The Story of Curtius Rufus, from Pliny and Tacitus

June 30th, 2020

In this story, young Curtius Rufus is about to give up on a political career as he's surrounded by rumours and prejudice, when an African spirit appears to him with a positive message... This story is told by both Pliny the Younger (Letters, 7.27) and Tacitus (Annals, 11.20-21) though Pliny is rather kinder to both the spirit and to Rufus than Tacitus is! Followed by a discussion looking at race and ethnicity in the Roman world.

Content warning: racism, ableism, abortion

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