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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: April ::
Re: Young Marcellus
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.0963  Friday, 27 April 2001

From:           David Wilson-Okamura <
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Date:           Thursday, 26 Apr 2001 11:37:08 -0500
Subject: 12.0951 Re: Young Marcellus
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.0951 Re: Young Marcellus

At 10:55 AM 4/26/01 -0400, Don Bloom wrote:

>I won't pick out the individual responsible, but one of the respondents
>to the "Young Marcellus" query referred to Octavius as Octavian. This
>usage has bothered me ever since my third year Latin teacher (who knew
>more Latin than I ever will) did so many years ago. In the way that
>Latin words are usually Englished, Octavian would be short for
>Octavianus in the way that Julian is short for Julianus (not Julius).

N.S. Gill, the Ancient History guide at About.com, explains this
practice concisely as follows: "Augustus, originally Octavius, assumed
the name Octavian upon his adoption by Julius Caesar, and then the title
of Augustus after he disposed of the other major political powers and
assumed control of Rome."

Octavian is, as you note, English for Octavianus.

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