By Anthony Blond
With the hot good fortune of "Rome" on BBC2, nobody will examine the non-public lives of the Roman Emperors back within the comparable gentle. Anthony Blond's scandalous disclose of the lifetime of the Caesars is a must-read for all attracted to what rather went on in historic Rome. Julius Caesar is generally awarded as an excellent common while in reality he was once an conceited charmer and a swank; Augustus was once so aware of his top that he placed lifts in his sandals. yet they have been not anything in comparison to Caligula, Claudius and Nero. This booklet is attention-grabbing examining, eye-opening in its revelations and without problems exciting.
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Additional resources for A Brief History of the Private Lives of the Roman Emperors
All rights reserved. This book is sold subject to the condition that it shall not, by way of trade or otherwise, be lent, re-sold, hired out or otherwise circulated in any form of binding or cover other than that in which it is published and without a similar condition including this condition being imposed on the subsequent purchaser. A copy of the British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data is available from the British Library ISBN: 978-1-84529-719-0 eISBN: 978-1-47210-362-8 Printed and bound in the EU 1 3 5 7 9 10 8 6 4 2 CONTENTS Acknowledgments Bibliography Apology Map Family Tree Glossary ROMAN SOCIETY Sex Slavery The Romans and their Jews Roman Law The Roman Army The Bloody Games JULIUS CAESAR AND THE JULIO-CLAUDIAN EMPERORS Julius Caesar Augustus Tiberius Caligula Claudius Nero ROME The Cityscape Domus, the Townhouse Religion Roman Food The Trivial Round and the Common Tasks Index of Proper Names ACKNOWLEDGMENTS To my wife, Laura, for her chapter on Roman food, to Auberon Waugh, editor of The Literary Review, who let me write notices of these Emperors’ biographies, and to James Fergusson, who suggested they be written up into a book; to Lord Bridges, who introduced me to the British School in Rome and to the kindness and hospitality of the Director and the Deputy Director of that admirable institution; also to the archive department of the British Film Institute.
SESTERCES abbreviated as HS, the commonest Roman currency, worth a quarter of a denarius. SUBURA the slummiest section of Rome, where nevertheless Caesar had his family domus; polyglot, including Jews and the first synagogue. TALENT about twenty-five kilos of metal not necessarily gold or silver. TOGA impressive but awkward garment worn by Roman citizens on formal occasions; like a large bath-sheet and held by the left hand. Colleen McCullough, now a scholarly writer of historical novels, has proved that a Roman so attired could not have worn underpants as he would have found it impossible to pee.
Indeed Julius Caesar, who was known as a young man to have been the toy-boy of an Oriental prince and later to have become a promiscuous ‘bald-pated adulterer’, sung about by his soldiers, went on to be deified. Antony, exhibited as a boy for sale in a woman’s toga, the garb of a prostitute, became a triumvir and would have been, had he not lost the Battle of Actium with Cleopatra, the ruler of the world. For a Roman to be a known homosexual did not affect his social or political progress provided he was circumspect, did not let his desires appear obsessive, did not behave outrageously in public – did not, in other words, ‘frighten the horses’.
A Brief History of the Private Lives of the Roman Emperors by Anthony Blond