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Tacitus on Western 'Enlightenment'

Reader comment on item: Turkey: An Ally No More
in response to reader comment: Tacitus on Turkishness

Submitted by Turk (Turkey), Jan 31, 2010 at 18:06

It is interesting - beside your mastery of Latin - how Tacitus - a staunch Roman could ever identify himself with the speech of the barbarian who was fighting against his own father-in-law Agricola? What the barbarian said about the Romans and what the Romans all stood for are two different things and nobody knew it better than Tacitus.It is the barbarians that were involved in incessant robbery, butchery and rapine. The Romans always put an end to that.They brought Roman Law, built roads and introduced higher culture and institutions to these woodlands and marshes and deserts.Your conclusion is premature and wrong then, Turk, and you'll definitely need to peruse the whole life of Agricola and other works of Tacitus (although I am sure you'll never do ) to see that Tacitus had no doubts about the superiority of the Roman civilization over illiterate barbarity of the Celts with their human sacrifices and mad druidism - the ancient fanatical cult comparable to to Islam.Anyway, what Tacitus puts in the mouth of Galgacus exactly prevailed in Britain after the fall of Rome- some 400 years later with the new age of barbarity in the island and an unparalleled cultural regress and decay.

"But there are no tribes beyond us, nothing indeed but waves and rocks, and the yet more terrible Romans, from whose oppression escape is vainly sought by obedience and submission. Robbers of the world, having by their universal plunder exhausted the land, they rifle the deep. If the enemy be rich, they are rapacious; if he be poor, they lust for dominion; neither the east nor the west has been able to satisfy them. Alone among men they covet with equal eagerness poverty and riches. To robbery, slaughter, plunder, they give the lying name of empire; they make a desert and call it peace." Chapter 30 , Agricola by Tacitus..

Above are the last few sentences of Calgacus' speech made to his warriors prior battle of Mons Graupius in either AD83 or 84.

Even Tacitus describes Calgacus as "the most distinguished for birth and valour among the chieftains" and admires him , but without having a single clue , you are reverting with a strange , superficial and funny statement asking 'How Tacitus could identify himself with the speech of the barbarian who was fighting against his own father-in-law Agricola'and jumping to druidism , consequently trying to create a cripled analogy between with Druidism and Islam.(!)

And this is what exactly I was trying to tell to you in my comment with quotation from Tacitus , this was a reply to your statements blabering about your 'untouchable, civilized angels' like Romans and Byzantines , and perception of the same by some others whom you claim to be 'Barbarians' but whose 'devastative' sentences like above, clearly expressing his point of view , are still alive even today.

Tacitus, Agricola, Dominiatus are only known by a handfull of people now , but the last sentence of Calgacus 'They make a desert and they call it peace' is still everywhere. This is the biggest victory of the 'barbarian Calgacus'

Meantime you may like to know ; Agricola was against the invasion of Britain and was called back to Rome immediately after the Battle at Mons Graupinus. Tacitus always emphasized the honesty,loyalty , determination of Agricola, his father in Law, against despot Emperor Dominiatus. His book was only 'published' after AD 96 following the assasination of Dominiatus and change of the regyme. So dont give me that 'Staunch Roman' argument, for this specific period.

Mutatis mutandis Tacitus' quote is fully applicable to Islamic barbarity and the Turks. What is more, Tacitus has even something valuable to say about today's Kemalism and Turkishness. Idque apud imperitos humanitas vocabatur, cum pars servitutis esset. "Because they didn't know better, they called it 'civilization,' when it was part of their slavery."(Ibidem)

Huh ! This quote is used by Tacitus to describe Britain after the Roman invasion describing their slavery , and now you are distoring the meaning , trying to use it against Turkishness ?

Inde etiam habitus nostri honor et frequens toga; paulatimque discessum ad delenimenta vitiorum, porticus et balinea et convivorum elegantiam. Idque apud imperitos humanitas vocabatur, cum pars servitutis esset..

'They adopted our dressing fashion, and begun wearing the togas ; little by little they were drawn to touches such as colonnades, baths, and elegant talks. Because they didn't know better, they called it 'civilization,' when it was part of their slavery"

It supports my argument indeed , It is a quote to be used against Western Imprealism you are trying to present under 'enlightenment' BS, not Turkishness.. You are scraping the previous part of the text , changing all the meaning and presenting the same as if it supports your argument. Something you always do , something you master in.

Additionally , I felt like hearing ' Today's Kemalofascism or Islamo Turko Barbarity' kind of juvenile YouTubish Trivia , I would go and comment on YT instead of coming to this forum.

I already told you not to waste my time , please don't…

Submitting....

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