It is generally recognized that Lucretius' treatment of earthquakes and pestilences (6.535-607; 1090-1286) exerted great influence on Book 6 of Seneca's Natural Questions. But while a large consensus exists that both authors tend to emphasize the moral value of scientific knowledge, further research is needed with respect to Seneca's “technical” re-use of Epicurean physics and meteorology. In the present paper, I shall address this issue in three stages. First, I will analyze the structure and intellectual goals of Seneca's “doxographic” review of seismological theories (6.5-20). Far from being a doxographic account sensu proprio, such a careful review constructs the inspiring image of an intergenerational community of inquirers engaged in a virtually neverending effort. Second, I will focus on the skilful assimilation of Lucretius' atomism in Seneca's account of post-earthquake plagues (6.27-28). The special interest of this aetiological sub-section lies in its creative manipulation of Lucretius' theories, for Seneca succeeds in readapting the Epicurean explanation of the origin of diseases and its typically atomistic consideration of matter to the Stoic view of physical elements. Third and last, I will suggest that the chapter immediately following the aetiology of plagues (6.29) entails a subtle allusion to the climate of the late Republic – if not to the fate of Lucretius himself.

Tutrone, F. (2017). Seneca on the Nature of Things: Moral Concerns and Theories of Matter in Natural Questions 6. LATOMUS(76), 765-789.

Seneca on the Nature of Things: Moral Concerns and Theories of Matter in Natural Questions 6

Tutrone, Fabio
2017-09-28

Abstract

It is generally recognized that Lucretius' treatment of earthquakes and pestilences (6.535-607; 1090-1286) exerted great influence on Book 6 of Seneca's Natural Questions. But while a large consensus exists that both authors tend to emphasize the moral value of scientific knowledge, further research is needed with respect to Seneca's “technical” re-use of Epicurean physics and meteorology. In the present paper, I shall address this issue in three stages. First, I will analyze the structure and intellectual goals of Seneca's “doxographic” review of seismological theories (6.5-20). Far from being a doxographic account sensu proprio, such a careful review constructs the inspiring image of an intergenerational community of inquirers engaged in a virtually neverending effort. Second, I will focus on the skilful assimilation of Lucretius' atomism in Seneca's account of post-earthquake plagues (6.27-28). The special interest of this aetiological sub-section lies in its creative manipulation of Lucretius' theories, for Seneca succeeds in readapting the Epicurean explanation of the origin of diseases and its typically atomistic consideration of matter to the Stoic view of physical elements. Third and last, I will suggest that the chapter immediately following the aetiology of plagues (6.29) entails a subtle allusion to the climate of the late Republic – if not to the fate of Lucretius himself.
28-set-2017
Settore L-FIL-LET/04 - Lingua E Letteratura Latina
Settore L-FIL-LET/05 - Filologia Classica
Tutrone, F. (2017). Seneca on the Nature of Things: Moral Concerns and Theories of Matter in Natural Questions 6. LATOMUS(76), 765-789.
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
Latomus_2017-3_09_Tutrone.pdf

Solo gestori archvio

Descrizione: Testo completo dell'articolo
Dimensione 469.11 kB
Formato Adobe PDF
469.11 kB Adobe PDF   Visualizza/Apri   Richiedi una copia

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10447/246341
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 4
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 3
social impact