Fronto Avus : the tale of a grandfather
CITATION: Claassen, J-M., 2007. Fronto Avus : the tale of a grandfather. Akroterion, 52:49-59, doi:10.7445/52-0-52.
The original publication is available at http://akroterion.journals.ac.za
This paper examines some examples from the correspondence of the secondcentury rhetor, the Romanised African M. Cornelius Fronto, in particular letters that relate to the death of his grandson, drawing conclusions about Fronto as grandfather and as a person who had sustained previous bereavements. His attitude to his daughter Cratia2 and son-in-law Aufidius Victorinus receives special attention. The question of why Fronto seems to favour Victorinus over his own daughter when both are plunged into grief is addressed. It seems that in the grief of the younger man the older relives the agonies of his own youth, when he and his wife lost a series of children before bringing up Cratia as an only child.