You are not currently logged in. Please create an account or log in to view the full course.

Tacitus: Histories: Book 1

2. Galba

This is the course trailer. Please create an account or log in to view this lecture.

 
  • Description
  • Cite

About this Lecture

Lecture

In this module, we focus on the figure of Galba, the man who is Emperor at the beginning of the Histories. In particular, we think about: (i) the three defining features of Galba’s character – his stinginess, his sternness, and his old age; (ii) the positive aspects of Galba’s character, including his nobility in refusing to bribe his soldiers (legi a se militem, non emi, 1.5); (iii) the importance (or otherwise) of Galba’s last words at 1.41; and (iv) Tacitus’ ‘obituary’ for Galba at 1.49.

Course

In this module, Dr Chris Whitton (University of Cambridge) explores Tacitus’ Histories, Book 1. In the first module, we provide an introduction to Tacitus and the Histories at a whole, before turning in the second and third modules to the figures of Galba and Otho. In the fourth module, we think about the role of the Roman army in 69 AD and Tacitus’ views on the inversion of hierarchy, before turning in the fifth module to think about how truth and power work for Tacitus. Finally, in the sixth module, we consider how the events of 69 AD might have resonated with events of Tacitus’ own lifetime. In a short seventh module, we provide some ideas for further reading, including some of the highlights of the rest of the Histories, the work of Plutarch and Suetonius, Tacitus’ Annals, and some secondary literature.

Lecturer

Dr Christopher Whitton studied Classics at St John’s College, Cambridge, where he then wrote a PhD on the works of Tacitus and Pliny. He has taught at Cambridge since 2007, where he is now a Senior Lecturer in Classics and a Fellow of Emmanuel College.

His particular area of expertise is Latin imperial prose literature, in particular Pliny’s Epistles and the works of Tacitus. Among other things, he’s currently writing a commentary on Annals 14.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Whitton, C. (2019, November 27). Tacitus: Histories: Book 1 - Galba [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://www.massolit.io/courses/tacitus-histories-book-1-1d57d270-4633-4b7c-9c39-9311d40a4d01/galba

MLA style

Whitton, Christopher. "Tacitus: Histories: Book 1 – Galba." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 27 Nov 2019, https://www.massolit.io/courses/tacitus-histories-book-1-1d57d270-4633-4b7c-9c39-9311d40a4d01/galba

Get instant access to over 4,000 lectures