May 16, 2021
The Twelve Caesars
Posted by Suetonius Michael Grant Robert Graves

As private secretary to the Emperor Hadrian, Suetonius gained access to the imperial archives and used them along with eye witness accounts to produce one of the most colorful biographical works in history The Twelve Caesars chronicles the public careers and private lives of the men who wielded absolute power over Rome, from the foundation of the empire under Julius CaeAs private secretary to the Emperor Hadrian, Suetonius gained access to the imperial archives and used them along with eye witness accounts to produce one of the most colorful biographical works in history The Twelve Caesars chronicles the public careers and private lives of the men who wielded absolute power over Rome, from the foundation of the empire under Julius Caesar and Augustus, to the decline into depravity and civil war under Nero, and the recovery that came with his successors A masterpiece of anecdote, wry observation and detailed physical description, The Twelve Caesars presents us with a gallery of vividly drawn and all too human individuals.Robert Graves s celebrated translation, sensitively revised by Michael Grant, captures all the wit and immediacy of Suetonius original.

  • Title: The Twelve Caesars
  • Author: Suetonius Michael Grant Robert Graves
  • ISBN: 9780140449211
  • Page: 484
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Twelve Caesars As private secretary to the Emperor Hadrian Suetonius gained access to the imperial archives and used them along with eye witness accounts to produce one of the most colorful biographical works in hi

    Jan-Maat

    This Roman bedtime reading gives the reader a mixed experience The length of the lives is uneven the first three lives in the Robert Graves he d go on to recycle much of the material here into his novels I Claudius and Claudius the God translation alone make up half the book, the division of each life into public civil and military exploits , and private parts adventures in bedroom and dining room works against presenting each life as an organic whole and Suetonius sense of cause and effect seem [...]


    Glenn Russell

    This Penguin Classic of The Twelve Caesars by Suetonius is the perfect place to start for anybody interested in ancient Greco Roman history and culture Not only is this a most engaging translation by Robert Graves, author of I Claudius, but there is a short Forward by classics scholar, Michael Grant Additionally, there are ten maps of the city of Rome and the Roman Empire along with a glossary of key terms From my own experience, once I started reading, I couldn t stop Matter of fact, I was insp [...]


    Cassandra Kay Silva

    No words Each and every member of that family and ahherm non family who acquired that infamous title ceasar is such a massive wrecking case of extreams that I can t even begin to fathom that these men are real Let alone contemplate what citizens must of thought of them in their day Really If Suetonius is to be belived how many of these men would in our day be catergorized as legally insane I literally about fell out of my chair this weekend when I read that Nero had the gates blocked during his [...]


    Knjigoholičarka

    Ovako da je Svetonije novinar, radio bi u Kuriru Jer, iskreni da budemo, dobar deo njegovih pisanija treba uzeti cum grano salis, budu i da se doti ni potrudio da nam prenese ne samo potvr ene injenice, ve i rekla kazala tra eve od kojih su neki isto preterivanje kao, na primer, opisi Tiberijevih orgija na ostrvu Kapri kojima niko nije prisustvovao ali, logi no, svi znaju ta se tamo doga alo, ili izuzetno o tar portret apsolutiste Domicijana koji, mada vrlo neprijatna osoba, i nije bio tako po R [...]


    Greg

    Reading this book makes me kind of thankful that the sociopaths who we choose to govern us are relatively harmless men with only strange dreams of imperialism and desires for fame, riches, and adulation Sure we have a Vice President who shot a friend in the face and who brazenly admits to authorizing acts that make him a war criminal, and yes there are Greek bastards who have made a living off of sanctioning genocide for their own twisted ends, and this is just naming two high points in the Hall [...]


    Brenna

    Julius Caesar the catamite of King of Bithnyia Augustus singeing off his leg hair with hot walnut shells Caligula s seductive maiden dance Oh my Simply delicious


    Lois

    This is in my Top 10 books I love it so much, i think i have read it 3 times no joke I took this book with me on my travels in Rome and I bored Matt with my constant readings whilst we were visiting all of the historic sites I have a huge facination with Roman History, so I do appreciate that most people will find this utterly boring, but i love it, love it, love it, love it.


    Evan Leach

    The Lives of the Caesars is one of the best surviving sources covering the early Roman Empire In these 12 biographies, Suetonius discusses the lives of Julius Caesar and his 11 successors, from the mid first century BC to the death of Domitian in 96 AD I found a city of brick and left it marble Augustus CaesarNow given that these biographies come from the second century, this could make for dry reading Fortunately, two things prevent this First, many of the emperors under discussion here were de [...]


    Trevor

    This was a fascinating book Translated by Graves, who wroteI, Claudius, it is, in many ways, a shorter version of those books Although, Claudius does not come out of this history nearly as well as he does from Graves novels You may never have seen Monty Python s The Piranha Brothers, if not you should really try looking it up on youtube If only because I m quite certain that Nero is Doug Piranha in a toga.There were bits of this where I laughed outright and other bits where I ve laughed after th [...]


    Darwin8u

    It is a great overview of Rome s emperors from the Julians to the Flavians The mixture of historical biography and, what must have been, a political gossip tatler.


    umberto

    While reading this biography of The Twelve Caesars , one word popped in my mind, that is, nobility since all emperors in question were of course noble, feared and thus honored according to their own deeds However, such nobility and deeds might intensify admiration or hatred due to each emperor himself You can compare or assess each reign from your views acquired from reading unbelievably episodes of kindness or ruthlessness since they wielded absolute power within their families, colleages, subj [...]


    Bryn Hammond

    The mad, the bad and the dangerous to know I don t care if he s a gossip It s hilarious, and I gluttoned on the worst bits in my teens.


    João Fernandes

    Example Oh look this guy Nero seems alright why do people say he burned down Rome he is like Augustus 2.0 few pages later How pathetic, this idiot is just competing in and winning all music competitions, he s just a misunderstood attention seeking teenager, the poor thing few pages later God no NO NERO WHY PLEASE STOP Yes, the organisation of the stories is confusing, as shown above You can t just split people s lives and personalities up into sections and present them thematically.Yet it works [...]


    Jo

    Suetonius is like a gossipy old woman Loved it


    Rob Atkinson

    One of those classics that is a genuine, even salacious pleasure to read, and the historical basis for Robert Graves s I, Claudius , The Twelve Caesars covers the first twelve emperors of Ancient Rome Including Julius Caesar, though Augustus was the first officially the Julio Claudians through Nero, his very brief successors Galba,Otho and Vitellius in the tumultuous year of three Emperors , A.D 69 , and finally the Flavians Vespasian, Titus, and Domitian Secretary to Hadrian, Suetonius had dire [...]


    F.R.

    Did you know that the Emperor Augustus had a collection of dinosaur bones Or that one of the many perversities Caligula exhibited was a liking for bathing in hot oils Or that Nero once had a man killed simply because he looked like a cross schoolmaster These titbits and many others are detailed in this highly entertaining and amusing volume I d thought that a history and a fairly contemporary one at that of such great men would have detailed the various great exploits of their lives, but clearly [...]


    Blake Shirk

    Suetonius does an excellent job in painting an objective picture of the lives of the twelve Caesars from Julius Caesar to Domitian I was admittedly anticipating a biased account considering that Suetonius was the chief secretary to Hadrian during his reign Clearly I was mistaken Suetonius not only points out flaws and misdeeds from the Caesars, but even sometimes goes as far as to negatively portray their appearances many of whom were deified at this point This quest for a true account of the Ca [...]


    Ruthiella

    I didn t actually read the pictured Penguin classic edition translated by I, Claudius author Robert Graves, but rather a Harvard press edition which was translated by John C Rolfe and first published in 1913 that I got from the library The introduction explained that what Suetonius wrote was neither biography nor history in the modern sense of those terms, but rather were meant to give the thoughtful reader abundant opportunity for the reflexions and deductions which the writer has omitted So in [...]


    Sarah Sammis

    Back in 2005 I learned of The Twelve Caesars on Radio 4 It was part of A Good Read or some similar program Anyway, I was intrigued by the sound of this book that has so influenced writers ever since it was published nearly two thousand years ago I was not disappointed by the book and managed to read it in a course of an afternoon Suetonius s history of the early Roman empire covers Julius Caesar and the eleven emperors who followed Augustus, Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius, Nero, Galba, Otho, Vitel [...]


    Alessandra

    My dear Tiberius, you must not give way to youthful emotion, or take it to heart if anyone speaks ill of me let us be satisfied if we can make people stop short at unkind words, Chapter 2, pg 76 The fox changes his skin but not his habits Like a great documentary thriller Suetonius s novel is exceptional in that his documentation of the fantastical is rooted in a foundation of reality As the notable historian of the Roman Empire, Suetonius perfected the historical novel The lives of the Tweleve [...]


    B.R. Stateham

    Frankly, I m an ex History teacher, so I eat these kinds of books up for dessert By modern standards of form an style this book is very stodgy in construction But the images Suetonius paints of these twelve emporors is fascinating


    Jon(athan) Nakapalau

    Stranger than any fictione chapter on Caligula is truly disturbing.


    Isidora

    Toliko volim istoriju da mi je bila prekratka Nedostaje mi jos informacija.


    Rick Davis

    It s an ancient tabloid What s not to love


    Lyn Elliott

    This edition is based on Robert Graves translation, revised with an Introduction and Notes by JB Rives Rives explains that he has removed the interpolations Graves inserted to provide context to remarks that non specialist readers would not be able to follow otherwise, and has used a glossary and footnotes to provide extra information to help out Despite this I still found I floundered a bit, because I just don t know enough about ancient Roman government and social hierarchies, which were clear [...]


    Luís Paz da silva

    Este , a todos os t tulos, um livro fascinante especialmente para quem aprecie a hist ria da Rep blica romana, como o meu caso.Para al m do estilo fluido e caracter stico de quem e para quem a hist ria conta se, n o se adorna, h uma preocupa o que atravessa todos os textos de ser rigoroso e imparcial n o raramente, Suet nio tem o cuidado de referir vers es cuja veracidade ele pr prio exclui mas que nem por isso deixam de merecer refer ncia, para evitar acusa es de parcialidade na enumera o dos f [...]


    Elin

    Power corrupts absolute power corrupts absolutely Not sure anyone could read it without thinking of that expression A very entertaining and educational read The ridiculous omens that definitely happened give a hint that some of the depictions of the emperors are likely to be extremely questionable as well I couldn t help but think of David Cameron and the pig incident when reading about some of the exploits these guys supposedly got up to It s astonishing the lack of concern for life that seemed [...]


    Marty

    Suetonius gives a warts and all portrait of Julius Caesar and the first Roman emperors And what warts This is apparently the only source for these guys as people Everything we commonly know about them is here, down to ribald popular jokes A portrait of the beating heart of fascism No wonder our founders abhorred a standing army Not exactly a felicitous read I used Robert Graves s translation the remnants of my high school Latin wouldn t have got me through one sentence , but fascinating.


    Penelope

    One word AMAZING This book is a fantastic work I don t really have bad things to say about this book because I think it s a big source of information about the biographies of the first twelve Caesars If you like Ancient Rome history I recommend it


    umberto

    While reading this biography of The Twelve Caesars , one word popped in my mind, that is, nobility since all emperors in question were of course noble, feared and thus honored according to their own deeds However, such nobility and deeds might intensify admiration or hatred due to each emperor himself You can compare or assess each reign from your views acquired from reading unbelievably episodes of kindness or ruthlessness since they wielded absolute power within their families, colleages, subj [...]



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