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Tacitus

The Roman senator and historian Publius Cornelius Tacitus (55-120) held the highest political offices under several emperors. From the year 88 he was praetor, from 97 consul and from 112 governor of the province of Asia. He was considered one of the most important orators of his time; his oratory was stylistically oriented towards Cicero (curiously, Tacitus means "the silent one"). Tacitus devoted himself to the maxim "sine ira et studio" (Latin "without anger and zeal" = to praise no one too much and hate no one). It should be noted, however, that he often did not adhere to this principle and took sides. He wrote an extensive work on cultural history, but only dared to publish his writings after the death of the dictatorial Emperor Domitian (51-96). For he basically rejected the monarchy and repeatedly lamented the loss of senatorial freedom.

Tacitus - Statue vor dem Parlamennt in Wien (Österreich) und Seite aus den Annalen

The work "Agricola" is an excursus on Britain and "Germania" a description of the landscape and inhabitants of Germania. In the second he reports on the drinking habits of the Germanic tribes along the Rhine and mentions that viticulture is unknown there. His most important works were "Dialogus" (Causes of the decline of eloquence), "Historiae" (Time of the Flavians) and "Annales" (Time from Augustus' death to Domitian), in which he draws a psychological picture of the history of the rulers of that time in a way that is free of illusions and rather pessimistic. In the "Annales" he tells of a Carthaginian wine made from dried grapes.

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