Experiencing Old Age in Ancient Rome
Old age today is a contentious topic. It can be seen as a demographic timebomb or as a resource of wisdom and experience to be valued and exploited. There is frequent debate over how we value the elderly, and whether ageing is an affliction to be treated or a natural process to be embraced. Karen Cokayne explores how ancient Rome dealt with the physical, intellectual and emotional implications of the ageing process, and asks how the Romans themselves experienced and responded to old age. Drawing on a wide range of contemporary material - written sources, inscriptions, and visual evidence - the study brings into focus universal concerns, including geriatric illness, memory loss and senility; the status and role of the old, sexuality and family relationships. The book's unique emphasis on both the individual and society's responses to ageing makes it a valuable contribution to the study of the social history of Rome.
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ancient ancient Rome Anth Antoninus Pius appearance argued Arist Aristotle attitude behaviour believed body Cato century BC Chapter character Cicero courtesan daughter death decline depicted deterioration disease duties elderly emperor emphasised Epod example expected extreme old age father four humours Fronto Galen grey hair Horace husband intellectual literary sources lived Livy Lucian Lucretius Marcus Aurelius marriage married Maximus memory mind mother Musonius old age old man's old woman older Parkin patria potestas philosophical physical and mental pietas Plato Plaut Pliny Ep Pliny NH Plut Plutarch political portraits Quint Quintilian regimen relationship reputedly retirement role Roman society Rome Saller second century Second Sophistic seen Seneca Senectute sexual passions social sons stage Suet Suetonius suggested suicide Tacitus thought Tiberius traditional Tuenda Ulpian Valerius Maximus wife wisdom witch women wrinkles writings wrote young youth