Tacitus's characteristic exploitation of geographical setting
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The aim of this thesis is to examine Tacitus's treatment of geographical material in his historical works, considering his sources, his methods and his intentions. In the first six chapters, each of which deals with a particular area which Tacitus describes, there is firstly a discussion of what information was available to Tacitus, and of the likelihood that he employed each source. This is followed by an examination of his purposes in including geographical references to the place concerned, then Tacitus's description is considered in greater detail in support of the purpose(s) suggested. Chapters 7 and 8 aim to put Tacitus's treatment of geography into the perspective of historiographical writing by showing the approach taken by the major surviving historians of the Classical period, and the growth of a convention of geographical description. There is an appendix, in tabular form, which outlines the geographical passages in each historian and the proportion which these occupy of the work of each author.
Thesis, MPhil Master of Philosophy
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