There can be little doubt that all unnatural and artificial modes of life tend to deterioration of the powers of resistance of the organism to disease.
A consequence of this change of circumstances was that comedy was no longer national in character and sentiment, but had become imitative and artistic. The life which Terence represents is that of the well-to-do citizen class whose interests are commonplace, but whose modes of thought and speech are refined, humane and intelligent.
The whole aim of Terence was to present a faithful copy of the life, manners, modes of thought and expression which had been drawn from reality a century before his time by the writers of the New Comedy of Athens.
He lived at the meeting-point of three distinct civilizations - the mature, or rather decaying, civilization of Greece, of which Athens was still the centre; that of Carthage, which was so soon to pass away and leave scarcely any vestige of itself; and the nascent civilization of Italy, in which all other modes were soon to be absorbed.
Eight of them, it is true, fell into disuse; but the medieval Ionian and Hypo-ionian modes are absolutely identical with the modern natural scale of C; and the Aeolian and Hypoaeolian modes differ from our minor scale, not in constitution, but in treatment only.