The Romans And Medieval Europe
The Romans, conscious of Greek art and thought, intentionally copied the Greeks. The first neoclassical age was really the Roman one between about the first century C.E. and the fifth century C.E. A good deal of what we now call classicism is a Roman continuation and expansion of Greek thought and aesthetic ideas and values. Fortunately, most of the Roman works are extant, and the writings of the poets Horace, Ovid, and Virgil, as well as the orators and prose writers including Cicero, Cato, Pliny the Elder, and Quintilian, have greatly enriched the classical tradition. Latin had a vigorous life all through the medieval period. It was the lingua franca not only of the church but of the universities, which started in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, as well as most serious writing.