Agricola and Germania Essay

1604 Words7 Pages
Kali Ryan
Agricola and Germania
October 2, 2012
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 Britian, Agricola. 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 snaking in these criticisms in such a crafty manner had been due to his friendship with high ranking Roman officials whom 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, targeting
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Romans helped build temples, public squares, proper houses, and their national toga was suddenly being seen everywhere. "In their innocent they called this 'civilization', when in fact it was a part of their enslavement" (Tacitus, 15). By carrying over their social norms to other nations, Rome continued to expand in an eased manner, as suggested by Agricola during his reign. Romans were overruling nations that were unnecessary for them to. Moving forward to Germania, which contained much more social criticism than Agricola did by comparing the cultural difference of Germania and Rome. Tacitus described Germania as an empire that revolves strictly around their freedom. The kings of Germania did not hold absolute control over the German citizens. "But even the power of the kings is not absolute or arbitrary. As for the leaders, it is their example rather than their authority that wins them special admiration" (Tacitus, 38). In contrast, the citizens of Rome strongly believed that they attained their own freedom, however they were wrong in the fact that it was the Emperor who held all power in the Roman empire. In addition, Germans treated slaves with much more respect than Romans did. In Rome, the upper class were able to purchase numerous slaves to work in their house, and on their land. Slave owners in Rome treated their slaves harshly and with much disrespect, not providing them with necessities needed to survive. Their reason for this was
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