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Agricola and Germania Essay

  • Submitted by: Kali9216
  • on February 23, 2013
  • Category: History
  • Length: 1,677 words

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Below is an essay on "Agricola and Germania" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Agricola and Germania
The Agricola and Germani is a novel that serves two purposes: The Agricola is a eulogy praising Tacitus's father-in-law and commander of Britain, Agricola, while The Germania is an ethnography on German people. Both stories are told through the eyes of Tacitus as he indirectly criticizes Roman politics and society. His reason for making these criticisms in such a crafty manner was due to his friendship with high ranking Roman officials that he did not want to upset. His criticisms were derived from his experiences with Agricola, speeches given by Calgucus, and his ability to compare and contrast cultural differences of Rome and Germania, Tacitus praises German culture throughout The Germania, and allows readers to applaud them for their stress on the importance of freedom. Tacitus's opinion became a crucial part of the story, as sometimes his viewpoints were stated as facts which could dupe the reader. Also, his personal connection with Agricola added to a biased opinion on him and an exaggeration of his accomplishments, which alter the facts. An example from the text that reveals Tacitus's biased feelings toward Agricola is evident through his theory that Agricola died by poison from Domitian, who had been apparently envious of Agricola's fame, although this theory was never proven. He makes up for that bias as a biographer with the way he conveyed the knowledge he attained from his closely knit relationship with Agricola.   As a historian, military history and geographical knowledge were absent in Tacitus's work.
The Agricola serves to criticize Rome on a political level. Tacitus discretely paints Rome to be a corrupt empire with greedy, tyrannical rulers who held complete control over all aspects of Roman life. They held an impervious belief that it was their duty to rule the world, and so they sought to do just that. Tacitus discouraged this insatiable ambition. An excerpt from Calgucus's speech reveals the greed of Rome: "The wealth...

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