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"Quintilian began the Inst. Or. in 91-93"
Overview of Institutio Oratoria
I've added an overview of all twelve books. Tried to incorporate the key themes/passages, but if anyone has anything to contribute or clarify, please do so! The two sections following my overview, "Quintilian on Rhetoric" and "Quintilian on Education," now seem to overlap a bit with some of my information. Perhaps we could reposition some of this text into the overview? It might be simpler that way. (Khaushee (talk) 17:19, 4 May 2011 (UTC))
Placement of Quintilian's Rhetoric
As I was adding this section, I realized that some information is repeated in the "Quintilian on Rhetoric" section. My idea was to define Q's rhetoric, placing it alongside Cicero, Plato, Aristotle, and Isocrates for comparison purposes. This kind of comparison is very helpful to college rhetoric students (I being one of them). (Khaushee (talk) 17:19, 4 May 2011 (UTC))
Ernst Robert Curtius on Quintilian
European Literature and the Latin Middle Ages p. 436:
Quintilian's influence during the Middle Ages is far greater than the notices make it appear. Inasmuch as the Institutio is a draft for the education of an ideal man, it can be compared with Castiglione's Cortegiano (1528). "The harmonious rounding out of the intellectual life" which Burckhardt found characteristic of the Renaissance ideal of the uomo universale is also alive in Quintilian. The art of speaking is "the most precious gift of the gods," and for that very reason it is the perfection of the human mind. "Ipsam igitur orandi maiestatem, qua nihil dii immortales melius homini dederunt et qua remota muta sunt omnia et luce praesenti ac memoria posteritatis carent, toto animo petamus" (XII, 11, 30). Certainly the goal is high and hard to reach. But has not man learned to cross seas, to understand the course of the stars, to measure the universe? These arts are even harder, yet in value they are far inferior to eloquence (minores sed difficiliores artes" : XII, 11, 10) : I know few utterances which so sharply illuminate the contrast between the antique and modern hierarchy of goods as these sentences. Without them we should not understand why for Quintilian the ideal orator is also the ideal man. Cicero, to be sure, had preceded him: he had undertaken to sketch the perfect orator in his Orator. But his picture was too obviously accommodated to his own personality and too specialized, too dependent, that is on the arts dicendi. When, then, in the twelfth book of his work, Quintilian approaches the same task—"ad partem operis destinati longe gravissimam"—he can say that he feels like a solitary sailor driven out into the main sea—"caelum undique et undique pontus." To be sure, he sees Cicero in the vast immensity—and Cicero alone. But even Cicero now takes in his sails, rows more slowly, and contents himself with discussing the kind of eloquence suitable for the perfect orator. So he, Quintilian, has no predecessor whose course he can follow. He must find his way and pursue it as far as the subject demands. --Curtius, European Literature and the Latin Middle Ages (Princeton , 1973), p. 436.
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