Favourite Screen Costumes || Artemisia’s gold dress (300: Rise of an Empire 2014)
Costumes by: Alexandra Byrne
The ruins of the Temple of Edfu
All Hail Tiberius, Least Media-Savvy of the Roman Emperors
Tiberius was proclaimed Roman emperor on September 17 in AD 14, exactly 2,000 years ago.
He was also a bit idiosyncratic. “He was the least media-savvy emperor you could imagine,” says curator David Saunders, who has been in charge of this bronze portrait of Tiberius which leaves us on September 22. He point to this description found in the writings of Cassius Dio:Tiberius was a patrician of good education, but he had a most peculiar nature. He never let what he desired appear in his conversation, and what he said he wanted he usually did not desire at all. On the contrary, his words indicated the exact opposite of his real purpose; he denied all interest in what he longed for, and urged the claims of what he hated. He would exhibit anger over matters that were far from arousing his wrath, and make a show of affability where he was most vexed…In short, he thought it bad policy for the sovereign to reveal his thoughts; this was often the cause, he said, of great failures, whereas by the opposite course, far more and greater successes were attained.
Moreover, David tells us, “Tiberius’s accession itself was a farrago: Tiberius sort-of feigning reluctance, the Senate bullying him, he being all, ‘Well, if-I-have-to,’ and in the end—according to Suetonius—saying he’ll do it as long as he can retire.”
Suetonius is full of great, albeit spurious, anecdotes about poor old Tiberius, David reports. “When someone addressed him as ‘My Lord,’ it is said, Tiberius gave warning that no such insult should ever again be thrown at him.”
Happy accession, My Lord!
Portrait Head of Tiberius (“The Lansdowne Tiberius”), early 1st century A.D., Roman. The J. Paul Getty Museum
Statue of Tiberius (detail), Roman, A.D. 37, Soprintendenza Speciale per i Beni Archeologici di Napoli e Pompei – Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli, Laboratorio di Conservazione e Restauro. Currently on view at the Getty Villa following conservation and study.
♛ 500 episode challenge ♛
↳ 116. spartacus: vengeance - 2.08 balance
Pompey the Great (from 78-60 B.C.)
Despite Sulla’s laws to check the ambitions of powerful generals, his successor, was just that. Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus, called Pompey the Great, had in fact been one of Sulla’s most trusted lieutenants. After Sulla’s death, Pompey enjoyed a brief war in Italy with the rebel consul Lepidus (the father of the future Triumvir). Following his success, Magnus, was tasked with Spain and the great Quintus Sertorius. In 70 B.C., having won favor for his military exploits, he asked for, and got, permission to stand for consul even though he was underage and had not entered the Cursus Honorum (other offices).
Once in office, Pompey took steps to consolidate his popularity. He rescinded the most objectionable of Sulla’s law, restoring the tribune of the plebs, for instance. But he did not seek re-election, and after 1 term (with Marcus Crassus) he stepped down. Two years later, however, in 67 B.C., he was granted a three-imperium to rid ‘Our Sea’ of pirates. He accomplished the job in three months. He then turned to the East, where he defeated old Mithridates once and for all.
While he was away from Rome, the city was again plunged into disorder, mostly through the machinations of an unscrupulous man named Catilina. The ambitious Catilina, thwarted 3 times in bids to become consul, plotted to take over the Government by force. His insurrection failed, and he was killed, but the extent of his support among the masses made it clear that they were deeply discontented with the existing state of affairs.
With the power of his army behind him, and a chaotic politcal condition at home, Pompey could have taken over the Government when he returned to Rome. Many expected him to do so. Instead, following tradition, Pompey disbanded his army outside the city and waited for an official invitation to enter and be recognized for his feats. The Senate did grant him a ‘triumph’, but refused to honor his deeds: it would not approve the agreements he made with Eastern Kings, and it refused to make any grants of land to his veterans.
Pompey thereupon formed a secret alliance with two other Romans, the former consul Marcus Crassus and Gaius Julius Caesar. This unofficial coalition, based more on expediency than friendship, came to be called the First Triumvirate.
Frescoes from Oplontis, 1st c. CE. Italy.
Gold and Lapis Lazuli earring
19th Dynasty, New Kingdom
(Source: The Metropolitan Museum)
'You speak as Jupiter, hurling bolts from the heavens!' [insp]
Spartacus Meme: 1/9 charactersIlithyia
"That is how you sate desire. For love, or vengeance—without hesitation."
Favourite Screen Costumes || Artemisia’s tasselled outfit (300: Rise of an Empire 2014)
Costumes by: Alexandra Byrne