By Gerhard Oestreich
Neostoicism was once some of the most vital highbrow routine of the 16th and 17th centuries. It begun within the Protestant Netherlands in the course of the insurrection opposed to Catholic Spain. in a short time it all started to steer either the speculation and perform of politics in lots of components of Europe. It proved to be really worthwhile and acceptable to the early sleek militaristic states; for, at the foundation of the nonetheless more often than not permitted humanistic values of classical antiquity, it promoted a powerful critical energy within the country, raised above the conflicting doctrines of the theologians. routinely, a superb a part of Neostoic writing used to be thinking about the nationally equipped army associations of the nation. Its target used to be the overall development of social self-discipline and the schooling of the citizen to either the workout and reputation of paperwork, managed fiscal existence and a wide military.
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Horace rightly said Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori. But he said 'die', not 'lament'. We must be good citizens in order to be good men (boni viri). Our true country is still heaven. The communal state arises from the gregarious instinct, usefulness, and love of self (amor privatus). In the thirteenth chapter of the first book the main battle against the mala publica is joined. Lipsius wishes to establish four theses: first, that 21 Justus Lipsius and the Netherlands movement the terrible times are sent by God; secondly, that they are unavoidable and determined by fate; thirdly, that they are useful to us; fourthly, that they are neither grave nor new.
The individual is a member of a community, his country. This community must be loved and defended by its citizens. But the political community is not something that lasts for ever: it too is subject to the natural law of change, of growth and decline. Just as states and empires are born, grow and flourish, so too they perish. This harks back to the 1 2 L. Zanta, La Renaissance du stoicisme au XVIe siecle, Paris 1914. H. Glaesener, 'Juste Lipse et Guillaume du Vair', Revue beige de philologie et d'histoire 17 (1938) 27-42.
Riistow, Ortsbestimmung der Gegenwart. Eine universalgeschichtliche Kulturkritik, vol. n, Erlenbach-Ziirich 1951, pp. 377f. See R. Newald, 'Nachleben der Antike' in Jfahresbericht iiber die Fortschritte der klassischen Altertumswissenschaft, vol. 232 (1931) for 1920-9; vol. 250 (1935) for 1930-4. See also the two volumes of the Kulturwissenschaftliche Bibliographie zum Nachleben der Antike edited by the Warburg Library (1934 and 1938), the second under the title A Bibliography of the Survival of the Classics.