Nobilitas Vera: A Commentary and Translation of Juvenal's Eighth Satire.
Abstract: The Sixteen Satires of (Decimus Iunius) Iuvenalis have long been
misinterpreted. Despite numerous scholarly attempts to unmask the authorial persona or
impossibly recreate the life of the satirist, there has been little focus on the
fundamental information about Romanitas available in the Satires themselves. While the
Satires provided a means for literary entertainment and a medium ... read morethrough which Juvenal
himself could express his disgust with the supposed decline of Roman virtues and Romanitas
itself, there is much that can be learned about the basic elements of Roman thought and
cultural identity. Satire VIII addresses the topic of nobilitas vera. Much of the
scholarship on this particular satire focuses on the character of the "speaker" or the
"speaker's" use of negative exempla to make a point about morality; however, the bulk of
these studies fail to directly address the message about Roman virtus and the elements
which form its construct, their significance to the formation of Roman identity, and how
they shape the concepts of Romanitas. This paper will analyze the previous scholarship on
Juvenal, critique the persona theory, and argue the points the author makes which
contribute to the factors which shaped Romanitas and formed Roman identity particularly
against the Other, Romanitas being the essence of what made someone Roman, and the Other
being those who were not. This study of Satire VIII will show how the satire uses the
concepts and language that defined nobilitas vera in ancient Roman culture and thought. It
will compare Juvenal's work to that of other Roman authors, identify similarities and
differences, and assess how Juvenal's presentation differed and why.
Thesis (M.A.)--Tufts University, 2013.
Submitted to the Dept. of Classics.
Advisor: James Harrington.
Committee: Gregory Crane, and John Fyler.
Keyword: Classical studies.read less