand, but sometimes painful things like this happen. It's all part of the process of discovery. It's all part of expanding man's horizons; the future doesn’t belong to the fainthearted. The Challenger crew was pulling us into the future, we’ll continue to follow them. Charles Spencer’s eulogy for his sister, Princess Diana: Diana was the essence of compassion, of duty, of style, of beauty. All over the world she was a symbol of selfless humanity, a standard-bearer for the rights of the downtrodden, a British girl who transcended nationality, someone with a natural nobility, classless, who proved in the last year that she needed no royal title to continue to generate her particular brand of magic.
Jawaharlal Nehru’s eulogy for Mahatma Gandhi: The first thing to remember now is that no one of us dare misbehave because we’re angry. We have to behave like strong and determined people, determined to face all the perils that surround us, determined to carry out the mandate that our great teacher and our great leader had given us, remembering always that if, as I believe, his spirit looks upon us and sees you, nothing would displease his soul so much as to see that we have indulged in any small behavior or any violence. So we must not do that, but that does not mean that we should be weak, but rather that we should in strength and in unity face all the troubles and difficulties and conflicts must be ended in the face of this great disaster. A great disaster is a symbol to us to remember all the big things of life and forget the small things, of which we have thought too much. Ted Kennedy's eulogy for his brother Robert F. Kennedy: My brother need not be idealized, or enlarged in death beyond what he was in life.
Those of us who loved him and who take him to his rest today, pray that what he was to us and what he wished for others will some day come to pass for all the world. As he said many times, in many parts of this nation, to those he touched and who sought to touch him: Some men see things as they are and say why. There are many different types of eulogies; some of them are meant to be a biography of the person’s life. The short biography is a retelling of what the individual went through in their life; this can be done to highlight major points in the deceased’s life. Another version is by telling a more personal view on, it entails retelling memories that are shared between the deceased. Memories and experiences are all things that can be included in a retelling of the personal eulogy. Consolatio Funeral oration Obituary Panegyric Requiem Types of speeches
Poetry is a form of literature that uses aesthetic and rhythmic qualities of language—such as phonaesthetics, sound symbolism, metre—to evoke meanings in addition to, or in place of, the prosaic ostensible meaning. Poetry has a long history, dating back to prehistorical times with the creation of hunting poetry in Africa, panegyric and elegiac court poetry was developed extensively throughout the history of the empires of the Nile and Volta river valleys; some of the earliest written poetry in Africa can be found among the Pyramid Texts written during the 25th century BCE, while the Epic of Sundiata is one of the most well-known examples of griot court poetry. The earliest Western Asian epic poetry, the Epic of Gilgamesh, was written in Sumerian. Early poems in the Eurasian continent evolved from folk songs such as the Chinese Shijing, or from a need to retell oral epics, as with the Sanskrit Vedas, Zoroastrian Gathas, the Homeric epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey. Ancient Greek attempts to define poetry, such as Aristotle's Poetics, focused on the uses of speech in rhetoric, drama and comedy.
Attempts concentrated on features such as repetition, verse form and rhyme, emphasized the aesthetics which distinguish poetry from more objectively informative, prosaic forms of writing. Poetry uses forms and conventions to suggest differential interpretation to words, or to evoke emotive responses. Devices such as assonance, alliteration and rhythm are sometimes used to achieve musical or incantatory effects; the use of ambiguity, symbolism and other stylistic elements of poetic diction leaves a poem open to multiple interpretations. Figures of speech such as metaphor and metonymy create a resonance between otherwise disparate images—a layering of meanings, forming connections not perceived. Kindred forms of resonance may exist, between individual verses, in their patterns of rhyme or rhythm; some poetry types are specific to particular cultures and genres and respond to characteristics of the language in which the poet writes. Readers accustomed to identifying poetry with Dante, Goethe and Rumi may think of it as written in lines based on rhyme and regular meter.
Much modern poetry reflects a critique of poetic tradition, playing with and testing, among other things, the principle of euphony itself, sometimes altogether forgoing rhyme or set rhythm. In today's globalized world, poets adapt forms and techniques from diverse cultures and languages; some scholars believe. Others, suggest that poetry did not predate writing; the oldest surviving epic poem, the Epic of Gilgamesh, comes from the 3rd millennium BCE in Sumer, was written in cuneiform script on clay tablets and on papyrus. A tablet dating to c. 2000 BCE describes an annual rite in which the king symbolically married and mated with the goddess Inanna to ensure fertility and prosperity. An example of Egyptian epic poetry is The Story of Sinuhe. Other ancient epic poetry includes the Iliad and the Odyssey. Epic poetry, including the Odyssey, the Gathas, the Indian Vedas, appears to have been composed in poetic form as an aid to memorization and oral transmission, in prehistoric and ancient societies.
Other forms of poetry developed directly from folk songs. The earliest entries in the oldest extant collection of Chinese poetry, the Shijing, were lyrics; the efforts of ancient thinkers to determine what makes poetry distinctive as a form, what distinguishes good poetry from bad, resulted in "poetics"—the study of the aesthetics of poetry. Some ancient societies, such as China's through her Shijing, developed canons of poetic works that had ritual as well as aesthetic importance. More thinkers have struggled to find a definition that could encompass formal differences as great as those between Chaucer's Canterbury Tales and Matsuo Bashō's Oku no Hosomichi, as well as differences in content spanning Tanakh religious poetry, love poetry, rap. Classical thinkers employed classification as a way to assess the quality of poetry. Notably, the existing fragments of Aristotle's Poetics describe three genres of poetry—the epic, the comic, the tragic—and develop rules to distinguish the highest-quality poetry in each genre, based on the underlying purposes of the genre.
Aestheticians identified three major genres: epic poetry, lyric poetry, dramatic poetry, treating comedy and tragedy as subgenres of dramatic poetry. Aristotle's work was influential throughout the Middle East during the Islamic Golden Age, as well as in Europe during the Renaissance. Poets and aestheticians distinguished poetry from, defined it in opposition to prose, understood as writing with a proclivity to logical explication and a linear narrative structure; this does not imply that poetry is illogical or lacks narration, but rather that poetry is an attempt to render the beautiful or sublime without the burden of engaging the logical or narrative thought process. English Romantic poet John Keats termed this escape from logic "Negative Capability"; this "romantic" approach views form as a key element of successful poetry because form is abstract and distinct from the underlying notional logic. This approach remained influential into t
The Wanderer (poem)
The Wanderer is an Old English poem preserved only in an anthology known as the Exeter Book, a manuscript dating from the late 10th century. It counts 115 lines of alliterative verse; as is the case in Anglo-Saxon verse, the composer and compiler are anonymous, within the manuscript the poem is untitled. The date of the poem is impossible to determine, but it must have been composed and written before the Exeter Book; the poem has only been found in the Exeter Book, a manuscript made at around 975, although the poem is considered to have been written earlier. The inclusion of a number of Norse-influenced words, such as the compound hrimceald, some unusual spelling forms, has encouraged others to date the poem to the late 9th or early 10th century; the metre of the poem is of four-stress lines, divided between the second and third stresses by a caesura. Each caesura is indicated in the manuscript by a subtle increase in character spacing and with full stops, but modern print editions render them in a more obvious fashion.
Like most Old English poetry, it is written in alliterative metre. It is considered an example of an Anglo-Saxon elegy; the Wanderer conveys the meditations of a solitary exile on his past happiness as a member of his lord's band of retainers, his present hardships and the values of forbearance and faith in the heavenly Lord. The warrior is identified as eardstapa translated as "wanderer", who roams the cold seas and walks "paths of exile", he remembers the days when, as a young man, he served his lord, feasted together with comrades, received precious gifts from the lord. Yet fate turned against him when he lost his lord and comrades in battle—they were defending their homeland against an attack—and he was driven into exile; some readings of the poem see the wanderer as progressing through three phases. Other readings accept the general statement that the exile does come to understand human history, his own included, in philosophical terms, but would point out that the poem has elements in common with "The Battle of Maldon", a poem about a battle in which an Anglo-Saxon troop was defeated by Viking invaders.
However, the speaker reflects upon life while spending years in exile, to some extent has gone beyond his personal sorrow. In this respect, the poem is a "wisdom poem"; the degeneration of “earthly glory” is presented as inevitable in the poem, contrasting with the theme of salvation through faith in God. The wanderer vividly describes his loneliness and yearning for the bright days past, concludes with an admonition to put faith in God, "in whom all stability dwells", it has been argued by some scholars that this admonition is a addition, as it lies at the end of a poem that some would say is otherwise secular in its concerns. Opponents of this interpretation such as I. L. Gordon have argued that because many of the words in the poem have both secular and spiritual or religious meanings, the foundation of this argument is not on firm ground; the psychological or spiritual progress of the wanderer has been described as an "act of courage of one sitting alone in meditation", who through embracing the values of Christianity seeks "a meaning beyond the temporary and transitory meaning of earthly values".
The development of critical approaches to The Wanderer corresponds to changing historical trends in European and Anglo-American philology, literary theory, historiography as a whole. Like other works in Old English, the rapid changes in the English language after the Norman Conquest meant that it would not have been understood between the twelfth and sixteenth centuries; until the early nineteenth century, the existence of the poem was unknown outside of Exeter Cathedral library. In John Josias Conybeare's 1826 compilation of Anglo Saxon poetry, The Wanderer was erroneously treated as part of the preceding poem Juliana, it was not until 1842 that it was identified as a separate work, in its first print edition, by the pioneering Anglo-Saxonist Benjamin Thorpe. Thorpe considered it to bear "considerable evidence of originality", but regretted an absence of information on its historical and mythological context, his decision to name it The Wanderer has not always been met with approval. J. R. R. Tolkien, who adopted elements of the poem into The Lord of the Rings, is typical of such dissatisfaction.
By 1926-7 Tolkien was considering the alternative titles'An Exile', or'Alone the Banished Man', by 1964-5 was arguing for'The Exile's Lament'. Despite such pressure, the poem is referred to under Thorpe's original title. A number of formal elements of the poem have been identified by critics, including the use of the "beasts of battle" motif, the ubi sunt formula, the exile theme, the ruin theme, the siþ-motif; the "beasts of battle" motif found in Anglo-Saxon heroic poetry, is here modified to include not only the standard eagle and wolf, but a "sad-faced man". It has been suggested; the ubi sunt or "where is" formula is here in the form "hƿær cƿom", the Old English phrase "where has gone". The use of this emphasises the sense of loss; the preoccupation with the siþ-motif in Anglo-Saxon literature is matched
Sir Edmund William Gosse CB was an English poet and critic. He was brought up in a small Protestant sect, the Plymouth Brethren, but broke away from that faith, his account of his childhood in the book Father and Son has been described as the first psychological biography. His friendship with the sculptor Hamo Thornycroft inspired a successful career as a historian of late-Victorian sculpture, his translations of Ibsen helped to promote that playwright in England, he encouraged the careers of W. B. Yeats and James Joyce, he lectured in English literature at Cambridge. Gosse was the son of Philip Henry Emily Bowes, his father was his mother an illustrator who published a number of books of poetry. Both were committed to a small Protestant sect, the Plymouth Brethren, his childhood was happy as they spent their summers in Devon where his father was developing the ideas which gave rise to the craze for the marine aquarium. After his mother died of breast cancer when he was eight and they moved to Devon, his life with his father became strained by his father's expectations that he should follow in his religious tradition.
Gosse was sent to a boarding school. His father married in 1860 the religious Quaker spinster Eliza Brightwen, whose brother Thomas tried to encourage Edmund to become a banker, he gave an account of his childhood in the book Father and Son, described as the first psychological biography. At the age of 18 and working in the British Museum in London, he broke away from his father's influence in a dramatic coming of age. Eliza Gosse's brother George was the husband of Eliza Elder Brightwen, a naturalist and author, whose first book was published in 1890. After Eliza Elder Brightwen's death, Edmund Gosse arranged for the publication of her two posthumous works Last Hours with Nature and Eliza Brightwen, the Life and Thoughts of a Naturalist, both edited by W. H. Chesson, the latter book with an introduction and epilogue by Gosse. Gosse started his career as assistant librarian at the British Museum from 1867 alongside the songwriter Theo Marzials, a post which Charles Kingsley helped his father obtain for him.
An early book of poetry published with a friend John Arthur Blaikie gave him an introduction to the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. Trips to Denmark and Norway in 1872–74, where he visited Hans Christian Andersen and Frederik Paludan-Müller, led to publishing success with reviews of Henrik Ibsen and Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson in the Cornhill Magazine, he was soon reviewing Scandinavian literature in a variety of publications. He became acquainted with Alfred, Lord Tennyson and friends with Robert Browning, Algernon Charles Swinburne, Thomas Hardy and Henry James. In the meantime, he published his first solo volume of poetry, On Viol and Flute and a work of criticism, Studies in the Literature of Northern Europe. Gosse and Robert Louis Stevenson first met while teenagers, after 1879, when Stevenson came to London on occasion, he would stay with Gosse and his family. In 1875 Gosse became a translator at the Board of Trade, a post which he held until 1904 and gave him time for his writing and enabled him to marry and start a family.
From 1884 to 1890, Gosse lectured in English literature at Trinity College, despite his own lack of academic qualifications. Cambridge University gave him an honorary MA in 1886, Trinity College formally admitted him as a member,'by order of the Council', in 1889, he made a successful American lecture tour in 1884 and was much in demand as a speaker and on committees as well as publishing a string of critical works as well as poetry and histories. He became, in the 1880s, one of the most important art critics dealing with sculpture with an interest spurred on by his intimate friendship with the sculptor Hamo Thornycroft. Gosse would write the first history of the renaissance of late-Victorian sculpture in 1894 in a four-part series for The Art Journal, dubbing the movement the New Sculpture. In 1904, he became the librarian of the House of Lords Library, where he exercised considerable influence till he retired in 1914, he wrote for the Sunday Times, was an expert on Thomas Gray, William Congreve, John Donne, Jeremy Taylor, Coventry Patmore.
He can take credit for introducing Henrik Ibsen's work to the British public. Gosse and William Archer collaborated in translating The Master Builder. Gosse and Archer, along with George Bernard Shaw, were the literary critics most responsible for popularising Ibsen's plays among English-speaking audiences. Gosse was instrumental in getting official financial support for two struggling Irish writers, WB Yeats in 1910 and James Joyce in 1915; this enabled both writers to continue their chosen careers. His most famous book is the autobiographical Father and Son, about his troubled relationship with his Plymouth Brethren father, dramatised for television by Dennis Potter. Published anonymously in 1907, this followed a biography he had written of his father as naturalist, when he was urged by George Moore among others to write more about his own part. Historians caution, that notwithstanding its psychological insight and literary excellence, Gosse's narrative is at odds with the verifiable facts of his own and his parents' lives.
In life, he became a formative influence on Siegfried Sassoon, the nephew of his lifelong friend, Hamo Thornycroft. Sassoon's mother was a friend of Ellen. Gosse was closely tied to figures such as
William Blake was an English poet and printmaker. Unrecognised during his lifetime, Blake is now considered a seminal figure in the history of the poetry and visual arts of the Romantic Age. What he called his prophetic works were said by 20th-century critic Northrop Frye to form "what is in proportion to its merits the least read body of poetry in the English language", his visual artistry led 21st-century critic Jonathan Jones to proclaim him "far and away the greatest artist Britain has produced". In 2002, Blake was placed at number 38 in the BBC's poll of the 100 Greatest Britons. While he lived in London his entire life, except for three years spent in Felpham, he produced a diverse and symbolically rich œuvre, which embraced the imagination as "the body of God" or "human existence itself". Although Blake was considered mad by contemporaries for his idiosyncratic views, he is held in high regard by critics for his expressiveness and creativity, for the philosophical and mystical undercurrents within his work.
His paintings and poetry have been characterised as part of the Romantic movement and as "Pre-Romantic". A committed Christian, hostile to the Church of England, Blake was influenced by the ideals and ambitions of the French and American Revolutions. Though he rejected many of these political beliefs, he maintained an amiable relationship with the political activist Thomas Paine. Despite these known influences, the singularity of Blake's work makes him difficult to classify; the 19th-century scholar William Rossetti characterised him as a "glorious luminary", "a man not forestalled by predecessors, nor to be classed with contemporaries, nor to be replaced by known or surmisable successors". William Blake was born on 28 November 1757 at 28 Broad Street in London, he was the third of seven children. Blake's father, was a hosier, he attended school only long enough to learn reading and writing, leaving at the age of ten, was otherwise educated at home by his mother Catherine Blake. Though the Blakes were English Dissenters, William was baptised on 11 December at St James's Church, London.
The Bible was an early and profound influence on Blake, remained a source of inspiration throughout his life. Blake started engraving copies of drawings of Greek antiquities purchased for him by his father, a practice, preferred to actual drawing. Within these drawings Blake found his first exposure to classical forms through the work of Raphael, Maarten van Heemskerck and Albrecht Dürer; the number of prints and bound books that James and Catherine were able to purchase for young William suggests that the Blakes enjoyed, at least for a time, a comfortable wealth. When William was ten years old, his parents knew enough of his headstrong temperament that he was not sent to school but instead enrolled in drawing classes at Pars's drawing school in the Strand, he read avidly on subjects of his own choosing. During this period, Blake made explorations into poetry. On 4 August 1772, Blake was apprenticed to engraver James Basire of Great Queen Street, at the sum of £52.10, for a term of seven years.
At the end of the term, aged 21, he became a professional engraver. No record survives of any serious disagreement or conflict between the two during the period of Blake's apprenticeship, but Peter Ackroyd's biography notes that Blake added Basire's name to a list of artistic adversaries – and crossed it out; this aside, Basire's style of line-engraving was of a kind held at the time to be old-fashioned compared to the flashier stipple or mezzotint styles. It has been speculated that Blake's instruction in this outmoded form may have been detrimental to his acquiring of work or recognition in life. After two years, Basire sent his apprentice to copy images from the Gothic churches in London, his experiences in Westminster Abbey helped form his artistic style and ideas. The Abbey of his day was decorated with suits of armour, painted funeral effigies and varicoloured waxworks. Ackroyd notes that "...the most immediate would have been of faded brightness and colour". This close study of the Gothic left clear traces in his style.
In the long afternoons Blake spent sketching in the Abbey, he was interrupted by boys from Westminster School, who were allowed in the Abbey. They teased him and one tormented him so much that Basire knocked the boy off a scaffold to the ground, "upon which he fell with terrific Violence". After Basire complained to the Dean, the schoolboys' privilege was withdrawn. Blake experienced visions in the Abbey, he saw Christ and his Apostles and a great procession of monks and priests and heard their chant. On 8 October 1779, Blake became a student at the Royal Academy in Old Somerset House, near the Strand. While the terms of his study required no payment, he was expected to supply his own materials throughout the six-year period. There, he rebelled against what he regarded as the unfinished style of fashionable painters such as Rubens, championed by the school's first president, Joshua Reynolds. Over time, Blake came to detest Reynolds' attitude towards art his pursuit of "general truth" and "general beauty".
Reynolds wrote in his Discourses that the "disposition to abstractions, to generalising and classification, is the great glory of the human mind".
Obituary poetry, in the broad sense, includes any poem that commemorates a person or group of people's death: an elegy. In its stricter sense, though, it refers to a genre of popular verse or folk poetry that had its greatest popularity in the nineteenth century in the United States of America; the genre consists of sentimental narrative verse that tells the story of the demise of its named subjects and seeks to console their mourners with descriptions of their happy afterlife. The genre achieved its peak of popularity in the decade of the 1870s. While full chiefly of conventional pious sentiments, the obituary poets in one sense continue the program of meditations on death begun by the eighteenth-century graveyard poets, such as Edward Young's Night Thoughts, as such continue one of the themes that went into literary Romanticism. Obituary poetry constituted a large portion of the poetry published in American newspapers in the nineteenth century. In 1870, Mark Twain wrote an essay on "Post-mortem Poetry", in which he remarked that: In Philadelphia they have a custom which it would be pleasant to see adopted throughout the land.
It is that of appending to published death-notices two of comforting poetry. Any one, in the habit of reading the daily Philadelphia LEDGER must be touched by these plaintive tributes to extinguished worth. In Philadelphia, the departure of a child is a circumstance, not more followed by a burial than by the accustomed solacing poesy in the PUBLIC LEDGER. In that city death loses half its terror because the knowledge of its presence comes thus disguised in the sweet drapery of verse.and collected examples, such as the following, occasioned by the death of Samuel Pervil Worthington Doble, aged 4 days. Our little Sammy's gone,His tiny spirit's fled. A tear within a father's eye, A mother's aching heart, Can only tell the agonyHow hard; the deaths of children and young adults were particular objects of inspiration to the obituary poets, who memorialized them with sentimental verse. Julia A. Moore, a poet from Michigan who published several volumes of poems on obituary subjects, was a well known exponent of the genre.
G. Washington Childs, sometimes called "The Laureate of Grief", was another well known exponent. Lydia Sigourney, while not confining her work to the genre contributed to it: Twain's character of "Emmeline Grangerford", appearing in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, was inspired by the genre, in large measure by Moore's verse. Twain's was by no means the only parody. Max Adeler mocked the obituary poets in his 1874 Out of the Hurly Burly, Eugene Field produced The Little Peach: John took a bite and Sue a chew,And the trouble began to brew,—Trouble the doctor couldn't subdue.— Too true! Under the turf where the daisies grewThey planted John and his sister Sue,And their little souls to the angels flew,—— Boo hoo! The obituary poets were, in the popular stereotype, either clergymen. Obituary poetry may be the source of some of the murder ballads and other traditional narrative verse of the United States, the sentimental tales told by the obituary poets showed their abiding vitality a hundred years in the genre of teenage tragedy songs.
Death poem Dirge Elegy
Latin literature includes the essays, poems and other writings written in the Latin language. The beginning of Latin literature dates to 240 BC. Latin literature would flourish for the next six centuries; the classical era of Latin literature can be divided into the following periods: Early Latin literature, The Golden Age, The Imperial Period and Late Antiquity. Latin was the language of the ancient Romans, but it was the lingua franca of Western Europe throughout the Middle Ages, so Latin literature includes not only Roman authors like Cicero, Vergil and Horace, but includes European writers after the fall of the Empire, from religious writers like Aquinas, to secular writers like Francis Bacon, Baruch Spinoza, Isaac Newton. Formal Latin literature began in 240 BC; the adaptor was Livius Andronicus, a Greek, brought to Rome as a prisoner of war in 272 BC. Andronicus translated Homer's Greek epic the Odyssey into an old type of Latin verse called Saturnian; the first Latin poet to write on a Roman theme was Gnaeus Naevius during the 3rd century BC.
He composed an epic poem about the first Punic War. Naevius's dramas were reworkings of Greek originals, but he created tragedies based on Roman myths and history. Other epic poets followed Naevius. Quintus Ennius wrote a historical epic, the Annals, describing Roman history from the founding of Rome to his own time, he adopted Greek dactylic hexameter. He became famous for his tragic dramas. In this field, his most distinguished successors were Marcus Pacuvius and Lucius Accius; these three writers used episodes from Roman history. Instead, they wrote Latin versions of tragic themes that the Greeks had handled, but when they copied the Greeks, they did not translate slavishly. Only fragments of their plays have survived. More is known about early Latin comedy, as 26 Early Latin comedies are extant – 20 of which Plautus wrote, the remaining six of which Terence wrote; these men modeled their comedies on Greek plays known as New Comedy. But they treated the plots and wording of the originals freely.
Plautus scattered songs through his plays and increased the humor with puns and wisecracks, plus comic actions by the actors. Terence's plays were more polite in tone, dealing with domestic situations, his works provided the chief inspiration for French and English comedies of the 17th century AD, for modern American comedy. The prose of the period is best known through On Agriculture by Cato the Elder. Cato wrote the first Latin history of Rome and of other Italian cities, he was the first Roman statesman to put his political speeches in writing as a means of influencing public opinion. Early Latin literature ended with Gaius Lucilius, who created a new kind of poetry in his 30 books of Satires, he wrote in an easy, conversational tone about books, food and current events. Traditionally, the height of Latin literature has been assigned to the period from 81 BC to AD 17, although recent scholarship has questioned the assumptions that privileged the works of this period over both earlier and works.
This period is said to have begun with the first known speech of Cicero and ended with the death of Ovid. Cicero has traditionally been considered the master of Latin prose; the writing he produced from about 80 BC until his death in 43 BC exceeds that of any Latin author whose work survives in terms of quantity and variety of genre and subject matter, as well as possessing unsurpassed stylistic excellence. Cicero's many works can be divided into four groups: letters, rhetorical treatises, philosophical works, orations, his letters provide detailed information about an important period in Roman history and offer a vivid picture of the public and private life among the Roman governing class. Cicero's works on oratory are our most valuable Latin sources for ancient theories on education and rhetoric, his philosophical works were the basis of moral philosophy during the Middle Ages. His speeches inspired the founders of the United States. Julius Caesar and Sallust were outstanding historical writers of Cicero's time.
Caesar wrote commentaries on the Gallic and civil wars in a straightforward style to justify his actions as a general. Sallust adopted an pointed style in his historical works, he wrote brilliant descriptions of their motives. The birth of lyric poetry in Latin occurred during the same period; the short love lyrics of Catullus are noted for their emotional intensity. Catullus wrote poems that attacked his enemies. In his longer poems, he suggested images in delicate language. One of the most learned. Called "the most learned of the Romans" by Quintillian, he wrote about a remarkable variety of subjects, from religion to poetry, but only his writings on agriculture and the Latin language are extant in their complete form. The emperor Augustus took a personal interest in the literary works produced during his years of power from 27 BC to AD 14; this period is sometimes called the Augustan Age of Latin Literature. Virgil published his pastoral Eclogues, the Georgics, the Aeneid, an epic poem describing the events that led to the creation of Rome.
Virgil told. Virgil provided divine justification for Roman rule over the world. Although Virgil died before he could put the finishing touches on his poem, it was soon