As private secretary to the Emporer Hadrian, Suetonius gained access to the imperial archives and used them (along with carefully gathered eye-witness accounts ) to produce one of the most colourful biographical works in history. "The Twelve Caesars" chronicles the lives of the men who wielded absolute power over Rome, from the foundation of the empire under Julius Caesar and Augustus, to the decline into depravity and civil war under Nero, and the recovery and stability that came with his successors. A masterpiece of anecdote, wry observation and detailed physical description, this text presents us with a gallery of vividly drawn - and all too human - individuals.
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