Download Agricola and Germany (Oxford World's Classics) by Tacitus, Anthony Birley PDF

By Tacitus, Anthony Birley

Cornelius Tacitus, Rome's maximum historian and the final nice author of classical Latin prose, produced his first books in advert ninety eight, after the assination of the Emperor Domitian ended fifteen years of enforced silence. a lot of Agricola, that is the biography of Tacitus' past due better half's father Julius Agricola, is dedicated to Britain and its humans, considering that Agricola's declare to repute was once that as governor for seven years he had accomplished the conquest of england, started 4 many years previous. Germany presents an account of Rome's most threatening enemies, the Germans, and is the single surviving instance of an ethnographic learn from the traditional international. every one e-book in its means has had mammoth impact on our conception of Rome and the northern barbarians. This version displays fresh examine in Roman-British and Roman-German historical past and comprises newly came upon proof on Tacitus' early occupation.

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Example text

There had been nothing in his own conversation on this subject, rather it was because he seemed the right man. Rumour is not always wrong. Sometimes it even determines the choice. As consul he betrothed his daughter, then a girl of outstanding promise, to myself, then a young man, and after his consulship gave her in marriage. His appointment to govern Britain followed immediately afterwards, coupled with the priestly office of pontifex. Britain and its Peoples 10. Britain’s position and its peoples have been described by many writers.

Tacitus’ friend the Younger Pliny repeats the charge two years later in his Panegyric on Trajan, who will hold a genuine triumph, not one with the ‘images of a sham victory’ (Pan. ch. 16). Domitian had taken the name ‘Germanicus’, conqueror of the Germans, and this ‘conquest’ had been repeatedly portrayed on the imperial coinage. He had later held a further triumph ‘over the Germans’ (ad 89). In his second work Tacitus reflects (Ger. 37) that Rome had been ‘conquering’ the Germans for two hundred and ten years.

When he began it, and how long he lived, remain uncertain. The odds are that he lived on into the reign of Hadrian. The question must be asked: how conscientious and accurate was Tacitus as an historian—and how impartial was his judgement? A startling recent discovery has gone a long way towards vindicating his reputation for diligent research and sober assessment of evidence. In books 2 and 3 of his Annals Tacitus narrates in detail the downfall of Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso after his conflict with Germanicus in the east, Germanicus’ death, Piso’s suicide, and the debate in the senate at Rome.

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