EMILIO GABBA E L’ANTICHITÀ NEL SETTECENTO

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Giuseppe Cambiano *
(*) Autore principale:
Giuseppe Cambiano | giuseppe.cambiano@sns.it

Abstract

According to Gabba, the ancient literary texts were essential evidence for the modern historian of antiquity, because they provided a view on how the ancients themselves interpreted their historical reality. But, following the steps of Benedetto Croce and Arnaldo Momigliano, he judged equally essential the history of modern historiography and, more generally, of modern reflections on ancient societies. For this reason the Eighteenth-century appeared to Gabba as particularly relevant, because in this century the reflections on antiquity were strictly and vitally connected to political, social and economic problems of the present, particularly during the American Revolution. Gabba wrote therefore a series of essays on the discussions developed in this century about colonies, federalism and commerce between ancient and moderns and on outstanding intellectuals such as Adam Ferguson and John Adams. For this emphasis on political and economic problems Gabba distinguished himself from the perspective of Momigliano, more interested in questions of historical methods and antiquarianism, and connected much closer to the enquiries of Franco Venturi on European enlightenment.


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