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Article

Валерий Максим: римлянин на грани эпох

Вестник древней истории. 2019. Т. 79. № 1. С. 77-89.

The article is devoted to the analysis of the views of Valerius Maximus (first half of the first century AD), the author of a collection of moralizing stories, Factorum et dictorum memorabilium libri novem. Valerius Maximus’ work belongs to the time of transition from the Republic to the Empire. The main idea of his work is to praise Roman traditional values related to the Republic. Approximately three out of every five stories in his work refer to the epoch before the Gracchi, when the crisis of the Republic started. He does not indulge in edification, rather, in his work there can be seen a timeless admiration for Valour and condemnation of Vice, the contrast with contemporaneity being implicit. At the same time, he praises the modern life attributing its benefits to the ruling Emperor. Having no access to power and its privileges he might have been quite sincere in his admiration for the Emperor. It was not only due to the tradition but also to his worldview that he is associated with both ages, making at the same time apparent a connection between their views and values despite their discrepancy. Valerius Maximus’ work presents a set of knowledge and ideas that reflected the worldview of an ordinary educated Roman.