Martianus Capella (1751 words)


During the transitional period from Late Antiquity to the Middle Ages, Martianus Capella composed the main textbook about the seven liberal arts that is transmitted from antiquity. This Latin encyclopedia in prose and verse was written in Carthage in modern Tunisia presumably between 475 (?) and 500 (?) CE. Subsequently, Martianus authored a short metrical treatise.

Very little is known about Martianus Capella since his own work is our main source of information about him. His difficult language and the poor transmission of his work present an additional obstacle to learn more about Martianus. His dates of birth and death as well as those of his active period are debated. The sources used by Martianus are not helpful, because …

Citation: Grebe, Sabine. "Martianus Capella". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 11 November 2009 [, accessed 20 June 2021.]

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