I have been digging into Tacitus since the beginning of the year, but my work has only really just begun to accelerate and maintain a steady pace. I am uncertain if my interest in the ancient Germans is a function of the paucity of information in the literary record concerning them and their lives, or if it persists in spite of that sad state of affairs. I tend to incline to the latter supposition, since the importance of these peoples for the late history of the Roman Empire, and, of course, Europe as a whole, cannot be underestimated. Also, I think, it is the risk and tension between cultures — the German against the Roman — and the rough excitement of frontier culture, that makes the limes, the limit of Roman ‘civilization’, so interesting.
“Wherefore, they deemed [their womenfolk] to be, in truth, something sacred and prescient, neither spurning their counsels nor disregarding their opinions.”
inesse quin etiam sanctum aliquid et providum putant, nec aut consilia earum aspernantur aut responsa neglegunt.
Tacitus, On the Origin and Disposition of the Germans, VIII,2.