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Mater'nus, Curia'tius

one of the speakers in the " Dialogus de Causis Corruptae Eloquentiae." From that piece we learn (cc. 2, 3, 11, 13) that, abandoning rhetorical studies, he had devoted himself with success to the composition of tragedies, that four of these were entitled Medea, Thyestes, Domitius, Cato, and that he had given offence to the ruling powers by the sentiments which he had expressed in the last named. From this circumstance we are led to conclude that he must be the same person with the Μάτξρνορ σοΦιστήρ, who, we are informed by Dio Cassius (67.12), was put to death by Domitian on account of his too great freedom of speech (παρρησιάν). A German scholar has recently endeavoured to prove that the Octavia found among the tragedies of Seneca, but generally considered as spurious, belongs to Maternus. (See "Octavia Praetextata Curiatio Materno Vindicata," ed. Fr. Ritter. 8vo. Bonn, 1843.)


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