Absolute Power. The Real Lives of Europe's Most Infamous by C.S. DENTON


Here, seventy five succinct essays hide ecu royalty from the final king of Rome to Tsar Nicholas II. there's a permanent public curiosity in royalty and dictatorial rulers: this e-book covers them all comprehensively. way over simply sensational debts, the publication makes a real try and comprehend what drove them to their excesses. a casual, readable variety produces a robust turn-page influence. In our time, whilst ecu monarchies appear little greater than vacationer curiosities and democracy is taken without any consideration, you possibly can omit how a lot energy pre-democratic rulers may well as soon as wield. The rulers and holders of political energy during this booklet fall into 4 different types: these villainized by way of propaganda; people with severe psychological issues; these concurrently respected and reviled; and people who actually have been the epitome of evil. 'Absolute strength' indicates how they have been all over excited by way of their exalted prestige or perhaps beaten via it, whereas a number of have been pushed over the sting into insanity.

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That evening, Sextus rushed home to find his wife being a bit too friendly with some men at a party she was hosting without his permission. Lucretia, on the other hand, was as dutiful as ever, sitting at home patiently waiting for the return of her husband. Humiliated and now lacking a substantial amount of money, Sextus attempted to seduce Lucretia in order to discredit her and get back at Sextus. When she would not relent to his charisma, Sextus flew into a rage and raped her. Lucretia soon after gathered together her husband and father, in tears explained what had been done to her, then stabbed herself through the heart with a knife.

In the middle of a heated argument over political matters, she even went so far as to pull out old letters written to her by Augustus years before that talked about Tiberius as though he were a spoiled child. Although he resisted Livia's domineering at every possible turn, it became the punchline of countless jokes that Livia rightfully saw herself as the one directly responsible for Tiberius's place as emperor. ' When Livia, then well into her eighties, finally reached her deathbed in AD 29, Tiberius, who had already established his permanent residence at Capri (partially because, perhaps, of his festering hatred for Livia), declined to visit her.

Exactly what Caligula was exposed to, if anything, can never be known, but accounts hint that by this point Caligula was no stranger to depravity. Suetonius writes that at the ripe age of seventeen he had already made love to his favorite sister Drusilla, who received his more than brotherly attentions with open arms. In AD 35, at the age of twenty-three, Caligula was at Tiberius' insistence engaged to Junia, the daughter of a consul on good terms with Tiberius. Almost nothing is known about her or how the couple got along, because Junia died from a difficult childbirth less than a year later, with the child following her.

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