Tacitus: Annals IV


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The fourth book of Tacitus' Annals recounts one of the most turbulent periods of Tiberius' reign: the conflict between the emperor and Agrippina's family moved to its twin climaxes of Tiberius' retirement to Capreae and the destruction of Agrippina and members of her family. An active agent in this drama was Aelius Sejanus, the prefect of the Praetorian Guard, whose own ambitions progressed closer to fulfilment in the course of Annals IV. This edition offers a new translation and commentary, as well as a group of introductory essays which highlight the book's main themes and personalities. These serve to draw together the fruits of David Shotter's research over twenty years in this field, and question not only the actual notion of Tiberius' villainy, but also the degree to which Tacitus subscribed to it. It is contended here that the emperor is shown by Tacitus to be the victim of other people, but also of his own weaknesses of character. As such, a sympathetic presentation of Tiberius emerges as the lasting impression of Annals IV. Although all aspects of Tacitus' writing are embraced in this edition, the emphasis throughout is historical. Latin text with facing page translation, introduction and commentary.

David Shotter is Emeritus Professor in the Department of History at Lancaster University, and has published widely on aspects of the Early Principate, Roman Coinage and Roman Britain. He has edited and translated Suetonius: Lives of Galba, Otho and Vitellius and Tacitus: Annals IV in the Aris & Phillips Classical Texts series.

Edition of Book IV of Tacitus’ Annals. Latin text, with facing-page translation, introduction and commentary.

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Author Information

David Shotter is Emeritus Professor in the Department of History at Lancaster University, and has published widely on aspects of the Early Principate, Roman Coinage and Roman Britain. He has edited and translated ‘Suetonius: Lives of Galba, Otho and Vitellius’ and ‘Tacitus: Annals IV’ in the Aris & Phillips Classical Texts series.

Table of Contents

Section TitlePage
Preface
Abbreviations
Bibliography
Stemma of the Julian and Claudian Caesars
Maps: 
  Map 1. Italy
  Map 2. Western Europe and North Africa
  Map 3. The Rhine and Danube Province
  Map 4. Greece, the Aegean and Asia Minor
Introduction
  1. The Life and Views of Tacitus
  2. The Annales
  3. Tiberius
  4. The Family of Germanicus
  5. Sejanus
  6. The Sources of the Annales
  7. The Contents of Annales IV
Plates:
  1. Imperial Virtues
  2. The Imperial Family
  3. (i) The Imperial Family
      (ii) Historical Events
  4. The Emperor's Public Relations
Text and Translation
Commentary
Index