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damnatio memoriae


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  • The punishment (qv herostrat) of erasing all historical mention of a person. Acc. to whichever thoroughness you aspire to, this may involve Stalinesque photographic emendations, Thutmosean statuary defacements, or the Orwellian erasure. The Roman Senate also practiced damnatio memoriae when unpopular Augusti were deposed or killed.

    It should be said, we can't know if a truly and thorougly effective damnatio memoriae has ever occurred, ipso facto.

    December 19, 2007