(Robert Graves), [The Annals of Imperial Rome] (Tacitus) & [The Twelve Caesars] (Suetonius). Critiques Graves' portrait of Roman emperor in light of two historical works.
Life in Rome among the upper class during the Republican Era was steeped in intrigue, violence,and unscrupulous morals as well as a lust for greed and... more
Life in Rome among the upper class during the Republican Era was steeped in intrigue, violence,and unscrupulous morals as well as a lust for greed and power. Many would argue that this is human nature and that nothing has changed in 2,000 years. Be that as it may, the reign of Claudius Drusus Nero Germanicus, known as Claudius, who lived from 10 B.C. to A.D. 54, was no different, in fact, by many standards was very ordinary in a frightening sort of way. Robert Graves, in I, Claudius, which was first published in 1934, attempts to provide a fascinating look at the period through the eyes of Claudius. The purpose of this paper is to critique Graves' non-fictionalized "autobiography" of Claudius particularly as to how it meshes with history in light of the writings by Tacitus in The Annals of Imperial Rome (translated and published in 1988) and Suetonius'