Remus: A Roman Myth

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Cambridge University Press, Aug 25, 1995 - History - 243 pages
2 Reviews
Romulus founded Rome -- but why does the myth give him a twin brother Remus, who is killed at the moment of the foundation? This mysterious legend has been oddly neglected. Roman historians ignore it as irrelevant to real history; students of myth concentrate on the more glamorous mythology of Greece, and treat Roman stories as of little interest. In this book, Professor Wiseman provides, for the first time, a detailed analysis of all the variants of the story, and a historical explanation for its origin and development. His conclusions offer important new insights, both into the history and ideology of pre-imperial Rome and into the methods and motives of myth-creation in a non-literate society. In the richly unfamiliar Rome of Pan, Hermes and Circe the witch-goddess, where a general grows miraculous horns and prophets demand human sacrifice, Remus stands for the unequal struggle of the many against the powerful few.
  

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Review: Remus: A Roman Myth

User Review  - Louisa - Goodreads

I found this book very interesting, even if the academic language was a bit dense now and then. Briefly, Wiseman sets out to discover when and why the Romulus and Remus legend was born, and why the ... Read full review

Review: Remus: A Roman Myth

User Review  - Melanie - Goodreads

I found much of this book laborious to read. In many parts, it seemed to me that Wiseman was digressing from his main theme - indeed, the last chapter was much devoted to Rome-themed popular culture ... Read full review

Contents

Illustrations
xi
Preface
xiii
A too familiar story THE FABIAN NARRATIVE
1
DE REMO ET ROMULO
2
CONCORD OR DISCORD?
4
THE QUARREL
6
THE DEATH OF REMUS
9
POST MORTEM
12
THE OGULNIAN MONUMENT
72
The Lupercalia CERMALUS AND LUPERCAL
77
THE RITUAL
80
RITUAL AND MYTH
86
The arguments
89
SCHULZE AND AFTER
92
BACK TO POLITICS
95
ALFÖLDI AND AFTER
98

THE PROBLEM
13
Multiform and manifold THE PRIMAL TWIN
18
DIOSCURISM
25
When and where ONE AND A HALF MILLENNIA
31
THE BEGINNINGS
35
A TEST CASE
39
What the Greeks said MATERIAL AND METHODOLOGY
43
THE FIRST CONTACT
45
THE DESCENDANTS OF CIRCE
49
THE END OF INNOCENCE
52
WHERE ARE THE TWINS?
55
THE PROMATHION VERSION
57
CONCLUSION
61
Italian evidence SHEWOLVES AND LIONESSES
63
THE MIRROR
65
ARIADNES THREAD
101
The life and death of Remus EQUALS
103
REMUS THE SLOW
107
REMURIA
110
A NECESSARY DEATH
117
THE CREATION PERIOD
126
The uses of a myth PRELITERATE ROME
129
MEDIEVAL EPILOGUE
150
The other Rome IMPERIAL PRECONCEPTIONS
151
AN UNFAMILIAR CITY
154
Versions of the foundation of Rome
160
Notes
169
Bibliography
220
Index
236
Copyright

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About the author (1995)

Wiseman is professor of classics at the University of Exeter and a fellow of the British Academy.

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