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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



10588
Tacitus, Annals, 6.7.3
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1. Tacitus, Annals, 1.7, 1.73.4, 2.32.1, 3.19, 4.1.1, 5.8, 6.6, 11.15.1, 12.8.2, 13.24.2 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

1.7.  At Rome, however, consuls, senators, and knights were rushing into slavery. The more exalted the personage, the grosser his hypocrisy and his haste, — his lineaments adjusted so as to betray neither cheerfulness at the exit nor undue depression at the entry of a prince; his tears blent with joy, his regrets with adulation. The consuls, Sextus Pompeius and Sextus Appuleius, first took the oath of allegiance to Tiberius Caesar. It was taken in their presence by Seius Strabo and Caius Turranius, chiefs respectively of the praetorian cohorts and the corn department. The senators, the soldiers, and the populace followed. For in every action of Tiberius the first step had to be taken by the consuls, as though the old republic were in being, and himself undecided whether to reign or no. Even his edict, convening the Fathers to the senate-house was issued simply beneath the tribunician title which he had received under Augustus. It was a laconic document of very modest purport:— "He intended to provide for the last honours to his father, whose body he could not leave — it was the one function of the state which he made bold to exercise." Yet, on the passing of Augustus he had given the watchword to the praetorian cohorts as Imperator; he had the sentries, the men-at‑arms, and the other appurteces of a court; soldiers conducted him to the forum, soldiers to the curia; he dispatched letters to the armies as if the principate was already in his grasp; and nowhere manifested the least hesitation, except when speaking in the senate. The chief reason was his fear that Germanicus — backed by so many legions, the vast reserves of the provinces, and a wonderful popularity with the nation — might prefer the ownership to the reversion of a throne. He paid public opinion, too, the compliment of wishing to be regarded as the called and chosen of the state, rather than as the interloper who had wormed his way into power with the help of connubial intrigues and a senile act of adoption. It was realized later that his coyness had been assumed with the further object of gaining an insight into the feelings of the aristocracy: for all the while he was distorting words and looks into crimes and storing them in his memory. 2.32.1.  His estate was parcelled out among the accusers, and extraordinary praetor­ships were conferred on those of senatorial status. Cotta Messalinus then moved that the effigy of Libo should not accompany the funeral processions of his descendants; Gnaeus Lentulus, that no member of the Scribonian house should adopt the surname of Drusus. Days of public thanksgiving were fixed at the instance of Pomponius Flaccus. Lucius Piso, Asinius Gallus, Papius Mutilus, and Lucius Apronius procured a decree that votive offerings should be made to Jupiter, Mars, and Concord; and that the thirteenth of September, the anniversary of Libo's suicide, should rank as a festival. This union of sounding names and sycophancy I have recorded as showing how long that evil has been rooted in the State. â€” Other resolutions of the senate ordered the expulsion of the astrologers and magic-mongers from Italy. One of their number, Lucius Pituanius, was flung from the Rock; another — Publius Marcius — was executed by the consuls outside the Esquiline Gate according to ancient usage and at sound of trumpet. 3.19.  A few days later, the Caesar recommended the senate to confer priesthoods on Vitellius, Veranius, and Servaeus. To Fulcinius he promised his support, should he become a candidate for preferment, but warned him not to let impetuosity become the downfall of eloquence. This closed the punitive measures demanded by Germanicus' death: an affair which, not only to the generation which witnessed it, but in the succeeding years, was a battle-ground of opposing rumours. So true it is that the great event is an obscure event: one school admits all hearsay evidence, whatever its character, as indisputable; another perverts the truth into its contrary; and, in each case, posterity magnifies the error. Drusus, who had left the capital, in order to regularize his command, entered it shortly afterwards with an ovation. A few days later, his mother Vipsania died — the only one of all Agrippa's children whose end was peace. The rest perished, part, it is known, by the sword, part, it was believed, by poison or starvation. 4.1.1.  The consulate of Gaius Asinius and Gaius Antistius was to Tiberius the ninth year of public order and of domestic felicity (for he counted the death of Germanicus among his blessings), when suddenly fortune disturbed the peace and he became either a tyrant himself or the source of power to the tyrannous. The starting-point and the cause were to be found in Aelius Sejanus, prefect of the praetorian cohorts. of his influence I spoke above: now I shall unfold his origin, his character, and the crime by which he strove to seize on empire. Born at Vulsinii to the Roman knight Seius Strabo, he became in early youth a follower of Gaius Caesar, grandson of the deified Augustus; not without a rumour that he had disposed of his virtue at a price to Apicius, a rich man and a prodigal. Before long, by his multifarious arts, he bound Tiberius fast: so much so that a man inscrutable to others became to Sejanus alone unguarded and unreserved; and the less by subtlety (in fact, he was beaten in the end by the selfsame arts) than by the anger of Heaven against that Roman realm for whose equal damnation he flourished and fell. He was a man hardy by constitution, fearless by temperament; skilled to conceal himself and to incriminate his neighbour; cringing at once and insolent; orderly and modest to outward view, at heart possessed by a towering ambition, which impelled him at whiles to lavishness and luxury, but oftener to industry and vigilance — qualities not less noxious when assumed for the winning of a throne. 6.6.  The beginning of this letter from the Caesar was considered notable; for he opened with the following words:— If I know what to write to you, Conscript Fathers, or how to write it, or what not to write at all at this time, may gods and goddesses destroy me more wretchedly than I feel myself to be perishing every day! So surely had his crimes and his infamies turned to the torment even of himself; nor was it in vain that the first of sages was accustomed to affirm that, could the souls of tyrants be laid open, lacerations and wounds would meet the view; since, as the body is torn by the lash, so is the spirit of man by cruelty and lust and evil purposes. For not his station nor his solitudes could save Tiberius from himself confessing the rack within his breast and his own punishments. 11.15.1.  He next consulted the senate on the question of founding a college of diviners, so that "the oldest art of Italy should not become extinct through their indolence. often, in periods of public adversity, they had called in diviners, on whose advice religious ceremonies had been renewed and, for the future, observed with greater correctness; while the Etruscan nobles, voluntarily or at the instance of the Roman senate, had kept up the art and propagated it in certain families. Now that work was done more negligently through the public indifference to all liberal accomplishments, combined with the progress of alien superstitions. For the moment, indeed, all was flourishing; but they must show their gratitude to the favour of Heaven by making sure that the sacred rituals observed in the time of hazard were not forgotten in the day of prosperity." A senatorial decree was accordingly passed, instructing the pontiffs to consider what points in the discipline of the haruspices needed to be maintained or strengthened.
2. Tacitus, Histories, 1.18.1 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
anger, divine Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
augustus, divus Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
calpurnius piso, cn. (governor of syria), trial and death of Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
cotta messalinus Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
decline, of religion Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
deification Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
delatores Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
expiation Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
fortuna Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
forum Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
haruspices Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
haruspicy, decline Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
incest Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
libo drusus Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
lightning, as prodigy Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
maiestas Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
oaths Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
omens Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
pontifices, give remedies Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
priests, (mis-)appointments Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
punishment, divine Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
rubrius Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
saevitia' Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
tiberius, and divus augustus Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
tiberius, emperor, and informers Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
tiberius, emperor, undermines religion Davies, Rome's Religious History: Livy, Tacitus and Ammianus on their Gods (2004) 187
tiberius, letters of Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214
tiberius, psychological torment of Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 214