Martial | Criticism

This literature criticism consists of approximately 1 page of analysis & critique of Martial.
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SOURCE: "Chapter XIV" in The Life and Letters of Lord Macaulay, Harper & Brothers, 1877, p. 378.

In the following excerpt, dated 1857, from Macaulay's journal, the distinguished British statesman and historian records his generally disparaging appraisal of Martial. Though Macaulay remarks on the poet's lively imagery, he is deeply offended by Martial's obscenity and mendicancy.

… I have now gone through the first seven books of Martial, and have learned about three hundred and sixty of the best lines. His merit seems to me to lie, not in wit, but in the rapid succession of vivid images. I wish he were less nauseous. He is as great a beast as Aristophanes. He certainly is a very clever, pleasant writer. Sometimes he runs Catullus himself hard. But, besides his indecency, his servility and his mendicancy disgust me. In his position, for he was a Roman knight, something more like self-respect would have been...

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This section contains 210 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Thomas Babington Macaulay
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