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Between Geography and History: Hellenistic Constructions of by Katherine Clarke

By Katherine Clarke

The Roman empire significantly affected geographical conceptions, evoking new methods of describing the earth and of creating its historical past. This ebook explores the writings of 3 literary figures of the age--Polybius, Posidonius, and Strabo--and how they used and remodeled pre-existing Greek traditions as a way to describe the hot global of Rome.

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However, the 'space : time' model also reveals the importance of experienced time and space. T h i s is confirmed by analysis of the 'present : past' model. It emerges that both the concern of geography with the past and that of history with the present may be partially understood in terms of the fact that geography and history describe the world as it is actually experienced. H u m a n life takes place in or against the matrices of time and space simultaneously, making discussion of them as distinct entities strained.

106 See Gurevich, Categories of Medieval Culture, 68, for local 'universal' histories. D. S. Levene, 'Sallust's Jugurtha: An "Historical Fragment" ', JRS 82 (1992), 53-70, explores the similar notion that a monograph of apparently restricted chronological scope could be written as a conscious part of a larger whole. 107 See C. W. Fornara, The Nature of History in Ancient Greece and Rome (Berkeley, 1983), 351(18 Smalley, Historians in the Middle Ages, 30. 109 See D. A. Russell and N. G . ), Menander Rhetor (Oxford, 1981), 346.

6 4 T h i s , however, does not alter the fact that the cartographer or literary geographer makes decisions of selection and presentation, which render objectivity an impossibility. So, both map-maker and map-reader must interpret, and the map itself is both subjective in this respect and objective in so far as it purports to represent reality. 65 A n important feature of medieval maps is that they did not attempt to present a view of space from one fixed, external position, but rather gave a sense of space as it was experienced by someone travelling around.

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