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By Danuta Shanzer, Ralph W. Mathisen

The most major differences of the Roman international in overdue Antiquity was once the combination of barbarian humans into the social, cultural, spiritual, and political milieu of the Mediterranean global. the character of those ameliorations was once thought of on the 6th biennial transferring Frontiers in past due Antiquity convention, on the college of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in March of 2005, and this quantity provides an up-to-date choice of the papers given on that celebration, complemented with a number of others. those 25 experiences do a lot to collapse outdated stereotypes concerning the cultural and social segregation of Roman and barbarian populations, and reveal that, opposite to the prior orthodoxy, Romans and barbarians interacted in a large number of the way, and it used to be not only barbarians who skilled 'ethnogenesis' or cultural assimilation. a similar Romans who disparaged barbarian habit additionally followed elements of it of their daily lives, delivering picture examples of the paradox and negotiation that characterised the mixing of Romans and barbarians, a strategy that altered the suggestions of id of either populations. the ensuing overdue old polyethnic cultural international, with cultural frontiers among Romans and barbarians that grew to become more and more permeable in either instructions, does a lot to assist clarify how the barbarian payment of the west was once entire with less disruption than there could have been, and the way barbarian populations have been built-in seamlessly into the outdated Roman international.

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Additional info for Romans, Barbarians, and the Transformation of the Roman World: Cultural Interaction and the Creation of Identity in Late Antiquity

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The names blare out29 a call to arms, and the savagery of barbarity evokes dread through their very names. ”30 But Victor of Vita, in his late fifth-century depiction of the Vandals of Africa, perhaps put it best: “Study their name and understand their character: could they be called by any name other than barbarians? ”32 The seemingly inexhaustible list of invaders only intensified the sense of threat; the Augustan History continued, “Finally, diverse Halamannos, Tubantes? bellicum strepunt nomina, et immanitas barbariae in ipsis vocabu­ lis adhibet horrorem.

Later Christian writers also laid claim to catalogues of barbarian peoples. 51 Jerome wrote to Laeta, “From India, from Persia, and from Ethiopia we welcomed crowds of monks every hour. 53 This last example in particular demonstrates the degree to which the Roman catalogue tradition had been assimilated into Christian idelogy. Roots in Reality But, turning from the literary to the real world, to what degree, one might ask, did these lists represent the presence of actual peoples bearing these names?

Hisp. Etym. Vit. vand. 62, M. 102–103: “Discutite nomen et intelle­gite mores. Aurel. e. ” For the Costobocs, see also Brown in this volume. ”33 This last passage also reprises the tendency to create taxonomies of barbarian peoples, with smaller groups being subsumed into larger ones, thus creating a polyethnic identity for larger, more inclusive groups. In the early fifth century, the drumbeat continued. 36 Late Roman emperors were triumphally portrayed as victors over the same catalogues of barbarians that threatened imperial security.

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