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The Murder of Regilla
     

The Murder of Regilla

by Sarah B Pomeroy
 

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Born to an illustrious Roman family in 125 BCE, Regilla was married at the age of fifteen to Herodes, a wealthy Greek. Twenty years later--and eight months pregnant with her sixth child--Regilla died under mysterious circumstances, after a blow to the abdomen delivered by Herodes's freedman. Though Herodes was charged, he was acquitted. Pomeroy's investigation

Overview

Born to an illustrious Roman family in 125 BCE, Regilla was married at the age of fifteen to Herodes, a wealthy Greek. Twenty years later--and eight months pregnant with her sixth child--Regilla died under mysterious circumstances, after a blow to the abdomen delivered by Herodes's freedman. Though Herodes was charged, he was acquitted. Pomeroy's investigation suggests that despite Herodes's erection of numerous monuments to his deceased wife, he was in fact guilty of the crime.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

In one of the great scandals of second-century Greece, Regilla, the pregnant Roman wife of Greek philosopher and rhetorician Herodes, died from a blow to the abdomen. Drawing on archeological and textual evidence, Pomeroy (Goddesses, Whores, Wives and Slaves) carefully reconstructs Regilla's life, her eventual murder and Herodes's trial and acquittal, splendidly recreating the Greek culture of A.D. 160 and its attitudes around class, culture and sex. An upper-class woman with some schooling and exposure to the cultural affairs of her husband, Regilla owned her own property, which became a sore spot in her marriage. In other ways, though, she was hardly unique. Regilla likely could not communicate well in Greek, nor could she match wits with her husband. She married at 15, died at about 35 and ably performed the primary duty of a wife in the Roman Empire: bearing children. Numerous illustrations and quotations lend depth to Pomeroy's masterful depiction of second-century Greece and the tragic portrait of a woman whose story has been lost to history until now. Illus. (Sept. 25)

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New Yorker

[Pomeroy] provides an absorbing analysis of justice, society, culture, and customs in the second-century Roman Empire.

Times Literary Supplement

Sarah B. Pomeroy's passionate account in The Murder of Regilla, following her from birth to death, is a sharp reminder of the brutally blunt edges of gender inequality.
Joy Connolly

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674042209
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
06/30/2009
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
264
File size:
533 KB

What People are Saying About This

Sarah Pomeroy has been one of the most influential voices in the study of women in antiquity. It's good to find her now turning to the multi-cultural world of Greece under the Roman Empire--and to a nasty case of domestic murder.
Barbara Levick
A bold and well-informed first history of Regilla herself. Pomeroy is supremely well qualified to assess literary, epigraphic, architectural, and sculptural evidence. Her dramatic narrative and sympathetic presentation afford a gripping read.
Barbara Levick, Oxford University
Mary Lefkowitz
A fascinating and vivid portrait, by one of the greatest authorities on ancient women. Drawing on a wide variety of ancient sources, Pomeroy enables us to see Regilla in her complex and dangerous environment. An informative and accessible introduction to the world of the second century AD.
Mary Lefkowitz, Wellesley College
Mary Beard
Sarah Pomeroy has been one of the most influential voices in the study of women in antiquity. It's good to find her now turning to the multi-cultural world of Greece under the Roman Empire--and to a nasty case of domestic murder.
Mary Beard, Cambridge University
Jo Ann Kay McNamara
Imaginatively deploying sparse and disparate sources, Pomeroy has constructed a dazzling mosaic, setting the biography of a unique woman into the little-known world of second century Roman Greece.
Jo Ann Kay McNamara, author of Sisters in Arms: Catholic Nuns through Two Millennia

Meet the Author

Sarah B. Pomeroy is Distinguished Professor Emerita of Classics and History at the City University of New York.

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