Gaius Augustus Germanicus

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Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus Germanicus, more commonly known by his childhood nickname “Caligula”, is widely considered as one of the most vilest men to ever live. He is one of the most corrupt and irrational emperors to ever rule, and is representative of what we fear in totalitarian leaders. He literally “went mad with power” and is, to a certain extent, the epitome of evil. In Lives of the Twelve Caesar's Suetonius delves into the life of Caligula, describing both his brief reign as emperor (37-41 AD) and his personal life. It can be gathered from Suetonius' work that Caligula was self-absorbed, indulgent, cruel etc. There are little, if any, positive aspects associated with either his reign as emperor or his personal life. Some of the most …show more content…
Suetonius' then goes onto include that a young man from a consular family allegedly sodomized Caligula. (Homosexuality was not necessarily frowned upon in Roman society, but playing the less dominant role in such an encounter certainly was). He then mentions the alleged incest that took place between Caligula and his sisters. It is important to note however, that Suetonius' is the only historian to record such details, as incest is not mentioned in either the reports of Seneca or Philo. Tacitus fails to implicate Caligula as well. This does not seem like a mere coincidence. A few sentences later, Suetonius' describes the process in which Caligula would defile married women. Although it is entirely plausible (and rather likely) that he did so, Suetonius' seems to embellish a bit on the process in [36.2]: “He even used his hand to lift the face of any who looked down in shame”. How can Suetonius' be sure of such a minute detail? Suetonius' was not alive for the reign of Caligula, how can he honestly include these features? Suetonius' is extremely harsh in describing Caligula throughout this rubric comparing his selection of women to the “deliberation of a slave trader”. Suetonius then describes the actions that the emperor took after violating married women. He claims that Caligula rated their performance

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