Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The concept of urbanity, of the characteristically citified view of life, referred originally to the view of the world from Rome, needless to say, and the popes who took "Urbanus" for a pontifical name were expressing their solidarity with the city they ruled as Bishop of Rome. The converse of "Urbanus" is "Rusticus". Urbane bears a relationship to "urban" similar to the relationship "humane" bears to "human" the OED notes.
In language, urbanity still connotes a smooth and literate style, free of barbarisms and other infelicities. In Antiquity, schools of rhetoric flourished only in the atmosphere of large cities, to which privileged students flocked from smaller cities, in order to gain polish.
Modern concepts of "urbanism"
- Lewis Mumford, The City in History : Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects
- Urbanity: a historical perspective]
- Sixth International Conference on Urban History: Power, Knowledge and Society in the City, Edinburgh September 5 - 7, 2002
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