69 AD: The Year of Four Emperors [NOOK Book]

Overview

The Year of Four Emperors, so the ancient sources assure us, was one of the most chaotic, violent and frightening periods in all Roman history: a time of assassinations and civil wars, of armies so out of control that they had no qualms about occupying the city of Rome, and of ambitious men who seized power only to lose it, one after another.
In 69 AD, Gwyn Morgan offers a fresh look at this period, based on two considerations to which insufficient attention has been paid in ...
See more details below
69 AD: The Year of Four Emperors

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$9.49
BN.com price
(Save 13%)$10.99 List Price

Overview

The Year of Four Emperors, so the ancient sources assure us, was one of the most chaotic, violent and frightening periods in all Roman history: a time of assassinations and civil wars, of armies so out of control that they had no qualms about occupying the city of Rome, and of ambitious men who seized power only to lose it, one after another.
In 69 AD, Gwyn Morgan offers a fresh look at this period, based on two considerations to which insufficient attention has been paid in the past. First, that we need to unravel rather than cherry-pick between the conflicting accounts of Tacitus, Plutarch and Suetonius, our three main sources of information. And second, that the role of the armies, as distinct from that of their commanders, has too often been exaggerated. The result is a remarkably accurate and insightful narrative history, filled with colorful portraits of the leading participants and new insights into the nature of the Roman military Morgan ranges from the suicide of Nero in June 68 to the triumph of Vespasian in December 69. In between, three other emperors hold power. We meet Galba, old, tightfisted and conservative, who was declared emperor in June 68 and assassinated in January 69. Otho, once Nero's boon companion, who was responsible for murdering Galba, seized power in a coup in Rome in January 69 and, to everybody's surprise, committed suicide three months later in a vain attempt to end the civil wars. Vitellius, as indolent as he was extravagant, who was put forward by two ambitious lieutenants, recognized by the senate in Rome once they heard of Otho's death in April, and cut down by Vespasian's partisans in the last days of December. And then there is Vespasian, the candidate who looked least likely to succeed, but (according to Tacitus) was still the first to be improved by becoming emperor.
A strikingly vivid account of ancient Rome, 69 AD is an original and compelling account of one of the best known but perhaps least understood periods in all Roman history.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Morgan's book is a fresh and accessible look at a period that has been discussed, with sometimes horrified fascination, since antiquity itself."—Times Literary Supplement

"Morgan's acute analyses and wry judgments on each episode as well as the whole year are indispensable, however one might differ on details, for he is never satisfied with the obvious or even the ingenious; his analysis of Othonian strategy before Bedriacum is particularly striking."—The International History Review

"A superb portrait of this enigmatic and intriguing year."—Publishers Weekly

"Few people rival Gwyn Morgan in knowledge of Tacitus' Histories. The result is a fine narrative, cogent and convincing, of this momentous year."—Herbert W. Benario, author of Tacitus Germany

"This important book on the Histories of Tacitus surpasses earlier works on the civil wars that shook Rome and its empire in the year of 69. Like Tacitus, Morgan illuminates the universal themes that make the history of this one year significant for all time—the political and social upheavals consequent on a contested transfer of power; the nature of military and political leadership, the psychology of the military and civilian masses who are involved in, or spectators of, civil war. General readers will be enlightened and moved by Morgan's narrative, while specialists will appreciate the solid scholarship on which it is founded."—Mark Morford, Professor of Classics Emeritus, University of Virginia

"Gwyn Morgan has produced a long-awaited and engagingly written account of the Year of Four Emperors that is unfailingly instructive and a pleasure to read. Not surprisingly, since it is based on a careful reconsideration of all the sources, while it will provide enjoyment for many, it will also prove controversial in some quarters."—Leslie Murison, author of Galba, Otho and Vitellius: Careers and Controversies

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199923694
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 12/1/2005
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 1,320,080
  • File size: 18 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

Gwyn Morgan is Professor of Classics and History at the University of Texas at Austin.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents


List of Maps     xi
Introduction     1
The Fall of Nero and the Julio-Claudian House     11
The Reign of Galba (June 68 to January 69)     31
Adoption and Assassination (January 69)     57
The Opening of the Vitellian Offensive (January and February)     74
Otho Prepares for War (January and February)     91
The War between Otho and Vitellius (March and April)     112
The Reign of Vitellius (April to September 69)     139
The Beginning of the End: Vespasian through August 69     170
The Opening of the Flavian Offensive (August to October)     190
End Game (November and December)     214
Conclusion     256
Appendices
The Principal Sources for 68/69     269
Characterizations of Galba and Otho     284
Checklist of the Legions Operational in 68/69     291
Notes     301
Index     315
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)