Ancient Rome (Let's See Library - Ancient Civilization) by Lucia Raatma

By Lucia Raatma

Describes the historical past, executive, humans, tradition, elements of way of life, and enduring legacy of historic Rome.

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Even in your gait you should not ignore the importance of looking good: it can attract or put off potential boyfriends. One woman swings her sides artfully, taking in air with her flowing tunic, and she haughtily takes measured steps. Another woman plods like the sunburned wife of an Umbrian farmer, and takes huge, straddling steps. But as in so many things, there should be a middle ground here too: one gait is uncultured, the other more dainty [lit. “soft”] than necessary. It is appropriate that Ovid offers the most complete extant example of teaching women how to walk; he offers women a form of instruction akin to that which Cicero offered his son (Off.

G. Taladoire 1951; Taplin 1978, 58–76; Graf 1991; Valakas 2002. Wright 1974, 158–9 collects other instances in Roman comedy where a character takes exception to the cocky pose or gait of a slave. Dramatic walking 37 that he is so confident amount to the same thing. Furthermore, comedy’s interest in gaits often manifests itself in especially self-conscious or metatheatrical ways; comic characters frequently impersonate others, in part by adopting appropriate body language. In such cases, the body of the actor (or, properly speaking, the character) functions as a sort of second mask.

54 The difficulty 53 54 On the epistemological issues that arise in the study of a “peculiarly concrete form of knowledge” such as how to walk correctly, see Fowler 2007, 3–4. For this reason Horsfall 1971 accepts Leo’s suggestion, reported in the apparatus criticus of Gercke’s Teubner, that the phrase non ambulamus sed incedimus is an interpolation. Though I agree with Horsfall’s larger point that incedere often refers to walking in an unmarked sense, the existence of a parallel use of incedere (also noted by Horsfall) to refer to a woman walking in a stately manner (Juno at Aen.

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