16th century edition of Virgil with Servius' commentary printed to the left of the text
16th century edition of Virgil with Servius’ commentary printed either side of the main text

Nullus locus sine genio or ‘there is no place without its spirit’ Maurus Servius Honoratus wrote in his commentary of Virgil’s Aeneid in the 5th Century AD. It would have been understood in those days as pertaining to the widespread latin belief in the spirit of place: the genius loci. However, what is often not recalled in the contemporary analysis of the genius loci is that the genius was present both in places and in people. It was this genius or spirit that ultimately defined the character of a person or of a place. It is through the writings of people that we can meet their genius. This is the aim of this blog: the rediscovery of human genius.

Further Reading:

Latin Literature: An Anthology (Penguin Classics)

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