Lucius Annaeus Seneca: De Brevitate Vitae [On the Shortness of Life] (2594 words)

De Brevitate Vitae (“On the Shortness of Life” and DBV thereafter) is the ninth of Seneca’s twelve books that have been transmitted under the name of dialogi by the Codex Ambrosianus. This manuscript in Beneventan script was produced in Cassino after 1075 CE and derives from an exemplar of late antiquity, possibly also originating in southern Italy.


The addressee of DBV is mentioned right at the beginning of the dialogue (1.1) with the vocative Pauline. The man has been identified as the eques Pompeius Paulinus of Arles, father of Pompeia Paulina, Seneca’s wife (Tacitus, Ann. 15.60.4 and Seneca, Ep. 104.1.2), and of a younger Pompeius Paulinus who …

Gazzarri, Tommaso. "De Brevitate Vitae". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 26 October 2015
[, accessed 22 August 2019.]

Save this article

If you need to create a new bookshelf to save this article in, please make sure that you are logged in, then go to your 'Account' here.