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Youth in the Roman Empire
The Young and the Restless Years?


  • Date Published: March 2017
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107626720

£ 22.99

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About the Authors
  • Modern society has a negative view of youth as a period of storm and stress, but at the same time cherishes the idea of eternal youth. How does this compare with ancient Roman society? Did a phase of youth exist there with its own characteristics? How was youth appreciated? This book studies the lives and the image of youngsters (around 15–25 years of age) in the Latin West and the Greek East in the Roman period. Boys and girls of all social classes come to the fore; their lives, public and private, are sketched with the help of a range of textual and documentary sources, while the authors also employ the results of recent neuropsychological research. The result is a highly readable and wide-ranging account of how the crucial transition between childhood and adulthood operated in the Roman world.

    • Gives the reader an up-to-date overview of the lives of Roman boys and girls, with new views on many debated topics
    • Fully discusses for the first time the impact of Christianity and the Christian Church on youth
    • Employs a wide range of different kinds of textual and documentary sources, some newly published, and a range of methodological approaches drawing on sociology, anthropology and neuropsychology
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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 2017
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107626720
    • length: 280 pages
    • dimensions: 230 x 153 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.42kg
    • contains: 7 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Questioning the concept of youth
    2. Minority, majority: youth, divisions of the human life course and Roman law
    3. Terminology and characteristics of youth
    4. Rites of transition
    5. Youth and ancient medicine
    6. Youth and education: the rhetor and 'university'
    7. Associations of adolescent youths
    8. Youthful behaviour
    9. Youths in public offices
    10. Occupational training
    11. Marriage
    12. Youth and Christianity: continuity or change?

  • Authors

    Christian Laes, Vrije Universiteit Brussel
    Christian Laes is Associate Professor of Latin and Ancient History at Vrije Universiteit Brussel and the University of Antwerp. He has published five monographs and over fifty international contributions on social history, especially the human life course in Roman antiquity. Childhood, youth, old age, marriage and sexuality as well as disabilities are the main focuses of his scholarly work. His book Children in the Roman Empire was published by Cambridge University Press in 2011.

    Johan Strubbe, Rijksuniversiteit Leiden, The Netherlands
    Johan Strubbe was formerly Senior Lecturer in the Department of Ancient History at Rijksuniversiteit Leiden, The Netherlands. In his research he has focused on the Greek epigraphy of Asia Minor, and published many articles on social and economic subjects; he has also published two corpora of Greek inscriptions. His second long-standing interest is in children and youth in ancient society and he has published several articles, for example on consolation decrees for youngsters and on public offices held by young people.

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