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The Idea of the Library in the Ancient World$
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Yun Lee Too

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199577804

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199577804.001.0001

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The Library of Universal History: Diodorus Siculus and Literary Cosmopolitanism

The Library of Universal History: Diodorus Siculus and Literary Cosmopolitanism

Chapter:
(p.143) 5 The Library of Universal History: Diodorus Siculus and Literary Cosmopolitanism
Source:
The Idea of the Library in the Ancient World
Author(s):

Yun Lee Too

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199577804.003.0006

Chapter 5 considers another book that calls itself a library, the Library of History of Diodorus Siculus. Here the book has a particular world view, which demonstrates that the library may have a particular function in the world. Diodorus espouses a cosmopolitanism that sees all history and all mankind as inextricably linked, with harmony as the ideal and enmity as a non‐ideal. This is the substance of his narrative. At the centre of this cosmopolitan paradigm is Rome, which accepts everyone into itself and governs other nations peacefully. The Library of History is a work that draws together humanity and its experiences of justice and injustice, kindness and cruelty, as the inhabitants of a single, ‘civic’ community.

Keywords:   cosmopolitanism, Diodorus Siculus, the Library of History, Rome, justice, civic community

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