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date: 22 September 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter deals with the role and function of Neo-Latin language and literature (and its constant recourse to the classical tradition) as an instrument of political power, more specifically for the representation, negotiation, and legitimization of political power. Renaissance humanists were privileged propagators of political power because of their specific linguistic, literary, and scholarly expertise, variously made serviceable for political action. They exploited Latin prose style and classical learning as instruments of early modern political discourse through literary imitation, especially of Cicero and Tacitus, philological scholarship, especially commentaries on Sallust and Tacitus, and antiquarian studies, which could help construct political lineages going back to ancient Rome, particularly in the context of monarchical absolutism. In addition, they used their literary and rhetorical prowess to fashion political communication in a wide range of literary genres, both in poetry and in prose.

Keywords: politics, power, ideology, communication, counsel, epideixis

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