Démosthène Demosthenes Demosthenem
Plutarch drew attention in his Life of Demosthenes to the strong similarities between the personalities and careers of Demosthenes and Marcus Tullius Cicero: The divine power seems originally to have designed Demosthenes and Cicero upon the same plan, giving them many similarities in their natural characters, as their passion for distinction and their love of liberty in civil life, and their want of courage in dangers and war, and at the same time also to have added many accidental resemblances.


QuintillianMarcus Fabius Quintilianus Quintilian
Marcus Fabius Quintilianus ( 35 – 100 AD) was a Roman educator and rhetorician from Hispania, widely referred to in medieval schools of rhetoric and in Renaissance writing. In English translation, he is usually referred to as Quintilian, although the alternate spellings of Quintillian and Quinctilian are occasionally seen, the latter in older texts. Quintilian was born c. 35 in Calagurris (Calahorra, La Rioja) in Hispania. His father, a well-educated man, sent him to Rome to study rhetoric early in the reign of Nero. While there, he cultivated a relationship with Domitius Afer, who died in 59.


Desiderius ErasmusErasmus of RotterdamErasmian
The Ciceronianus came out in 1528, attacking the style of Latin that was based exclusively and fanatically on Cicero's writings. Etienne Dolet wrote a riposte titled Erasmianus in 1535. Erasmus's last major work, published the year of his death, is the Ecclesiastes or "Gospel Preacher" (Basel, 1536), a massive manual for preachers of around a thousand pages.


Aristotle (general article) · Aristotle in the Renaissance · Biology · Causality · Commentators on Aristotle · Ethics · Logic · Mathematics · Metaphysics · Natural philosophy · Non-contradiction · Political theory · Psychology · Rhetoric. Collections of works. At Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Perseus Project at Tufts University. At the University of Adelaide. P. Remacle. The 11-volume 1837 Bekker edition of Aristotle's Works in Greek ( PDF· DJVU). Bekker's Prussian Academy of Sciences edition of the complete works: - - - -.


Lat.Latin languagelat
The Renaissance briefly reinforced the position of Latin as a spoken language by its adoption by the Renaissance Humanists. Often led by members of the clergy, they were shocked by the accelerated dismantling of the vestiges of the classical world and the rapid loss of its literature. They strove to preserve what they could and restore Latin to what it had been and introduced the practice of producing revised editions of the literary works that remained by comparing surviving manuscripts.


dialoguesPlato's dialoguesPlatonic dialogue
During the Renaissance, with the general resurgence of interest in classical civilization, knowledge of Plato's philosophy would become widespread again in the West. Many of the greatest early modern scientists and artists who broke with Scholasticism and fostered the flowering of the Renaissance, with the support of the Plato-inspired Lorenzo (grandson of Cosimo), saw Plato's philosophy as the basis for progress in the arts and sciences. His political views, too, were well-received: the vision of wise philosopher-kings of the Republic matched the views set out in works such as Machiavelli's The Prince.

Middle Ages

medievalmediaevalmedieval period
This is a legacy from both the Renaissance and Enlightenment when scholars favourably contrasted their intellectual cultures with those of the medieval period. Renaissance scholars saw the Middle Ages as a period of decline from the high culture and civilisation of the Classical world; Enlightenment scholars saw reason as superior to faith, and thus viewed the Middle Ages as a time of ignorance and superstition. Others argue that reason was generally held in high regard during the Middle Ages.


Protagoras of Abdera
The deliberate destruction of his works also is mentioned by Cicero. The classicist John Burnet doubts this account, however, as both Diogenes Laërtius and Cicero wrote hundreds of years later and as no such persecution of Protagoras is mentioned by contemporaries who make extensive references to this philosopher. Burnet notes that even if some copies of the Protagoras books were burned, enough of them survived to be known and discussed in the following century. A claim has been made that Protagoras is better classified as an atheist, since he held that if something is not able to be known it does not exist.


Admired and popularly imitated writers such as Lucian also adopted Atticism, so that the style survived until the Renaissance, when it was taken up by non-Greek students of Byzantine expatriates. Renaissance scholarship, the basis of modern scholarship in the west, nurtured strong Classical and Attic views, continuing Atticism for another four centuries.

Ancient Greek philosophy

Greek philosopherGreekGreek philosophers
It dealt with a wide variety of subjects, including astronomy, mathematics, political philosophy, ethics, metaphysics, ontology, logic, biology, rhetoric and aesthetics. Greek philosophy has influenced much of Western culture since its inception. Alfred North Whitehead once noted: "The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato". Clear, unbroken lines of influence lead from ancient Greek and Hellenistic philosophers to Early Islamic philosophy, the European Renaissance and the Age of Enlightenment.

Rhetorica ad Herennium

Ad Herenniumpseudo-Ciceronian ''Rhetorica ad HerenniumRethorica ad Erennium
The Rhetorica ad Herennium (Rhetoric: For Herennius), formerly attributed to Cicero or Cornificius, but in fact of unknown authorship, sometimes ascribed to an unnamed doctor, is the oldest surviving Latin book on rhetoric, dating from the late 80s BC, and is still used today as a textbook on the structure and uses of rhetoric and persuasion. The Rhetorica ad Herennium was addressed to Gaius Herennius (otherwise unknown). The Rhetorica remained the most popular book on rhetoric during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. It was commonly used, along with Cicero's De Inventione, to teach rhetoric, and over one hundred manuscripts are extant.

Ancient Rome

The latter groups supported the Catilinarian conspiracy—a resounding failure, since the consul Marcus Tullius Cicero quickly arrested and executed the main leaders of the conspiracy. Onto this turbulent scene emerged Gaius Julius Caesar, from an aristocratic family of limited wealth. His aunt Julia was Marius' wife, and Caesar identified with the populares. To achieve power, Caesar reconciled the two most powerful men in Rome: Marcus Licinius Crassus, who had financed much of his earlier career, and Crassus' rival, Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus (anglicized as Pompey), to whom he married his daughter.

Public speaking

public speakerspeakeroratory
Instruction in rhetoric developed into a full curriculum, including instruction in grammar (study of the poets), preliminary exercises (progymnasmata), and preparation of public speeches (declamation) in both forensic and deliberative genres. The Latin style of rhetoric was heavily influenced by Cicero and involved a strong emphasis on a broad education in all areas of humanistic study in the liberal arts, including philosophy. Other areas of study included the use of wit and humor, the appeal to the listener's emotions, and the use of digressions.

Poggio Bracciolini

PoggioBracciolini, Poggio
Oppel, The moral basis of Renaissance politics : a study of the humanistic political and social philosophy of Poggio Bracciolini, 1380-1459 (Ph.D. thesis, Princeton Un., 1972). Nancy S. Struever, The Language of history in the Renaissance : rhetoric and historical consciousness in Florentine Humanism (Princeton Un. Press, 1970). A. C. de la Mare, ''The handwriting of Italian humanists / Vol. I, fasc. 1, Francesco Petrarca, Giovanni Boccaccio, Coluccio Salutati, Niccolò Niccoli, Poggio Bracciolini, Bartolomeo Aragazzi of Montepulciano, Sozomeno of Pistoia, Giorgio Antonio Vespucci'' (Oxford University Press, 1973).

William Shakespeare

English Renaissance theatre. Spelling of Shakespeare's name. World Shakespeare Bibliography. Internet Shakespeare Editions. Folger Digital Texts. Open Source Shakespeare complete works, with search engine and concordance. First Four Folios at Miami University Library, digital collection. The Shakespeare Quartos Archive. Shakespeare's sonnets, poems, and texts at Shakespeare's Words the online version of the best selling glossary and language companion. Shakespeare and Music. Shakespeare's Will from The National Archives. Discovering Literature: Shakespeare at the British Library. William Shakespeare at the British Library.

Marshall McLuhan

McLuhanMarshal McLuhanhot and cool media
McLuhan's 1942 Cambridge University doctoral dissertation surveys the history of the verbal arts (grammar, logic, and rhetoric—collectively known as the trivium) from the time of Cicero down to the time of Thomas Nashe. In his later publications, McLuhan at times uses the Latin concept of the trivium to outline an orderly and systematic picture of certain periods in the history of Western culture. McLuhan suggests that the Late Middle Ages, for instance, were characterized by the heavy emphasis on the formal study of logic. The key development that led to the Renaissance was not the rediscovery of ancient texts but a shift in emphasis from the formal study of logic to rhetoric and grammar.

Liberal arts education

liberal artsArtsliberal studies
The first recorded use of the term "liberal arts" (artes liberales) occurs in De Inventione by Marcus Tullius Cicero, but it is unclear if he created the term. Seneca the Younger discusses liberal arts in education from a critical Stoic point of view in Moral Epistles. The exact classification of the liberal arts varied however in Roman times, and it was only after Martianus Capella in the 5th century AD influentially brought the seven liberal arts as bridesmaids to the Marriage of Mercury and Philology, that they took on canonical form. The four 'scientific' artes – music, arithmetic, geometry and astronomy (or astrology) – were known from the time of Boethius onwards as the quadrivium.


Rhetoric. Conférence du barreau de Paris. Figures of Speech. Abraham Lincoln's Lost Speech. Modern parliamentary eloquence; the Rede lecture, delivered before the University of Cambridge, 6 November 1913 by George Curzon, 1st Marquess Curzon of Kedleston.

Classical Latin

Titus Pomponius Atticus (112/109 – 35/32), publisher and correspondent of Cicero. Marcus Tullius Cicero (106–43 BC), orator, philosopher, essayist, whose works define golden Latin prose and are used in Latin curricula beyond the elementary level. Servius Sulpicius Rufus (106–43 BC), jurist, poet. Decimus Laberius (105–43 BC), writer of mimes. Marcus Furius Bibaculus (1st century BC), writer of ludicra. Gaius Julius Caesar (103–44 BC), general, statesman, historian. Gaius Oppius (1st century BC), secretary to Julius Caesar, probable author under Caesar's name. Gaius Matius (1st century BC), public figure, correspondent with Cicero. Cornelius Nepos (100–24 BC), biographer.


Polyhymnia or Polymnia (the '[singer] of many hymns'): muse of sacred song, oratory, lyric, singing, and rhetoric. Terpsichore (the '[one who] delights in dance'): muse of choral song and dance. Thalia (the 'blossoming one'): muse of comedy and bucolic poetry.

Inductive reasoning

inductioninductiveinductive logic
For a move from particular to universal, Aristotle in the 300s BCE used the Greek word epagogé, which Cicero translated into the Latin word inductio. In the 300s CE, Sextus Empiricus maintained that all knowledge derives from sensory experience—concluded in his Outlines of Pyrrhonism that acceptance of universal statements as true cannot be justified by induction.