After Life in Roman Paganism by Franz Valery Marie Cumont

By Franz Valery Marie Cumont

1922. Lectures brought at Yale college at the Silliman origin. the writer used to be invited to lecture at New Haven in the course of the month of March 1921 on an issue in relation to non secular heritage. He selected the guidelines present in Roman paganism about the lot of the soul after demise. Lectures integrated are: historic advent; after lifestyles within the tomb; the nether international; celestial immortality; profitable of immortality; premature loss of life; trip to the past; sufferings of hell and metempsychosis; felicity of the blessed.

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Thus the luminary of the night was the first dwelling of the Blessed, and there lay the Elysian Fields of the poets, Proserpina s kingdom where rest the shades. And the Fortunate Islands, of which the ancients s^ng, were no other than the sun and the moon, celestial lands 69 bathed by the waters of the ether. or was dissolved there, and moon in the The shade remained it came forth, or even reached whence sun to the rose reason pure the summit of the heavens where reigned the Most High. A help to that next Charon .

37 : . HISTORICAL INTRODUCTION 15 to which we will return in treating of the nether world. 38 These philosophers do indeed speak of Hades but, faithful to their habits, while they use traditional terms they give them a new meaning. " These gods and demons were, however, no more than personifications of the forces of nature. 40 ings. in states clearly The true Stoic doctrine is, then, that souls, when they leave the corpse, subsist in the atmosphere and especially in its highest 41 But after a longer part which touches the circle of the moon.

Bidez-Cumont). Cousin, Bull. corr. , XVI, 1897; cf. Usenet, Ehein. , N. , c. 428. GIL, XI, 856z=Biicheler, Carm. epigraphica, 191. AFTER LIFE 10 IN ROMAN PAGANISM 19 So man goes back to nothingness whence he went forth. It has been remarked that this epigraphic formula not; I do not care/ was engraved especially on the tombs of slaves, who had slight reason for attachment to life. Gladiators also adopted the sen tence these wretched men, who were to prove their indifference to death in the arena, were taught that it marked the destruction : and the term of their suffering.

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