Alaric

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Alaric

?370--410 ad, king of the Visigoths, who served under the Roman emperor Theodosius I but later invaded Greece and Italy, capturing Rome in 410

Alaric

(c. 370–410) Visigothx chief; sacked Rome. [Eur. Hist.: Bishop, 14]
References in periodicals archive ?
The terms in which nineteenth-century pedagogy tended to understand memorization mirror those that "Das Grab im Busento" deploys with respect to its "main character" Alarich and his memory.
zu wiederholen, wer Alarich war, und wie er mit seinem Gotenheere nach Cosenza in Suditalien gekommen" (78).
While "Das Grab im Busento" turns the ballad's attempt at a restitution of oral tradition into its central plot point, that plot suggests something else as well: the river carries the song of Alarich, but it also hides the physical Alarich beneath its waves.
What Bumm and others discount is that the poem's strange double career has its origin in the text itself and is in many ways solicited by it: the way in which "Das Grab im Busento" dissolves its one recognizable object into an ever more ethereal ensemble can be read (a la Bumm) as a chillingly lonely and lifeless lament for that lost body, or one can read it as the joyous sacrifice of the individual body to the greater group, as the dead Alarich is dispersed into the "Gothenheer" and its patriotic songs.
The infamous outing by Heinrich Heine, the so-called "Platen-Affare" that precipitated the poet's semi-voluntary exile from Germany and ultimately delivered him to the same fate as befell Alarich, was still a few years in the future at the time Platen wrote "Das Grab im Busento." Nevertheless, fear of this kind of publicity clearly subtends the poem and its desire to protect a beautiful tragic corpse from the viciousness of a nattering populace.
Alarich's men honor his memory not by erecting a memorial, but rather seek to insure that no reminder exists, save the one they know to be hidden beneath the waves.
After all, the Goths pursue this forgetting of forgetting in order to ward off diggers: "Keines Romers schnode Habsucht soll dir je das Grab versehren." The Romans threaten to violate Alarich's grave, trying to lay hold of that body and his "stolze Habe"; their "Habsucht" is hermeneutic insofar as it seeks to concretize (into a particular body and its physical accoutrements) a king the poem is seeking to render ethereal.