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Archiv für Religionsgeschichte

Ed. by Bickel, Susanne / Frankfurter, David / Johnston, Sarah Iles / Pironti, Gabriella / Rüpke, Jörg / Scheid, John / Várhelyi, Zsuzsanna

Together with Beard, Mary / Bonnet, Corinne / Borgeaud, Philippe / Henrichs, Albert / Knysh, Alexander / Lissarrague, Francois / Malamoud, Charles / Maul, Stefan / Parker, Robert C. Y. / Shaked, Shaul / Stroumsa, Gedaliahu Guy / Tardieu, Michel / Volokhine, Youri

CiteScore 2018: 0.26

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2018: 0.132
Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) 2018: 0.435

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Cicero’s Theology and the Concept of Fate

Elisabeth Begemann
Published Online: 2014-03-26 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/arege-2013-0015


This article examines Cicero’s discussion of theology in the context of providing Rome with philosophical writings. I argue that in his treatises de natura deorum, de divinatione and de fato, Cicero conceptualized a traditional, idealized version of Roman theology under the premise that religio and cultus deorum are indispensable for a moral society as it is outlined in de re publica and de legibus. In continually stressing active divine participation in the lives of men, Cicero underlines the importance of goodwill between the divine and human spheres which finds expression in cultus deorum. As concepts such as Stoic fate run counter to the belief that the gods can be ritually influenced by prayer or ritual, the gods can neither be identified with fate itself nor be subject to it. Cicero rather stresses free will in all contexts to uphold the moral society, both human and divine.

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Published Online: 2014-03-26

Published in Print: 2014-03-01

Citation Information: Archiv für Religionsgeschichte, Volume 15, Issue 1, Pages 225–246, ISSN (Online) 1868-8888, ISSN (Print) 1436-3038, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/arege-2013-0015.

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