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Title : tacitus on germany
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ISBN : 19381490
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Number of Pages : 30 Pages
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tacitus on germany Reviews

  • M.
    2019-02-07 05:27

    Avrupa'nın feodal halindeki görünümünü merak edenler için başvurulabilecek bu kitap; döneminde yazılan en kapsamlı ve detaylı kitap olmasa da özet mahiyetinde okunabilir. Kitapta pek çok bilginin yanlış veya eksik olduğunu da son derece kapsamlı olan dipnotlardan anlıyoruz. Lakin yine de Kısa Roma Tarihi ile kıyaslandığında bu eserin daha başarılı bir tarihçilik yönü olduğunu söylemek gerek.Bu eserin Notlar-Galya Savaşı Üzerine ile birlikte okunmasının daha yararlı olacağını düşünüyorum. Tacitus'un diğer iki eseri, en önemli eserleri The Histories ve The Annals of Imperial Rome dilimize henüz çevirilmemiş. Bu eser dışında Tacitus'un dilimize ilk çevirilen kitabı Agricola'nın Hayatı veya Britanya Tarihi olmuştu. Bunu 1943 yılında Hamit Dereli çevirmişti.Not: Bu yılın 150. kitabı olan Germania ile 2017 hedefimi tamamlamış bulunmaktayım.

  • Vaishali
    2019-01-23 05:46

    Fascinating. Per Tacitus, Rome invaded Germany for 2 centuries, confronting many tribes including the Aryans. Notable similarities with P.I.E-speaking peoples who entered South Asia millennia ago.Quotes:-------"Silver and gold the gods have denied them… silver vessels have been presented to their princes and ambassadors, but not esteemed more than earthen vessels. The Germans adjoining to our frontiers value gold and silver for commerce.""Their generals procure obedience not by the force of their authority but by their example.""Of all the gods, they worship Mercury most. On certain days he is offered human victims. Hercules and Mars are appeased with sacrificed beasts.""They judge it unsuitable to hold the gods within walls, or represent them like humans. They instead consecrate entire forests and groves.""They divine events from the voices and flight of birds. To this nation it is peculiar to learn divine presages and warnings from horses also. These are nourished by the State in the same sacred woods and groves, all milk-white and never put to work. Yoked to a holy chariot, they are accompanied by the priest and king or communal chief, who both carefully observe his actions and neighing.""In reckoning time they count the number of nights, not days. The night seems to lead and govern the day.""They hang traitors and deserters upon trees. Cowards, sluggards, and unnatural prostitutes are smothered in mud and bogs.""Delinquents upon conviction are condemned to pay a certain number of horses or cattle.""You cannot easily persuade them to farm - to await the return of the seasons and produce of the year - than provoke foes, risking wounds and death. The regard it stupid and spiritless to acquire by sweat what can be gained by blood.""Much of their time they pass in indolence, sleep and repasts.""They trust to their wives, to the ancient men, and to the most impotent domestic worker, all the care of their house, land, and possessions. They themselves loiter.""It is well known none of the several German tribes live in cities.""They prefer digging caves deep underground, overlaying them with great dung heaps. Thither they retire for shelter in the winter, or convey their grain.""They are almost the only Barbarians content with one wife.""The wife gives no dowry to the husband; the husband grants a dowry to the wife.""Adultery is exceedingly rare; a crime instantly punished and inflicted by the husband. He cuts off her hair, expells her from his house naked, in the presence of her kin, and pursues her with whippings throughout the village.""More powerful with them are good manners than with other people are good laws.""They are all nourished with the milk of their own mothers, and never surrendered to handmaids and nurses.""Slow and late do young men come to women, and thus preserve youthful vigor. Neither are virgins hastened to wed. They must both have the same sprightly youth, stature, and marry when equal andable-bodied.""To refuse any man whatsoever under your roof is wicked and inhuman… Upon your departure, if you ask anything, it is their custom to grant it; and with the same facility, they ask of you.""Their food is very simple: wild fruit, fresh venison, or coagulated milk.""To whip a slave, chain him, or doom him to severe labor are things rarely seen…. For there they bear higher sway than the free-born, nay, higher than the nobles. In other countries the inferior condition of freedmen is a proof of public liberty.""Upon the funeral pile, they add neither apparel nor perfumes. Into the fire is thrown the arms of the dead, and sometimes his horse.""As soon as they arrive to maturity of years, they let their hair and beards grow… Over the blood and spoil of a foe they make bare their face.""The most brave wear an iron ring.""Chaucians… the people of all Germans most noble, maintain their grandeur by justice, not violence. They provoke no wars, ravage no countries, nor pursue plunder. The chief evidence of bravery and power is in that without wronging or oppressing others, they become superior to all.""Suevians… divided into several nations with distinct names… have a peculiar custom of twisting their hair and binding it up in a knot… by publicly sacrificing a man, they begin the horrible solemnity of their barbarous worship. "The Aryans, besides their forces, which surpass the several nations just recounted, are stern and truculent. Art, time, and humor improve their natural grimness and ferocity. They wear black shields, paint their bodies black, they choose dark nights to battle; scaring the enemy with their ghastly hue. In all battles the eyes are vanquished first.".

  • Elly
    2019-02-01 02:51

    "...wild en blauw hun ogen, rossig hun haar, fors hun lichamen en slechts tot een momentane krachtsinspanning deugdelijk: voor moeizaam afmattende arbeid hebben zij niet eenzelfde uithoudingsvermogen. En geenszins zijn zij erop ingesteld dorst en hitte te verdragen; aan koude en hongeren zijn zij door klimaat of bodemgesteldheid gewoon geraakt"."...En zij rekenen niet naar dagen zoals wij, maar naar nachten; op deze wijze stellen zij [een tijdstip] vast, aldus maken zij afspraken: hun dunkt het dat de nacht de dag inleidt"."...Desniettegenstaande is de huwelijksmoraal daar streng, ja er is wel geen enkel facet aan hun zeden dat men hoger zou kunnen prijzen. Want zij zijn ongeveer de enigen onder de barbaren die zich met één vrouw vergenoegen... Niemand in Germania gekscheert, wanneer het om zedelijke verdorvenheid gaat.""Winter en lente en zomer hebben betekenis en derhalve benamingen. Voor de herfst is het woord al evenzeer onbekend als zijn goede gaven.""De Treveri en de Nervii maken er aanspraak op van Germaanse afkomst te wezen en zij zijn hierop bijzonder gebrand, als konden zij zich door deze roemruchte verwantschap distantiëren van hun gelijkenis met de Galliërs - te weten van hun traagheid."

  • Fede
    2019-02-12 23:37

    I had studied the topic of this little book at school, but I decided to read it anyway and it turned out far more interesting than I thought.I liked more the first part because, even though it speaks generically about the Germanic populations, it gives satisfying insight into their lives and traditions. It was striking to read how they were advanced and underdeveloped at the same time: their technological developments were probably rude, but their morality was an high standard for that time -even if not in all its aspects, of course. One of the paragraphs that caught my attention is the one that concerns women, and the peculiar attention that their men reserve to them.The second part was less interesting because it was just a list of all the different populations, almost without details, except in some cases.

  • Neil
    2019-01-27 03:32

    Comes with a good introduction, setting the Germania in the context of Roman ethnological writings of the same period and traces the history of the text from its rediscovery in the renaissance period down to modern times. Then comes the text and translation of the Germania. The best part are the extensive notes and commentary, stretching to nearly two hundred pages. The commentary supplies useful notes on early Germanic tribes, customs and religion. Rives work on the Germania is easily one of the best in English.

  • Mark Fuller
    2019-02-07 04:52

    Very interestingThe language in the book is very date,but easily translated to the modern tongue. The book described very civilized people, which surprised me. Excellent read.

  • Richard Reese
    2019-01-31 05:53

    Everyone everywhere has tribal ancestors. Folks with European roots know little about their kin who lived in the countless centuries of wild freedom. Tacitus gives us a glimpse at their world, as it was over 1,900 years ago. He was a Roman historian, born in A.D. 56, and died in 117. He wrote Germania in 98. It provided a brief overview of several dozen Germanic tribes of the era, as viewed from a civilized perspective. For example, the Batavi, Chatti, Usipii, Tencteri, Chauci, Fosi, Cimbri, Anglii, and Varini. (MAP)In the days of Tacitus, Germania was a vast wild frontier of forest and marsh, “a land rude in its surface, rigorous in its climate, cheerless to every beholder and cultivator, except a native.” The mighty Rhine River separated the German motherland from the tribes of Belgica (Belgium) and the Celtic tribes of Gaul (France). Since there were no bridges in those days, the treacherous fast-flowing river provided an effective security barrier.The Rhine protected Germania from the evil Empire. Moving armies across the wild river was a serious challenge, and the barbarians on the other side were notoriously ferocious. The German side was heavily forested. The Roman war machine excelled at fighting in open country, and avoided engagements near forest, where they lost their tactical superiority. So, the badass Germans remained proud, wild, and free, whilst the tribes of Gaul and Belgica, who surrendered to Empire (to avoid annihilation), were obligated to pay tributes and taxes, and provide numerous young conscripts to fight in the Roman legion.Throughout Germania, the people had the appearance of a pure unmixed race. They had reddish hair, blue eyes, large strong bodies, and were not weakened by cold or hunger. They raised herds and flocks, and grew a little grain. Their diet majored in meat, cheese, fruit, and beer. Warriors took great delight in fighting, hunting, feasting, and oblivion drinking. Dreary laborious toil was the domain of women, old men, and slaves.Germanic spirituality majored in reverence for nature. They worshipped in the living temple of the great outdoors — not inside walls. Their deities inhabited sacred groves that were the tribe’s place of origin. Folks would gather in the grove and offer sacrifices, which were sometimes human. A number of tribes had festivals honoring Ertha (Big Mama Earth), a deity always present in their lives.Notably, they were still animists — they did not imagine their deities to have human form. Centuries later, as Indo-European influences intensified, a pantheon (family) of humanlike deities evolved in German metaphysics. In this new culture of human supremacy, a powerful male god ruled over a colorful mob of lesser gods, goddesses, and tricksters. This tradition spread from Greece (Zeus), to Rome (Jupiter), Germany (Wotan), and Scandinavia (Odin).Germania was not a realm of love and peace. “They actually think it tame and stupid to acquire by the sweat of toil what they might win by their blood.” Raids and conflicts were common, and tribes depended on their warriors for survival. In their rites of initiation, the transition of a boy into a man was marked by giving him a shield and spear. From then on, the man was not allowed to cut his hair or beard until the day he killed his first foe.Year after year, tribes invested much time and effort in killing folks from other tribes. Romans were delighted by the fact that Germans worked so hard to kill other Germans. They had to fight to survive. The Cherusci were seen as foolish and cowardly, because of their deep love of peace — they were exterminated. It was common for conquered tribes to go extinct; survivors were sold into slavery.The Batavi avoided gangster raids by inhabiting an island in the Rhine. The Suiones felt so safe and secure that they didn’t carry arms all the time — they had a pleasant life by the sea, centuries before the era of seaborne Viking terrorists. Some tribes enjoyed safety by inhabiting remote locations in vast primeval forests.The Hercynian forest once spanned east from the Rhine, across modern Germany, to the Carpathians, and all the way to Dacia (present-day Romania). A quick traveler could cross the forest north to south in nine days, but it was very long, from east to west. In 51 B.C., Julius Caesar noted, “There is no man in the Germany we know who can say that he has reached the edge of that forest, though he may have gone forward sixty days’ journey, or who has learnt in what place it begins.” Pliny also mentioned it: “The vast trees of the Hercynian forest, untouched for ages, and as old as the world, by their almost immortal destiny exceed common wonders.”Every ecosystem has a limit to how many humans it can support. In the time of Tacitus, the carrying capacity was quite low, because large-scale forest mining and soil mining were not yet possible. Iron axes were still rare luxuries, and the moldboard plow would not come into common use for another thousand years. Forest soils were too heavy for digging sticks.Aurochs (wild cattle) inhabited a range spanning from England to China. Bulls were up to 6 feet (180 cm) tall at the shoulder, much larger than modern cattle. They were very strong, terribly aggressive, and loved to disembowel passing humans, wolves, and other annoyances. Hence, the Germans preferred to enslave passive, dim-witted domestic cattle and sheep, which could be confined close to home. By milking the livestock, they could extract four times more calories from their enslaved animals, compared to simply eating them. Cheese could be stored for later use.Nobody owned aurochs, or confined them to pastures, but somebody did own the horses and livestock. These animals were an important form of wealth, and stealing them from neighbors was an exciting way to get rich quick, or die trying. Hence, raiding was a popular pastime. Naturally, it was a good way to make enemies, and ignite long-term feuds. By majoring in herding, and building no permanent settlements, tribes could pack up and move when life got too hot.In a world of tribal warfare, there was strength in numbers. Family planning increased vulnerability. “To limit the increase of children, or put to death any of the later progeny is accounted infamous.” Thus, limited carrying capacity, plus population pressure, plus the crazy-making juju of hoarding wealth hurled Germania into a bloody cesspool, similar to the far larger one we’re soaking in today.Our cousins the chimps do not enslave domesticated animals to inflate carrying capacity. They respond to the tensions of crowding with kicks, punches, and bites — sometimes killing competitors. Germans did increase carrying capacity, did not limit births, made enemies with raiding, nurtured feuds, and resolved tensions with spears, javelins, and long knives — intending to kill competitors. This was not the only possible strategy, in theory, but it has been common around the world. Crowded critters get crabby.Tacitus described one tribe of good old-fashioned hunter-gatherers, the only example of fully wild and free Europeans I have found. The Fenni (Finnish) enjoyed a life of magnificent simplicity in the great white north. Their culture was so complete and well balanced that they had no need to wish for anything. Listen:“The Fenni live in a state of amazing savageness and squalid poverty. They are destitute of arms, horses, and settled abodes: their food is herbs; their clothing, skins; their bed, the ground. Their only dependence is on their arrows, which, for want of iron, are headed with bone; and the chase is the support of the women as well as the men; the former accompany the latter in the pursuit, and claim a share of the prey. Nor do they provide any other shelter for their infants from wild beasts and storms, than a covering of branches twisted together. This is the resort of youth; this is the receptacle of old age. Yet even this way of life is in their estimation happier than groaning over the plough; toiling in the erection of houses; subjecting their own fortunes and those of others to the agitations of alternate hope and fear. Secure against men, secure against the gods, they have attained the most difficult point, not to need even a wish.”

  • Arvid Jakobsson
    2019-02-15 00:40

    Ca 60 sidor text och drygt 100 sidor kommentarer. Klassiskt! Tacitus är rätt högfärdig gentemot de barbariska horderna öster om Rhen, men det är uppenbart att han samtidigt är vettskrämd för dem. Några rader om Sverige får han med mot slutet.

  • Francesca
    2019-02-09 04:28

    … nam primi in omnibus proeliis oculi vincuntur.… dato che in ogni battaglia i primi ad essere soggiogati sono gli occhi.De origine et situ Germanorum, 43Tacito è uno di quegli autori che, quando ti toccavano in traduzione al liceo, odiavi sinceramente. Almeno a me capitava così. Invece, ora, a distanza di un lungo-non meglio quantificabile-e comunque meglio non renderlo tale tempo, in una, a mio gusto, splendida traduzione di Bianca Ceva, con la possibilità di confrontare la traduzione con il testo originale accanto, rileggendolo, ho potuto apprezzare immensamente. Al di là di certi limiti che accompagnano l'opera, il De origine et situ Germanorum è un lavoro estremamente interessante, breve ma prezioso, moderno e, a tratti, persino molto bello. Non credo serva raccontare quest'opera o, forse, sono io a non esserne capace. Quello che tuttavia posso fare è consigliare caldamente questa lettura a chiunque.

  • Kitty Red-Eye
    2019-01-25 03:50

    Sure, there were many good names of old Germanic tribes in this short text, and the "wow factor" of reading something so old that it could basically be from a different planet always gets me, but for some reason, I found it a bit unsatisfactory. Very vague, not much material to learn anything from, at least not without commentary, which I'm sure exists. The version I read was a free ebook with a translation from 1910, maybe a newer one with commentary would have been better. I do admit that my classical education leaves a lot to be desired. On the whole, an interesting read, but the "wow factor" is my main fascination.

  • Ron
    2019-02-05 01:53

    A first century Roman's report on the Germana with whom Roma shared an long and occasionally contested border. Interesting for both what he got wrong as well as got right. Historians seem sympathetic.I read this a dozen years ago while preparing a historical fiction series set in sixth century Britain, where the sub-Roman Britons are under pressure from the immigrating (and sometimes attacking) Angles, Saxons and Jutes.The translations I read--not necessarily this one--was clear and easy to read. Tacitus respected the Germans.A good read.

  • Crispy
    2019-02-23 06:53

    I enjoyed Tacitus' Germania very much when I first read it many years ago, although my venerable Penguin paperback has long since disintegrated, not unlike the Roman Empire, gone to dust. The Duckworth edition is an erudite representation of Germania, it's historical context and literary genesis. I'm not sure, however, if "the Silent One's" pithy style of expression is always well served by this translation. Still it was fun to catch up with an old friend, as it were. I would recommend The Annals, for those serious about getting to know Tacitus at his finest.

  • Teresa
    2019-02-21 01:30

    The prose is simple and straightforward. It's literary merit is in its subtlety. Brilliant! Since it is a bilingual edition, you can easily follow the Latin text with the Portuguese despite some memory problems with the vocabulary.A prosa é simples e directa. O mérito literário encontra-se na subtileza com que este surge na prosa. Como é uma edição bilingue, pode-se seguir facilmente o texto latino com o apoio do português, apesar de alguns problemas de memória face ao vocabulário.

  • Ukamikazu
    2019-02-11 05:27

    I gave Tacitus three stars because I was researching Germania and I wanted a historical perspective which he gave me perfectly in both Latin and English. This was a very utilitarian read for my purposes but pleasurable nonetheless. His objective was a simple & brief regarding the customs of the Scandza descended Goths and their geography and he did just that pithily and not without a soupçon of humor no doubt born from his heritage.

  • Maclain
    2019-01-27 02:31

    Awesome, I would like way more info on the Germanic tribes.

  • Shawneci
    2019-02-04 02:40

    Excellant description of Ancient Germany by Tacitus!

  • Cicely
    2019-02-20 03:48

    Great translation. Brings history alive.

  • Jeff
    2019-02-12 02:38

    A really interesting ancient account of ancient German tribes during the Roman Empire. Probably a bit jaded but you would probably expect that from a Roman writer. My favorite quote: "In all their houses the children are raised naked and nasty."

  • Shannon R Sopha
    2019-01-28 02:53

    A viewA pleasant view into our ancestral tribes, albeit from an occupiers perspective. Still, a great look back in time, one which Winston Churchill would rely on for his accounts of British history.

  • Caroline Beatle
    2019-02-20 23:50


  • Diogo Jesus
    2019-01-25 23:27

    Very interesting. An inside on the senatorial early imperial roman era of the different inhabitants of the germanic lands east of the Rhein.

  • Marco
    2019-02-12 00:42

    Obiettivo trattato etnografico sui popoli della Germania, realizzato con fonti autorevoli quali Cesare e Plinio il vecchio.

  • sabisteb
    2019-02-16 03:43

    Tacitus (Publius Cornelius Tacitus) war ein adeliger römischer Historiker und Senator. Seine historische Abhandlung Germania, ist eine der wenigen Schriften der Antike, die unsere Germanischen Vorfahren behandeln. Er beschreibt seinen römischen Mitbürgern ein wildes und ursprüngliches Volk, das sich grundlegend von dem der Römer und deren Lebensweise unterscheidet. Er stilisiert die Germanen zu einer Art edlem Barbaren, den er dekadente Römer der Kaiserzeit sich teilweise als Vorbild nehmen sollte. So haben die edlen Germanen erst spät sexuelle Kontakte und nehmen die Ehe sehr ernst (anders als wohl die Römer zu jener Zeit).Behandelt werden 6 Abschnitte der Germania (in teils stark gekürzter Form):1. Germanien in seiner Gesamtheit und die Germanen selbst (Ein bisschen Geografie)2. Könige wählen sie aufgrund ihrer adeligen Abstammung, Heerführer aufgurnd der Taperkeit (Kriegsführung der Germanen)3. Über wenige wichtige Angelegenheiten entscheiden die führenden Männer, über die bedeutenden alle. (Politische und soziale Strukturen der Germanen).4. 4. Wenn sie nicht in den Krieg ziehen, verbringen sie nicht viel Zeit mit der Jagd, mehr mit dem Nichtstun, dem Schlafen und Essen gehen (Alltag in Germanien)5. Spät kommen die jungen Männer mit der Liebe in Berührung (Ehe und Familie)6. Einrichtungen und Gebräuche der einzelnen Stämme (Ein kurzer Überblick über verschiedenen Germanenstämme und ihre Besonderheiten)Tacitus Germania ist selbst in der Reclam Ausgabe Germania ein eher dünnes Büchlein, dennoch ist diese Hörbuchausgabe immer noch sehr stark gekürzt, sozusagen auf die Highlights. Die Übersetzung ist deutlich freier als in meiner gedruckten Tacitus Ausgabe und bezieht sich wohl auf dieses Buch Germania (Die Bibliothek der Alten Welt), dafür jedoch auch deutlich verständlicher, so dass man dem Inhalt sehr gut folgen kann und dieses Sachbuch der Antike auch als Hörbuch gut verfolgen kann ohne durch altertümliche oder umständliche Satzkonstruktionen vom Inhalt des Buches abgelenkt zu werden.Erwin Grosche liest unterhaltsam und deutlich, wenn auch ein wenig oberlehrerhaft, aber das ist bei diesem Text wohl auch kaum anders möglich.Das Titelbild hingegen finde ich wenig gelungen, da wäre eine schöne Antike Abbildung deutlich angemessener zu wesen als diese Deutsche Walküre.

  • Nick
    2019-01-23 03:39

    Pretty damn interesting. This is like a very early ethnographical account of the Germanic peoples from the Roman perspective. It gives a theorized origin and then delves into their manners, customs, religion, politics etc. I have no idea how accurate it is, but it reads weirdly similar to the "noble savage" literature of later centuries. So I am suspicious that the Tacitus idealized the warrior nobility aspect of Germanic culture here. Combined with that idealization are semi-patronizing comments about the naive simplicity of the Germans in their primitive condition. But it is interesting that Tacitus not also paints the Germans somewhat in a similar manner as we tend to perceive them in the modern period. As a reserved, cold, and orderly nation yet one oddly prone to aggression. He also regards them as a primordial race on the basis that nobody from Asia, Mediterranean Europe, or Africa would go to a place of cold and starvation like Germany. Plus, they say they got to Germany from the ocean, and any place where you could take a boat to Germany from in the distant past is even more inhospitable. Yet he also later admits that there probably is Gaulish/Celtic-Germanic admixture. He also regards them as unusually monogamous, except for the elites which collected wives as a part of diplomatic exchange.

  • Sharon Barrow Wilfong
    2019-02-02 02:48

    Tacitus is one of those writers whose name crops up in other books or reviews I've read so I downloaded a free edition of Germania onto my Kindle. I enjoyed it so much that I bought the Leopold Classic Library Edition of Tacitus' Agricola, Germania and Dialogue on Oratory.It was after careful consideration that I bought this edition after reading several reviews about other translations which received mixed reviews. Frankly how do I know how accurately Church and Brodribb translated Tacitus' works? But I do like how carefully they annotated each fragment of writing that has been preserved through the ages. I also have the Penguin Editions but they received negative reviews. Still, I suppose it wouldn't hurt to read them and compare.Germania is the middle work in this trio of writings. As a lover of all types of culture both past and present, I enjoyed Tacitus' thorough description of every aspect of ancient German culture. Of course, this area encompasses broad swaths of Europe that includes many tribes which include the Celts as well as several others whose names are not remembered today.For the rest of the review cut and paste the link to my blog:

  • James
    2019-02-13 01:40

    A quick, well-written read. And in view of Germany’s admitting 800,000 migrant refugees in 2015, Tacitus’s observation — 1,900 years ago — of the German character, seems particularly trenchant today:‘In social feasts, and deeds of hospitality, no nation upon earth was ever more liberal and abounding. To refuse admitting under your roof any man whatsoever, is held wicked and inhuman. Every man receives every comer, and treats him with repasts as large as his ability can possibly furnish. When the whole stock is consumed, he who has treated so hospitably guides and accompanies his guest to the next house, though neither of them invited. Nor avails it, that they were not; they are there received, with the same frankness and humanity. Between a stranger and an acquaintance, in dispensing the rules and benefits of hospitality, no difference is made. Upon your departure, if you ask anything, it is the custom to grant it; and with the same facility, they ask of you. In gifts they delight, but neither claim merit from what they give, nor own any obligation for what they receive. Their manner of entertaining their guests is familiar and kind.’

  • Lau
    2019-02-13 06:40

    Este libro es un caso verdaderamente singular, en diversos sentidos, es el que representa en el conjunto de la literatura latina la Germania de Tácito.En primer lugar, estamos ante la única monografía etnográfica (un texto autónomo que se ocupa de la vida y las costumbres de un solo pueblo) que ha llegado hasta nosotros desde la Antigüedad. Además, por su contenido, constituye una de las fuentes escritas más importantes acerca de los antiguos germanos, lo cual hizo de ella no sólo una obra de consulta indispensable para los investigadores del tema, sino también una herramienta para aquellos que alguna vez quisieron resaltar supuestas virtudes del pueblo alemán, ya fuera en la época romántica o bien durante el nazismo. Por último, pero no menos importante, su prosa ejemplar es una de las mejores que ha legado a Roma. Con su extraordinario estilo, Tácito consigue que el interés de Germania no se agote en el cúmulo de informaciones y curiosidades acerca del más feroz enemigo de Roma, sino que se despierte al deleite de leer lo que puede lograr una gran pluma a partir de materiales que ella misma vuelve sumamente atractivos.

  • A. Hotzler
    2019-02-04 01:37

    I'm extremely skeptical--even reading the annotations provided--of Tacitus' information. Hearsay, commonplaces, and the overly-influential Roman mode(s) of life in comparison to Germanic life are only a few of the issues of Tacitus' report on the Germani. Although Tacitus did have family/connections in the Roman army's front lines facing the Germani, this is no way explains the ability of Tacitus to provide a detailed account of the "Reudigni, Aviones, Anglii, Varini, Eudoses, Sauarini and Nuitones" worship practices in the sacred grove, and the cleansing of the altar--and sacrifice of the slaves who wash it--yet no one is allowed to see this; if dead men tell no tales, and perhaps the Germani understood this practice well enough, but that doesn't account to how this would have been related to the Romans.I'm quite skeptical, and whilst I go back and forth between two and three stars, I think I lean towards a two. It's not quite Fox News "objective," but it's not far off.

  • Johanna
    2019-01-29 01:36

    Fann Tacitus' Germania att vara en mycket kort men intressant text. För mig synes det som att han vandrar från att beskriva delar som verkar mycket troliga rent sakmässigt, samtidigt som det finns ställen där han antar en ton som helt klart är lite smått hånfullt.Helt klart så handlar det inte om objektivitet i romersk "historieskrivning" - och det märks också på flertalet ställen där hans åsikter faller åt det mer personliga hållet.Tyckte speciellt om följande citat:“För övrigt, bortsett från den fara som hotar på ett bistert och okänt hav - vem skulle ha lämnat Asien, Afrika eller Italien och begivit sig till Germanien, ett land med en frånstötande landskapsbild och ett hårt klimat, ett land, som är ledsamt att bebygga och skåda, såvida man ej där råkar ha sin födelsebygd?”

  • Phil
    2019-02-08 02:37

    Footnotes and explanations 5 stars. 5 stars also to the translation into very readable modern German.3 stars to the text itself. I expected longer and more in-depth descriptions of the "Germans". I new Tacitus not to be the most exact researcher and people talking about this text always said that he wrote about the "romantic ideal of the non-civilized culture being in it's core better than the Roman one which was deteriorating into sinfulness" (much like the view of Karl May about the Native Americans). So I expected more open romantic longing and more criticism. For me, this is one of those texts which are not so very exiting and interesting reads, whereas the discussion about it afterwards is a pure delight.