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Maktspelet i Rom : historiae

av Tacitus

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1,203712,482 (3.9)17
In The Histories Cornelius Tacitus, widely regarded as the greatest of all Roman historians, describes with cynical power the murderous `year of the Four Emperors' - AD 69 - when in just a few months the whole of the Roman Empire was torn apart by civil war. W.H. Fyfe's classic translation has been substantially revised and supplied with extensive historical and literary notes. The Introduction examines the subtleties of Tactitus' writing and gives the necessary political and social background.… (mer)
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A Roman historical chronicle by Tacitus. Written c. 100–110, it covers c. 69–96, a period which includes the Year of Four Emperors following the downfall of Nero, as well as the period between the rise of the Flavian Dynasty under Vespasian and the death of Domitian. ( )
  Marcos_Augusto | Mar 5, 2021 |
A meaningless rating, that just means "I didn't really enjoy reading this, but I'm glad I did." There's just too much movement of arms and men in the story Tacitus tells to really grab me, too many generals moving and shaking. When he focuses away from generals and onto people, I'm all in. The one-liners, of course, are fabulous.

The introduction to the World's Classics edition is well worth reading, too, which is something you can't normally say for these introductions. This one makes an interesting argument about what's happening in Tacitus' writings, without banging on about current obsessions (except to make the reasonable point that Tacitus isn't anti-semitic, even though he's no fan of the Jews in Palestine at this time). The argument is, basically, that Tacitus is most interesting in his attention to the power of rumor. He does have his own interpretations of events, and he backs them up, but he also rarely describes an event (say, general Y concedes a battle) without pointing out how other people understood that event at the time. And those understandings are often the result of ignorant speculation, but sometimes people get it right. It's a nice reminder that our actions and reactions are entirely mediated by our interpretation of actions, and that those interpretations are often undertaken with very little evidence or knowledge. Plus ca change... ( )
  stillatim | Oct 23, 2020 |
The death of Nero begins a Roman bloodletting that Augustus had thought he had completely ended as four men will within a year claim the title Emperor. The Histories by Tacitus follows the aftermath of Nero’s death as a succession of men claimed the throne until the Flavians emerge to return the Pax Romana.

Tacitus begins his work with those who had prospered under Nero worrying for themselves while the rest of the populace celebrated and setting the stage for the eventual assassination for Galba and the rise of Otho, who the former had passed over as his chosen successor. Yet at the time of his death Galba was facing a mutiny on the German frontier that had installed Vitellius as their choice as emperor, a task that Otho took to quash and retain his own throne. The invasion of Italy by Vitellius’ legions brought war to the core of empire for the first time in almost a century and witnessed the defeat of Otho’s forces before he committed suicide. The rise of Vitellius brought Vespasian, the leader of the legions fighting the Jewish War, into the fray as he accepted the proclamation of his legions as emperor and soon found the supporters of Otho and others joining him. After the crushing defeat of his forces, Vitellius attempted to abdicate but the Guards wouldn’t let him resulting in his death by Vespasian’s soldiers. On top of civil war in Italy and the final phase of the Jewish War under Titus, a Gallo-German uprising at first claiming support for Vespasian became an invasion and rebellion that took numerous legions to suppress and the aftermath would be alluded to in Tacitus’ own Germany.

Although The Histories are incomplete, from the beginning Tacitus brings his aristocratic ideology and politics in focus early by showing only someone with political realism and firm hand on the legions can prevent civil wars and the rioting of the masses. The writing is quick-paced, going hand in hand with the rapid succession of events but Tacitus does give excellent portraits on the prime actors in this historical drama the played across the Roman world. The only thing a historian would have against Tacitus would be the twisting of the chronology to suit his own purposes. Yet like Agricola and Germany, my biggest complaint is how Oxford World Classics edition is structured with the Notes at the very end of the piece and making the reader use two bookmarks so they could go back and forth.

The Histories, the first of Tacitus’ two large scale historical works, shows the horrors of civil war and the according to Tacitus the dangers of leader who cannot control the legions and masses. Even though the we are missing over two-thirds of the overall work, the portion we have that covers the Year of Four Emperors shows the breakdown of society in vacuum of strong leadership that is important not only in that time but throughout all of history including down to our own time. ( )
  mattries37315 | Aug 4, 2018 |
Elegantly phrased and fascinating. ( )
  aurelas | Dec 23, 2016 |
Edition: // Descr: 453 p. 19.5 cm. // Series: Call No. { 878 T11 15 } With Notes for Colleges by W.S. Tyler Contains Indexes of Person and Places and to the Notes. // //
  ColgateClassics | Oct 26, 2012 |
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» Lägg till fler författare (44 möjliga)

Författarens namnRollTyp av författareVerk?Status
TacitusFörfattareprimär författarealla utgåvorbekräftat
Bötticher, WilhelmÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Church, Alfred JohnÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Dessì, FeliceÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Fisher, C.D.Redaktörmedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Fyfe, William HamiltonÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Vretska, HelmuthHerausgebermedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
Wellesley, KennethÖversättaremedförfattarevissa utgåvorbekräftat
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I shall begin my work with the year in which Sevius Galba and Titus Vinius were consuls, the former for the second time.
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This contains all surviving books (i.e. Books 1-5) of Tacitus' Histories in translation (i.e. without a Latin text). Please do not combine with partial editions or versions with Latin texts.
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In The Histories Cornelius Tacitus, widely regarded as the greatest of all Roman historians, describes with cynical power the murderous `year of the Four Emperors' - AD 69 - when in just a few months the whole of the Roman Empire was torn apart by civil war. W.H. Fyfe's classic translation has been substantially revised and supplied with extensive historical and literary notes. The Introduction examines the subtleties of Tactitus' writing and gives the necessary political and social background.

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