De nieuwe stichters van de Eeuwige Stad | Amsterdam University Press Journals Online
Volume 51, Issue 4
  • ISSN: 0165-8204
  • E-ISSN: 2667-1573




*Dit artikel is gebaseerd op een promotieonderzoek gefinancierd door een subsidie van de Nederlandse Organisatie voor wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (NWO) aan OIKOS, de landelijke onderzoekschool voor klassieke studiën. Naast vele anderen dank ik met name Olivier Hekster, Sible de Blaauw en David Rijser voor hun waardevolle commentaar en talrijke interessante discussies, en Ineke Sluiter voor de mogelijkheid om in dit themanummer mijn onderzoek te bespreken.

can be a powerful strategy to legitimize innovation and changes, but its success also depends on the choice of the anchor. If a given anchor proves to be successful in one context, it may be purposefully employed again and again in highly different circumstances. The foundation of Rome is a case in point: major innovations were repeatedly related to the city’s most distant beginnings, and founders of Rome came to act as mirrors through which the Romans recognized the novelties of the present in a primordial past.

A concrete application of this idea is the phenomenon of ‘ktistic renewal’: redefining the concept of foundation, influential agents of innovation could be seen as ‘second founders’ of the city. This epithet was famously applied to the emperor Augustus, comparing him to Romulus. The way his innovative regime was anchored in turn functioned as an anchor for later innovations. In Late Antiquity, the apostles Peter and Paul were also seen as new founders of a reborn, Christian Rome. In both periods, foundational figures thus played a role as anchors to legitimate far-reaching religious and political changes. This article examines the repeated recourse to new and second founders in the Augustan Age and Late Antiquity to highlight the success of one anchoring device in two very distinct contexts. Obviously, such double or incremental anchoring may call for innovation in the use of the anchor itself – and that is exactly what this contribution aims to study.


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