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ARTHIST 190|CL190 Sex, Lies & Politics in Ancient Rome: Suetonius & the 12 Caesars (Main)

Popular perceptions of Rome’s first twelve Caesars (who included Julius Caesar, Augustus, Caligula, Claudius, Nero, Vespasian, Titus and Domitian) are often fueled by the ancient biographer Suetonius’s lurid and scandalous accounts of the period. Suetoniu

Library Session on Sept 28, 2020


I. Introductions

II. Library Access Quiz

III. Review this libguide


Rose Library

  1. 64982  Le 
    antichita romane      Piranesi, Giovanni Battista         FOLIO 2018 20 V. 1                      

2.       64983  Ioannis Baptistae Piranesii antiquariorum regiae societatis Londinensis socii Campus                Piranesi, Giovanni Battista         FOLIO 2012 

  1. 4779     Della trasportatione dell'obelisco vaticano et delle fabriche di nostro signore Papa Sisto V                Fontana, Domenico,       DT62 .O2 F6 1590 FOLIO                          
  2. 48519  Colonna Traiana eretta dal Senato, e popolo romano all'imperatore Traiano Avgv        Bartoli, Pietro Santi        NA9340 .R8 B3 1673 FOLIO     
  3. 48520  Effigies antiquae Romae ex vestigiis aedificiorum ruinis testimonio veterum auctor    Ligorio, Pirro                G6714 .R7 L53 1773 FOLIO       

Primary vs Secondary

  • Primary sources are original materials that provide direct evidence or first-hand testimony concerning a topic or event -- firsthand records created by people who actually participated in or remembered an event and reported on the event and their reactions to it.
  • Primary sources can be contemporary sources created at the time when the event occurred (e.g., letters and newspaper articles) or later (such as, memoirs and oral history interviews).
  • Primary sources may be published or unpublished. Unpublished sources include unique materials (e.g., family papers) often referred to as archives and manuscripts.


Examples from the humanities:  

  • Art: painting, photograph, print, sculpture, film or other work of art, sketch book, architectural model or drawing, building or structure, letter,  organizational records, personal account by artist
  • History: artifact, diary, government report, interview, letter, map, news report, oral history, organizational records, photograph, speech, work of art
  • Literature: interview, letter, manuscript, personal account by writer, poem, work of fiction or drama, contemporary review
  • Music: score, sound recording, contemporary review, letter, personal account by composer or musician
  • Secondary sources are works that interpret, analyze, and discuss the evidence provided by primary sources (e.g., scholarly books and articles).
  • Secondary sources are generally a second-hand account or observation at least one step removed from the event, i.e., accounts written after the fact by people not present when an event took place. Such sources are second-hand interpretations of what occurred.
  • Secondary sources, however, can be considered to be primary sources depending on the context of their use. For example, Ken Burns' documentary of the Civil War is a secondary source for Civil War researchers (because it consists of Burns' interpretation of primary source materials from the Civil War), but a primary source for those studying documentary filmmaking.
  • Secondary sources benefit from the filter of time and differing cultural contexts and perspectives which may assist (or interfere with) scholarly analysis.