Propelled to power by the age of 17 by an ambitious mother, self-indulgent to the point of criminality, inadequate, paranoid and the perpetrator of heinous crimes including matricide and fratricide, and deposed and killed by 31, Nero is one of Rome’s most infamous Emperors.
But has history treated him fairly? Or is the popular view of Nero as a capricious and depraved individual a travesty of the truth and a gross injustice to Rome's fifth emperor?
This new biography will look at Nero’s life with fresh eyes. While showing the man 'warts and all', it also caste a critical eye on the 'libels' which were perpetrated on him, such as claiming he was a madman, many of which were most probably made up to suit the needs of the Flavians, who had overthrown his dynasty.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This is a basic history of Nero's reign from 54 to 68 ad, with no axe to grind. Many recent histories of Nero seem to try to come up with a new theory as to why Nero acted the way he did, or to try and prove that Nero wasn't really a bad guy. This book, however, just presents the facts, as presented by the three major Roman historians Suetonius, Tacitus and Cassius Dio. The author comes to the conclusion that Nero wasn't a sadist, he was someone who simply wanted to be loved, but was a captive of the palace, in that he couldn't understand that not everyone wouldn't want what he wanted. When he got what he wanted, he was generous, and when he was thwarted, he lashed out. The book has about 100 pages of notes, and about 176 pages of text.
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