By Hans Peter L'Orange
In this research, initially released in Norway as Fra Principat Til Dominat, Professor L'Orange units down the essence of his idea at the an important interval of transition from decentralization to standardization in civic and cultural life-a interval now not not like our own.
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Extra resources for Art Forms and Civic Life in the Late Roman Empire
Fields of classical art, in sculpture as well as in architecture (pp. ). A cotnpletely new aesthetic was developed during the third century: beauty does not re- 27 16. Procession of figures. Detail of a relief on the Ara Pacis, Rome side in the proportions of the body, but in the soul which penetrates and illuminates it, that is, · in expression (the Enneads of Plotinus). Beauty is a function of the inner being (TO ev8ov ei8o~). Also on the ethical level we are dealing with a revaluation and transformation of the classical attitude to life, an Umwertung aller W erte.
The abdication of Diocletian is described by Lactantius. On May 1, 305, we read, the eastern armies, together with representatives from the whole imperial army, are deployed upon a hill near Diocletian's residence, Nicomedia in Asia Minor, on the exact spot where Diocletian had bestowed the purple upon his eastern co-Emperor, Galerius. Upon this hill was erected a column crowned by a statue of Jupiter, the god-protector of Diocletian's whole order of state. Diocletian ascends the tribunal. In tears he addresses the army: his work is completed, he wishes to relinquish his power.
The whole rule of Diocletian is characteristically framed by these two acts of state. A brief description of them may, therefore, serve as an introduction to this study of Diocletian's reforms. D. 284, the Roman armies under Emperor Numerian were marching home from a Persian campaign. The Emperor, suffering from an eye infection, was carried in a sedan-chair which concealed him from sight. He was accompanied by his father-in-law, Aper, prefect of the Praetorian Guard. One day a macabre stench emanated from the royal sedan-chair, and soon the whole army knew that it was occupied by a corpse.
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