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Roman Patriotism

Living reference work entry
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Abstract

This chapter explores Roman patriotism, turning first to invocations of Roman patriotism in the history of political thought and paying particular attention to the ways in which Rome was both a model to emulate and to be avoided. Drawing on scholarship on both patriotism and nationalism, the chapter isolates two possible sources of attachment to country: patriotism rooted in principle and patriotism rooted in gratitude. The chapter then turns to Polybius, Cicero, Sallust, Livy, and Vergil, highlighting their accounts of Roman patriotism’s sources and dynamics while also noting the tensions in their accounts between the love of glory in service to country and the desire that glory be recognized. Seneca and Augustine conclude the chapter, which ends by highlighting the problem of a principled patriotism that does not collapse into imperialism.

Keywords

Roman patriotism Cicero Vergil Augustine Roman philosophy 

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of Wisconsin-MadisonMadisonUSA

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