'Many Cyruses': Xenophon's "Cyropaedia" and English Renaissance Humanism Reconsidered

Authors

  • Jane Grogan University College Dublin

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.14195/1984-249X_31_12

Keywords:

Cyropaedia, Xenophon, Humanism, English Renaissance, mirror for princes

Abstract

The reception history of a text is frequently at odds with its origins. Colin Burrow notes the irony that despite its loud support of those in power, Virgil’s Aeneid is taken up and translated by the disempowered during the Renaissance. The same is partly true of Xenophon’s Cyropaedia. This paper examines the place of the Cyropaedia within the English humanist tradition, focussing on English translations of the text, and its interpretation within the speculum principis (mirror-for-princes) tradition. This culminates in the moment when the reigning monarch, King James I of England, finds mirrored in the Cyropaedia an irresistible model of imperial kingship.

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References

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BARKER, W. (trad.) (1567). The VIII. bookes ofXenophon, containinge the institutio[n], schole, and edwation of Cyrus, the noble Kynge of Persye. Londres, Reynolde Wolfe.

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Published

2021-06-12

How to Cite

Grogan, J. (2021). ’Many Cyruses’: Xenophon’s "Cyropaedia" and English Renaissance Humanism Reconsidered. Revista Archai, (31). https://doi.org/10.14195/1984-249X_31_12

Issue

Section

Archai Dossier: Socratic Voices