Talk:Latin literature

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Among a few other reclassifications and additions, I've added a section on "Early Latin literature", since Plautus and Terence don't really belong in the Golden Age, and Ennius seems to deserve a mention. -- EALacey 20:47, 1 Nov 2003 (UTC)

Should mediaeval and Christian Latin literature be on its own page? Just about all Western European literature before 1200 or thereabouts is in Latin. Classicists typically neglect anything written after the fall of the Western Roman Empire, and tend to devalue works from after say 200 or so. -- IHCOYC 17:31 7 Jul 2003 (UTC)

Should authors' works be listed along with the authors? I notice a few links, eg. to the Aeneid or the Gallic Wars... but those aren't the only works by Vergil and Caesar. So should this aim to be a comprehensive list of works, or just links to authors' pages which have lists of works? Basically I'm asking... why just Aeneid and De Bello Gallico...? -- Danno 7 May 2004

I've expanded the main article considerably, and removed the request for expansion. Of course, there's still much more that could be said on the subject, and I don't mean to imply otherwise. GBWallenstein 22:17, 26 February 2006 (UTC) Regarding Collaboration of the Week: it seems we've missed the deadline there, about a month and a half ago. So we will have to re-submit the request. It'd be nice if Wiki automatically took the sign down when the deadline passed; I saw the sign and assumed the request was still current and pending. Since it's not, I took down the sign. GBWallenstein 22:23, 26 February 2006 (UTC)

Latin texts[edit]

Maybe I've missed it, but wouldn't it be nice to put all the old Latin texts into the Wiki? Or is that not allowed due to copyright reasons?--Van der Hoorn 13:58, 30 May 2006 (UTC)

There are no copyrights on the Latin texts themselves; modern editions, however, which include a fair amount of comparison and reconstruction work by the editors, may be copyrighted. Older editions from the 1800s are fair game to include (as are older English translations whose copyrights have expired). The place to put them, however, is not Wikipedia itself but Wikisource -- Ferkelparade π 14:04, 30 May 2006 (UTC)
Then maybe it's nice to put a reference somewhere to Wikisource, so people may be aware of the fact that Latin texts are available.--Van der Hoorn 16:13, 5 June 2006 (UTC)


I have restored Florus. Who said anything about being "notable"? I recently re-read his history and enjoyed it for some relevant remarks about Augustus not recorded elsewhere. Peterlewis (talk) 06:16, 16 April 2008 (UTC) I have restored him again: why do authors in the list have to be "important"? And on whose say so?? And I do not need to cite sources: none of the others are cited. Peterlewis (talk) 12:52, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Whoever is deleting florus is clearly a vandal since he or she has not responded to my previous messages as above. Peterlewis (talk) 14:55, 16 April 2008 (UTC)
  • If you'll look at the page history on 27 March, the same editor removed a whole bunch of authors. Should those be restored as well? Aristophanes68 (talk) 15:34, 16 April 2008 (UTC)
Having had a look at your page, I answer yes, please restore all the authors he deleted. I don't think anyone should delete authors they don't approve of or don't like. Wiki should be an impartial source of information. When restoring, could you keep my recent inserts (like the images and Florus)? Peterlewis (talk) 15:44, 16 April 2008 (UTC)
I liked your insertions but there must be more we would all like to know about! Peterlewis (talk) 19:10, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

I don't work on Latin literature, so you're on your own there! Maybe go to the talk pages of the authors you're interested in and post a request for help? Aristophanes68 (talk) 19:35, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

OK I have added Josephus, which was major omission, and will now hunt for more! Thanks for your help. Peterlewis (talk) 20:47, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Sorry Peterlewis, I didn't realise there was a discussion here (please assume WP:GOODFAITH). The reason I deleted several writers was not because I don't like them, but because I wasn't sure if we wanted to include all the authors here and here (they're basically all the authors that have a significant amount of surviving material). If we do, should we also include authors whose works have not survived (some of whom attained great renown in their own lifetime)? And by the way, Josephus wrote in Greek, not Latin.--Yolgnu (talk) 23:52, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

OK, I stand corrected, but why not add all those authors on the website you mention? I assume that they have Wiki entries. The missing authors or texts can be referred by putting in the link to Lost work surely. Peterlewis (talk) 04:44, 17 April 2008 (UTC)
It's just, there's a hell of a lot of authors there (about 120), and they're just the ones who have a significant amount of surviving work. The number of authors whose work doesn't survive (or only survives in small fragments) is many times that. Do we really need to list several hundred authors? If you take a look at the literature pages for other languages, the authors listed are very select.--Yolgnu (talk) 05:28, 17 April 2008 (UTC)

So eliminate the lost works (shown elsewhere) and add in at least some of the other authors using the criterion that each must have a Wiki article. Thats surely not too onerous? If you start to select what criteria do you use? Peterlewis (talk) 06:18, 17 April 2008 (UTC)

That sounds good, I'll get round to it in a couple of days. We should also mention their magnum opus, if they had one.--Yolgnu (talk) 08:12, 17 April 2008 (UTC)
I have added Varro and Cassius Dio to the list, so that saves you two of the missing authors. Major works to come later. Peterlewis (talk) 09:29, 17 April 2008 (UTC)
Varro was already on the list, and Cassius Dio wrote in Greek. I appreciate your enthusiasm though.--Yolgnu (talk) 09:42, 17 April 2008 (UTC)

On second thoughts, there's just too many if we do it that way. I say we limit it to those who have been published by the Loeb Classical Library. Their selection of authors is pretty definitive.--Yolgnu (talk) 13:08, 17 April 2008 (UTC)

  • That sounds reasonable -- make sure that you add a statement to that effect at the top of the list, and include a link to any other lists of Latin authors -- I think we do need to have at least one comprehensive (all-inclusive) list somewhere, even if not on this page.... Aristophanes68 (talk) 14:04, 17 April 2008 (UTC)

Infoboxes needed[edit]

I noticed that many of the authors listed on the page don't have infoboxes on their own page. If you come across one of these pages, either add the Template:Infobox_Writer template or add "|needs-infobox=yes" to the WPBIO project tag.... Aristophanes68 (talk) 19:44, 16 April 2008 (UTC)

Infoboxes are never "needed", actually. Above all, empty infoboxes are not building an encyclopedia. --Wetman (talk) 22:18, 20 April 2008 (UTC)
  • That may be, but the WPBIO project includes "|needs-infobox=" as one of their parameters. Besides, empty infoboxes are easily filled in by knowledgeable editors... Aristophanes68 (talk) 02:11, 21 April 2008 (UTC)..


Marcus Aurelius wrote in Greek, not Latin[edit]

Marcus Aurelius, who is listed under second century prose, does not belong in an article on Latin literature, since his Meditations were written in Greek. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:35, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

Expand tags[edit]

I'm not sure about the value of the "expand" tags (from Georgian and Serbo-Croatian). There are too many high-quality English-language sources on this topic to count. Would anyone be offended if I deleted them? The article needs some serious work, but by editors willing to read the standard histories of Latin literature in English, I'd think. Cynwolfe (talk) 21:56, 10 May 2011 (UTC)

The actual proportion of Latin literature that has been preserved is an important question that is not addressed in this article[edit]

I encourage anyone with knowledge and access to scholarly sources to write a paragraph about the important question of estimating how much of the whole corpus of Latin literature has actually been preserved. It is important for people to realize that this article is not so much about "Latin literature" as it is about "What we can know about Latin literature from the corpus that has been preserved and which is a small part of the entire corpus". I have the feeling that not many people realize that we have probably less than about 5 percent of the actual production of Latin literature (rough estimate) and that there is no reason to believe that what we have is the "best" or "most representative" part. Contact Basemetal here 12:26, 7 December 2013 (UTC)