The Twelve Caesars

The Twelve Caesars

Summary

'Suetonius, in holding up a mirror to those Caesars of diverting legend, reflects not only them but ourselves: half-tempted creatures, whose great moral task is to hold in balance the angel and the monster within' GORE VIDAL

As private secretary to the Emperor Hadrian, the scholar Suetonius had access to the imperial archives and used them (along with eyewitness accounts) to produce one of the most colourful 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 under Nero and the recovery that came with his successors. This masterpiece of observation, immortalized in Robert Graves's classic translation, presents us with a gallery of vividly drawn - and all too human - individuals.

Translated by ROBERT GRAVES
Revised with an Introduction and notes by JAMES B. RIVES

About the authors

Suetonius

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Robert Graves

Robert Graves was born in 1895 in Wimbledon. He went from school to the First World War, where he became a captain in the Royal Welch Fusiliers and was seriously wounded at the Battle of the Somme. He wrote his autobiography, Goodbye to All That, in 1929, and it was soon established as a modern classic. He died on 7 December 1985 in Majorca, his home since 1929.
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