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Caligula (Lancaster Pamphlets in Ancient History) [Paperback]

Sam Wilkinson
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

December 25, 2004 0415341213 978-0415341219 New edition

Sam Wilkinson provides an accessible introduction to the reign of Caligula, one of the most controversial of all the Roman Emperors. Caligula's policies have often been interpreted to be those of a depraved tyrant.

This study provides a reassessment of this controversial reign by scrutinising the ancient literary sources that are so hostile to Caligula, and by examining the reasoning behind the policies he enforced. Key topics discussed include:

* Caligula's early life and accession to power
* Caligula's relationship with the Senate
* how far Caligula's domestic and foreign policies can be judged to be a success
* why Caligula was assassinated in AD 41, only four years after his accession to power.

With a guide to primary and secondary sources, a chronology and a detailed glossary, Caligula is an invaluable study of the reign of this fascinating Emperor.



Product Details

  • Series: Lancaster Pamphlets in Ancient History
  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; New edition edition (December 25, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415341213
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415341219
  • Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 6.3 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,271,280 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Book May 6, 2014
By GZP
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This little volume is well-written, clear, and concise. It is easy to read and holds your attention well. But, unlike the "I Claudius" type of biography, this one analyzes each important element of the Caligula "legend" to see if these elements --so often assumed to be true-- can really hold up in the face of objective logic. The traditional image of the madman dancing around the palace just doesn't seem to make real sense. Okay, so that's refreshing and welcome. However, the guy was killed after only 4 years of rule for some reason. The author makes him a martyr, a modernizing visionary whose very excellence and efficiency made the old-guard factionalists kill him! Well let's see.....he was a spoiled army brat whose father died under suspicious circumstances when the kid was only 4 years old....he was paraded through Rome by his vengeful mother and lived under the care of women whose other charges died off at alarmingly young ages....he was taken into "protective" custody by his morbidly reclusive and paranoid uncle after one of his brothers was executed on the evidence provided by his other brother...and then was given preference to the imperial dignity when he had no experience of military command or political administration.........WOULDN'T this succession of debilitating incidents perpetrated on Gaius at every turn of his mental and emotional development leave SOME mark on his character????????????? The author's arguments are likely correct, but not sufficient. The typical "lunatic on the loose" image simply cannot be believed, but the ardent visionary, victim of the Old Senate, is just as unbelievable.
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