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The Matter of the Gods – Religion and the Roman Empire - California Scholarship Online
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The Matter of the Gods: Religion and the Roman Empire

Clifford Ando and Berhane Asfaw


What did the Romans know about their gods? Why did they perform the rituals of their religion, and what motivated them to change those rituals? To these questions the book proposes simple answers: In contrast to ancient Christians, who had faith, Romans had knowledge, and their knowledge was empirical in orientation. In other words, the Romans acquired knowledge of the gods through observation of the world, and their rituals were maintained or modified in light of what they learned. After a preface and opening chapters that lay out this argument about knowledge and place it in context, the boo ... More

Keywords: religion, Roman empire, Romans, gods, rituals, knowledge

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2008 Print ISBN-13: 9780520250833
Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012 DOI:10.1525/california/9780520250833.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Clifford Ando, author

Berhane Asfaw, editor

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