CLASSICS 365
TRUE CONFESSIONS—THE (AUTO)BIOGRAPHICAL TRADITION
Assignment for Suetonius:  The Lost Preface 
Due:  Monday, 5 October by 6:00 p.m. (see Format, below)
Click here to see the completed assignment.

As we have discussed, Suetonius' introductory book to the Twelve Caesars lacks an introduction, beginning rather abruptly with the death of Julius Caesar's father.

For this assignment you will reconstruct the lost introduction based on your readings of Suetonius.  In two to three paragraphs, write what you think S. would or should have written to preface his work.  Bonus points for working in a dedication to Septicius Clarus, Suetonius' friend, patron, and the Prefect of the Praetorians under Hadrian.

Historiographers of antiquity were acutely aware of the importance of the preface.  For your consultation I have placed on my door a selection of prefaces to five different ancient histories (none of them biographies), which together provide a decent idea of how authors introduced their works.

Remember that you are writing as Suetonius, and are leaving a legacy for future generations of readers.  You should therefore take into account such issues as what you are writing about, why you are writing, and what makes your work unique.


Format.  Electronic submissions only, as I am posting to the course web site.  Please note the due date once more:  Monday, 28 September, by 6:00 p.m.  I will not accept late submissions.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact me.