Famous Ancient Roman Poets

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 1 
Virgil
(Ancient Roman Poet of the Augustan Period)
Virgil
10
Birthdate: October 15, 0070
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Cisalpine Gaul
Died: September 21, 0019
1st-century B.C. Roman poet Virgil is best remembered for his epic The Aeneid, which was based on Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey. He has also written the Latin poems the Eclogues/Bucolics and the Georgics. His Aeneid, considered ancient Rome’s national epic, inspired other influential works, such as Dante’s Divine Comedy.
 2 
Horace
(Leading Roman Lyric Poet During the Time of Augustus)
Horace
7
Birthdate: December 8, 0065
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Venosa, Italy
Died: November 27, 0008

Horace was a Roman lyric poet who was influential during the time of Augustus. Renowned for his Odes, Horace's ode-writing style was imitated by a number of aspiring poets in England during the 17th and 18th centuries when ode-writing was considered highly fashionable.

 3 
Lucretius
(Roman Poet and Philosopher)
Lucretius
6
Birthdate: 0099 BC
Birthplace: Ancient Rome
Died: 0055 BC

Lucretius was a Roman philosopher and poet. He is credited with originating the three-age system, which was formalized by C. J. Thomsen in 1836. His only known work De rerum natura, a philosophical poem, influenced several Augustan poets, including Virgil. The poem also played a prominent role in the development of atomism.

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 4 
Petronius
(Roman Novelist and Poet)
Petronius
4
Birthdate: 0027 AD
Birthplace: Marseille, France
Died: 0066 AD

Gaius Petronius Arbiter, better known as Petronius, was a Roman author who lived during Nero’s reign. He was known for his satirical novel Satyricon, which reflected the Roman society of his time. Petronius’s noble birth aroused the jealousy of many. He apparently committed suicide after being accused of treason.

 5 
Lucan
(One of the Outstanding Poets of the Imperial Latin Period Who is Known for His Epic Poem 'Pharsalia')
Lucan
3
Birthdate: November 3, 0039
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Córdoba, Spain
Died: April 30, 0065
Lucan was a Roman poet who is counted among the most important personalities of the Imperial Latin period. He is best remembered for his epic poem Pharsalia, which narrates the civil war between the forces of the Roman Senate and Julius Caesar. Lucan was renowned for the speed of his composition, which set him apart from his contemporaries.
 6 
Gaius Maecenas
(Political Advisor to Octavian, the First Roman Emperor)
Gaius Maecenas
3
Birthdate: April 15, 0068
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Arezzo
Died: 0008 BC
Gaius Maecenas was a political advisor to Octavian, the first Roman emperor. A patron for several important Augustan poets, including Virgil and Horace, Gaius Maecenas also served as a quasi-culture minister during the reign of his friend Octavian, who came to be known as Augustus after becoming the Roman emperor.
 7 
Statius
(Greco-Roman Poet of the 1st Century CE)
Statius
3
Birthdate: 0045 AD
Birthplace: Naples
Died: 0096 AD
Statius was a Greco-Roman poet whose extant Latin poetry includes an epic titled The Thebaid, which consists of 12 books and recounts the clash of two siblings, Polynices and Eteocles, over the throne of Thebes. Among his other surviving works are a collection of occasional poetry titled The Silvae and The Achilleid, an unfinished epic.
 8 
Sidonius Apollinaris
(The Single Most Important Surviving Author from Fifth-Century Gaul)
Sidonius Apollinaris
3
Birthdate: 0430 AD
Birthplace: Lugdunum
Died: July 31, 0489
Sidonius Apollinaris was a poet, bishop, and diplomat. He is regarded as the most prominent author from fifth-century Gaul whose works are extant. He is one of the four Gallo-Roman aristocrats from the fifth and sixth centuries whose letters survive in quantity. Sidonius Apollinaris is revered as a saint by the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church.
 9 
Persius
(Roman Poet and Satirist of Etruscan Origin)
Persius
3
Birthdate: December 4, 0034
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Volterra, Italy
Died: November 24, 0062
Persius was a Roman poet and satirist whose works display a Stoic wisdom. Persius' works, which were published posthumously by his friend and mentor Lucius Annaeus Cornutus, became extremely popular in the Middle Ages. His satires, which were composed in hexameters, went on to become popular even among modern-day satirists.
 10 
Ausonius
(Roman Poet and Teacher of Rhetoric)
Ausonius
3
Birthdate: 0310 AD
Birthplace: Bordeaux, France
Died: 0395 AD
Ausonius was a Roman poet best remembered for his works, Mosella and Ephemeris. Also a teacher of rhetoric, Ausonius worked as a tutor for a brief period to the future emperor Gratian. Gratian liked and respected Ausonius; after becoming the emperor in 375, he started bestowing on Ausonius the highest civil honors.
 11 
Prudentius
(Roman Poet and One of the Most Famous Medieval Authors)
Prudentius
3
Birthdate: 0348 AD
Birthplace: Hispania Tarraconensis
Died: 0413 AD
Prudentius was a Roman poet and one of the most famous medieval authors. His most influential work is titled Psychomachia, an allegory which incorporates elements of inner psychological conflicts and Hellenic epic. Psychomachia became the wellspring and inspiration of medieval allegorical literature. 
 12 
Claudian
(Latin Poet and Panegyrist of the Roman Army Military Commander Flavius Stilicho)
Claudian
4
Birthdate: 0370 AD
Birthplace: Alexandria, Egypt
Died: 0404 AD

Latin poet Claudian was noted as a panegyrist of Flavius Stilicho, the powerful military commander of Roman Emperor Honorius. Claudian’s oeuvre includes mainly poems for Honorius and Stilicho, and mythological-epic. His panegyrics addressed to Stilicho forms major source for events of Stilicho’s reign before 404. The unfinished epic, De raptu Proserpinae is considered the most significant non-political work of Claudian.

 13 
Marcus Manilius
(Roman Poet and Astrologer Who Wrote 'Astronomica', a Latin Didactic Poem)
Marcus Manilius
3
Birthdate: 0001 AD
Marcus Manilius was a Roman astrologer and poet. He is credited with writing Astronomica, a Latin didactic poem written in hexameters. Astronomica, which is about celestial phenomena, has been divided into five books. Marcus Manilius's Astronomica has fascinated many scholars and intellects, including Alfred Edward Housman.  
 14 
Silius Italicus
(Roman Senator, Orator and Epic Poet of the Silver Age of Latin Literature)
Silius Italicus
2
Birthdate: 0025 AD
Died: 0101 AD
Silius Italicus was a Roman orator, poet, and senator. An epic poet of the Silver Age of Classical Latin literature, Silius Italicus is best remembered for his only extant work Punica. The Punica, which narrates the Second Punic War, is the longest extant Latin poem with more than 12,000 lines.
 15 
Helvius Cinna
(Influential Neoteric Poet of the Late Roman Republic)
Helvius Cinna
3
Birthdate: 0085 BC
Birthplace: Roman Republic
Died: March 20, 0044
Helvius Cinna was a neoteric poet who was active during the late Roman Republic period. His most famous literary work is his magnum opus Zmyrna, which is a mythological epic poem that narrates the incestuous love of Smyrna for her father Cinyras. Cinna has also been depicted in stories involving Julius Caesar as he was lynched at the latter's funeral.
 16 
Agathias
(Greek Poet and Historian Who was the Principal Historian During Roman Emperor Justinian I's Reign)
Agathias
2
Birthdate: 0536 AD
Birthplace: Myrina
Died: 0582 AD
Agathias was a Greek poet and historian. He was the principal historian during Roman Emperor Justinian I's reign. Agathias is best remembered for his work Histories, which discusses the reign of Justinian. Agathias' Histories, which consists of five books, also provides information about pre-Islamic Iran. 
 17 
Publius Annius Florus
(Roman Poet and Rhetorician Who Influenced Latin Literature During the Second Century)
Publius Annius Florus
2
Birthplace: Africa
Died: 0130 AD
Publius Annius Florus was a Roman poet and rhetorician. He is generally counted among a group of writers who influenced Latin literature during the second century. Publius Annius Florus is also credited with founding a school in Tarraco.
 18 
Rutilius Claudius Namatianus
(Roman Poet Best Remembered for His Poem 'De reditu suo')
Rutilius Claudius Namatianus
1
Birthdate: 0416 AD
Birthplace: Gaul
Rutilius Claudius Namatianus was a Roman poet best remembered for his poem, De reditu suo. Written in Latin, the poem describes a coastal voyage between Rome and Gaul in 416. Rutilius Claudius Namatianus' poem is credited with inspiring an Italian film titled The Voyage Home, which premiered in 2004.  
 19 
Constantine Manasses
(Byzantine Chronicler of 12th Century During the Rule of Manuel I Komnenos)
Constantine Manasses
1
Birthdate: 1130 AD
Birthplace: Constantinople
Died: 1187 AD
Constantine Manasses was a Byzantine chronicler who was active in the 12th century during the rule of Manuel I Komnenos. He is best remembered for his work which chronicles important events from the formation of the world until the end of the rule of Nikephoros Botaneiates. The work achieved immense popularity and was translated into Bulgarian during 14th century. 
 20 
Gaius Valerius Flaccus
(Roman Poet Who was Active During the Silver Age of Classical Latin Literature)
Gaius Valerius Flaccus
3
Birthdate: 0045 AD
Birthplace: Italy
Died: 0090 AD
Gaius Valerius Flaccus was a Roman poet who was active during the Silver Age of Classical Latin literature. He is best remembered for his only surviving work titled Argonautica, which is a free imitation of Apollonius of Rhodes' more famous epic of the same name.
 21 
Statius Caecilius
(Roman Comic Poet)
Statius Caecilius
2
Birthdate: 0220 BC
Died: 0166 BC
Statius Caecilius was a Roman comic poet who is regarded as one of the most important and popular comic poets of his generation, although his works achieved popularity only after his death. Among his extant works is Plocium, which is the best preserved work of Statius Caecilius.
 22 
Theodore Prodromus
(Byzantine Author Who Was Known for His Dark Satirical Works)
Theodore Prodromus
2
Birthdate: 1115 AD
Birthplace: Constantinople
Died: 1166 AD

Byzantine author Theodore Prodromus is remembered for his prose and poetry. Also known as Poor Prodromus, he was initially a monk who went around for alms. He was well known during the reigns of John II Komnenos and Manuel I Komnenos. He was also known for his darks satirical tone in his works.

 23 
Licinius Macer Calvus
(Ancient Roman Poet and Orator Who Wrote in a Style Similar to His Friend Catullus)
Licinius Macer Calvus
1
Birthdate: May 28, 0082
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Arpino, Italy
Died: 0047 AD

Ancient Roman poet Licinius Macer Calvus was also a leading orator who followed the Attic school. Often mentioned along with his poet friend Catullus, he also shared his poetic style with him. Unfortunately, only 20 fragments of his poems survive, including The Fragmentary Latin Poets.

 24 
Publius Valerius Cato
(A Neoteric Movement Leader and an Avant-Garde Latin Poet of 1st Century BCE)
Publius Valerius Cato
1
Birthdate: 0100 AD
Birthplace: Cisalpine Gaul

Grammarian and poet Publius Valerius Cato of the Roman Republic was a leader of the Neoteric movement and one of the avant-garde Latin poets of the 1st century BCE who rejected conventional social and literary norms and turned away from classical Homeric epic poetry. Two notable works of Cato, who wrote several grammatical treatises and poems, include Lydia and Diana.

 25 
Albinovanus Pedo
(Roman Poet of the Augustan Era Whose Works Included Several Epigrams and an Epic)
Albinovanus Pedo
2
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

Augustan era Roman poet Albinovanus Pedo wrote many iconic works, such as an epic dedicated to Roman ruler Germanicus Caesar and several epigrams. However, the remains of his works have been reduced to a fragment preserved in the Suasoriae of Seneca the Elder. Some sources claim he was also a cavalry commander.