World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Lucius Ampelius

Article Id: WHEBN0000669336
Reproduction Date:

Title: Lucius Ampelius  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Liber Memorialis, Classical Latin, Janus, Spherical Earth, Claudius Salmasius, Ampelius, Pergamon Altar
Collection:
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Lucius Ampelius


The Liber Memorialis is an ancient book in Latin featuring an extremely concise summary—a kind of index—of universal history from earliest times to the reign of Trajan. It was written by Lucius Ampelius, who was possibly a tutor or schoolmaster. Nothing is known of him or of the date at which he lived; the times of Trajan, Hadrian, Antoninus Pius, the beginning of the 3rd century, and the age of Diocletian and Constantine have all been suggested. The book is dedicated to a Macrinus, who may have been the emperor who reigned 217-218, but that name was not uncommon, and it seems more likely he was simply a young man with a thirst for universal knowledge, which the book was compiled to satisfy.

The book's object and scope are indicated in its dedication:

"Since you desire to know everything, I have written this 'book of notes,' that you may learn of what the universe and its elements consist, what the world contains, and what the human race has done."

The Liber Memorialis seems to have been intended as a textbook to be learned by heart. This little work, in fifty chapters, gives a sketch of cosmography, geography, mythology (Chapters I-X), and history (Chapters X to end). The historical portion, dealing mainly with the republican period, is untrustworthy and the text in many places corrupt; the earlier chapters are more valuable, and contain some interesting information.

Chapter VIII (Miracula Mundi) contains the following, the only reference by an ancient writer to the famous sculptures of the Pergamon Altar, which were discovered in 1871, excavated in 1878, and are now in Berlin:

"At Pergamum there is a great marble altar, 40 feet (12 m) high, with colossal sculptures, representing a battle of the giants."

The first edition of the Liber Memorialis was published in 1638 by Claudius Salmasius (Saumaise) from the Dijon manuscript, now lost, together with the Epitome of Florus. An 1873 edition by Wölfflin was based on Salmasius's copy of the lost codex. The more recent editions are

  • Erwin Assmann's Teubner edition of 1935
  • Nicola Terzaghi's edition, published by Chiantore in Turin ca. 1947 (preface dated 1943)
  • Marie-Pierre Arnaud-Lidet's 1993 edition for the Collection Budé (includes French translation)

References

  • Glaser, Rheinisches Museum, ii. (1843)
  • Wölfflin, De L. Ampelii Libro Memoriali (1854)
  • Zink, Eos, ii (1866)
  • Template:1911

External links

  • LacusCurtius
  • (Erwin Assmann's BT-edition) at Bibliotheca Augustana
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Fair are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.