When Madness Rules - Katherine Roberts
Imagine living under an all-powerful leader who has gone insane. One act of madness follows another, until even his closest advisers and friends begin to realise he is not who they thought he was when he ascended to power. No, I'm not talking about a 21st century leader - however tempting the comparison! I am talking about Rome in the 1st century, when we were merely a barbaric outpost known as Britannia, and the Emperor Caligula was in charge.
Caligula was a nickname, given to the emperor when he was a small boy and accompanied his father on campaign wearing miniature war sandals. It means 'Little Boots', which sounds rather sweet to me, and maybe he was sweet at that age. But, after he ascended the throne in AD 37, something changed. Acts of madness and cruelty abounded, until Caligula's reign as emperor ended with his assassination in AD 41 and his uncle Claudius took over. It was a turbulent period in Rome, giving rise to many rumours, including one that Caligula made his favourite racehorse, Incitatus the Swift, a Senator and Consul of Rome.
|Incitatus attends a meeting of the Senate.|
|Roman racehorses harnessed to a quadriga driven by a young charioteer.|