Date of Award

Spring 1983

Degree Type

Thesis - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Parr, Roger P.

Second Advisor

Robb, James H.


The art of rhetoric has always held a prominent place in the history of western civilization, from ancient times to the present. Rhetoric was constantly discussed and seriously studied by the early Greeks and Romans. During the Middle Ages it belonged to the trivium and constituted a compulsory part of the educational curriculum. The Renaissance Humanists so glorified rhetoric that by 1600 A.D. it became the foundation of the Jesuit educational system in the form of study of the humanities and liberal arts. Today there is widespread revival and rehabilitation of the study of rhetoric. This thesis is a historical survey which traces the development of the study of rhetoric from ancient Greece and Rome through the Renaissance, concluding with implications for the future.