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5 III: George Woudhuysen (University of Nottingham) & Justin Stover (University of Edinburgh), Sextus Aurelius Victor Reconsidered


In late antiquity, learned opinion was unanimous: the great historian of the fourth century was Sextus Aurelius Victor. This comes as something of a shock to modern readers of the inadequate De Caesaribus (so-called) which is what we understand to be Victor's work: a scrappy, often unintelligible, summary of Roman history from Augustus to A.D. This paper probes the different between what Victor's contemporaries thought and how we understand him today, taking a from-the-ground-up approach to ask fundamental questions about the historian and his work, the writing of history in late antiquity, and our understanding of its transmission.