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Cassiodorus(Flavius Magnus Aurelius Cassiodorus Senator) (kăshōdō`rəs), c.485–c.585, Roman statesman and author. He held high office under Theodoric the Great and the succeeding Gothic rulers of Italy, who gave him the task of putting into official Latin their state papers and correspondence. These he later collected as Variae epistolae (tr. by Thomas Hodgkin, 1886). After retiring he founded two monasteries; in one of these the monks devoted leisure time to copying old manuscripts, which were thus preserved. Among Cassiodorus's works were his History of the Goths, preserved in the abridgment by JordanesJordanes
, fl. 6th cent., historian of the Ostrogoths, b. in the lower Danube region. His History of the Goths, an abridgment of the lost work of Cassiodorus, is the only extant source for Ostrogothic history and one of the few works written in Vulgar Latin.
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See J. J. O'Donnell, Cassiodorus (1979).
(Flavius Magnus Aurelius Cassiodorus Senator). Born circa 487 at Scyllacium, in Calabria; died circa 578 at Vivarium. Writer and statesman of the Ostrogothic state.
Cassiodorus was a retainer of Theodoric and his successors. He favored rapprochement between the Ostrogoths and the Romans. In his old age he became a monk and founded the monastery of Vivarium, which became one of the centers of early medieval culture, on his estate on the western shore of the Gulf of Taranto. He wrote the 12-book History of the Goths, which has survived in Jordanes’ abridged version. Cassiodorus also composed several works on the history of the church and the Variae —collections of letters, rescripts, and the like—which are an important source for the history of the Goths.
WORKSIn Monumenta Germaniae historica: Auctorum antiquissimorum, vols. 11–12. Berlin, 1894.
In Patrologiae latina, vol. 69. Paris, 1865.