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Thursday, December 15, 2005

Five Extracts From Suetonius' 'Lives Of The Caesars' To Back Up That Last List

1. "Some of the things he did are hard to believe. He had little boys trained as minnows to chase him when he went swimming and to get between his legs and nibble him. He also had babies not weaned from their mother breast suck at his chest and groin."
2. "He had the manager of his gladiatorial shows and beast-baitings beaten with chains in his presence for several successive days, and would not kill him until he was disgusted at the stench of his putrefied brain."
3. "He devised a kind of game, in which, covered with the skin of some wild animal, he was let loose from a cage and attacked the private parts of men and women, who were bound to stakes."
4. "At the post houses and inns he was unusually affable to the mule drivers and travelers, asking each of them in the morning whether they had breakfasted and even showing by belching that he had done so."
5. "He cut off the hands of a money-lender who carried on his business dishonestly and nailed them to his counter."


Mark said...

I should point out Vitellius did worse stuff than belching - such as inviting people round for dinner so he could kill them for a laugh. I just thought the belching bit was quite funny.

Anonymous said...

i bought the book on your recommendation - it's my light reading for the festive period

Mark said...

it's ace. Start with Tiberius, he's the scariest