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Life Of Caesar

Author: Cameron Reilly & Ray Harris

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Join veteran podcasters Ray Harris (The World War II Podcast) and Cameron Reilly (The Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast) as they go on a journey to discover the true story about the Caesars.

WARNING: This podcast contains jokes, rude words and references to politics and religion. People easily triggered by such things should not listen. You poor snowflakes.
48 Episodes
Caligula #24 – Hoc Age

Caligula #24 – Hoc Age


On the last morning of his life, Caligula entered the temporary theatre on the Palatine in a good mood. The conspirators attacked him in a narrow corridor, on his way back to the palace during the lunch break between performances. The lead conspirator, the praetorian guard Chaerea, stabbed Caligula in the neck, shouting "hoc age" - TAKE THAT! Then he was set upon by a crowd of assassins. Then they brutally murdered his wife and child. The assassins searched for Claudius to bump him off too - but he couldn't be found. The post Caligula #24 – Hoc Age appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
There's nothing worse than having a Finicky Anus aka Lucius Annius Vinicianus. According to Josephus, Vinicianus was one of the main conspirators. As we'll see, Vinicianus was a long history of conspiring against the Julio-Claudians - he was complicit in conspiracies to overthrow Tiberius, Caligula and Claudius. And his sons tried to overthrow Nero. The assassination of Caligula was planned to happen during the celebration of the Palatine games because Caligula had announced that he would be moving to Alexandria - perhaps permanently - the following day. The post Caligula #23.b – Finicky Anus appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
The final conspiracy against Caligula involved Cassius Chaerea, an officer of the Praetorian Guard; Callistus, Caligula's wealthy freedman adviser; and the senator Lucius Annius Vinicianus. Over the next three episodes, we'll explore whether or not the conspiracy was about getting rid of Caligula because he was batshit crazy - or because they wanted to restore the Republic. The post Caligula #22 – The Foot Stomp appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
My guest today is Anthony Poulton-Smith - Freelance Journalist, Author of 78 books, and many more articles, ghostwriter, speaker and etymologist. Chair of Tamworth Literary Festival, Tamworth History Group. He spoke to me recently about the Latin roots of some of my favourite words. You know what I'm talking about. The post Caligula #21 – Anthony Poulton-Smith appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Caligula got back to Rome around May 40 but stayed outside of the city until he could celebrate his ovation on his 28th birthday, 31 August. In the meantime he met with delegations from various parts of the world, including Philo's delegation from Alexandria, and Herod Antipas and his wife, Herodias, from Judaea. Conspiracies against him are everywhere. The post Caligula #20 – Hairy Antipasto appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Ray recently interviewed Lindsay Powell about Caligula. I asked Ray for show notes. This is what he gave me. "We talked of keeping the sources in context, considering the times they lived it and agenda. He went deep. Then his analysis of the events in the German border and the coast of Britain. And his apparent fickleness, which in a ruler, effects everyone but also how people like Suetonius probably used that." See? That's what I have to work with. The post Caligula #19 – Lindsay Powell on Caligula appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Caligula #18 – Living God

Caligula #18 – Living God


Many historians claim that Caligula’s demand to be treated as a living god is a sure sign of madness. And yet - JESUS claimed the same thing and nobody calls HIM insane. Why does he get special treatment? On this episode, we drill down into the evidence for the claim about Caligula. The post Caligula #18 – Living God appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Caligula plans his invasion of Britain. It would have been the first time any Roman solider had been there since Julius Caesar. What motivated his plans? Was he even serious? It's often portrayed as a stupid stunt. But we discover there may be more to it. How did it fit into his German campaign and the conspiracies against him? And how does it factor into Claudius' later invasion? The post Caligula #17 – Brittanicus Germanicus appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Sometime around the year 40, Caligula executed Ptolemy, the king of Africa Proconsularis and Roman ally. It's usually portrayed as evidence of his insanity and greed - but perhaps there is an alternative explanation. The post Caligula #16 – Bless The Rains appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Caligula suspects a grand conspiracy against his person and the sword falls on a variety of people - including the commander in Gaul, his two surviving sisters and his best friend / lover, Lepidus. The post Caligula #15 – The Conspiracy appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Caligula built a 3-mile long bridge over the Bay of Naples. Why? So he could ride over it to prove someone wrong. Then he marries his third and last wife, Caesonia. Then he fires two consuls for not celebrating his birthday and starts a general purge of governors who are called back to Rome and, in some cases, charged with majestas. There's conspiracy in the air. The post Caligula #14 – The Great Purge appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
In 39 CE, Caligula walked into the Senate and tore them all a new one. The gloves came off. The nice guy act was over. He criticized them for enabling Sejanus' persecution of his family and for criticizing Tiberius when in fact they urged him on. Then he reinstated majestas. The Senate responded by thanking him and singing his praises. The post Caligula #13 – No More Mr Nice Guy appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
My inaugural guest is Dr Nathan Brooks PhD from CQUniversity. He's a forensic psychologist with a background in researching psychopaths. He (and a couple of colleagues) have a new book that came out just after mine, called "Corporate Psychopaths". It's an academic book looking at many of the same issues as mine. It was great to speak to him last week and find that we agreed on everything, from the size and importance of the problem, to the causes and the cures. The post The Psychopath Epidemic 01 – Corporate Psychopathy appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
From his sickbed he named his favorite sister, Drusilla, to inherit the imperial “property and the throne”. But when he recovered, he decided to rid himself of some enemies, real or imagined, including Gemellus, Macro and Silanus, his former father-in-law. The post Caligula #12 – The Divine Drusilla appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Caligula #11 – Paranoia

Caligula #11 – Paranoia


From his sickbed he named his favorite sister, Drusilla, to inherit the imperial “property and the throne”. But when he recovered, he decided to rid himself of some enemies, real or imagined, including Gemellus, Macro and Silanus, his former father-in-law. The post Caligula #11 – Paranoia appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Caligula's absolute favourite thing in the world, apart from spending money, is screwing. And seriously, who can blame him. It's good to be the king. And, like Ray, he was happy to be a power bottom. He liked horse racing, and was fond of poisoning other team's horses and riders. He liked actors, and was fond of beating people up who interrupted performances in the theatre. I wish we could do that to people who write moronic iTunes reviews. And then, a few months after he became Emperor, Caligula fell seriously ill. It would be the turning point of his reign. The post Caligula #10 – “Anal Maintenance” appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
The Nemi ships were two pleasure barges, one larger than the other, built under Caligula at Lake Nemi. Although there were several attempts to recover them from the 15th century onwards, it wasn't until 1929 that Mussolini ordered the whole of Lake Nemi would be drained and they were recovered and housed in a museum. And then the Americans decided to drop bombs on them, and they were destroyed, lost forever. The post Caligula #9 – The Ships of Nemi appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
According to Suetonius, Caligula was quite proud of his "adiatrepsia" - shamelessness. He lived in habitual incest with all his sisters and was especially fond of Drusilla. He made her divorce her first husband and marry his friend and lover Marcus Aemilius Lepidus. In 37 he interrupted the wedding of Livia Orestilla so he could marry her himself - and then kicked her to the curb 24 hours later. Then he made Lollia Paulina divorce her husband and marry him - but he tired of her in six months. Then he married Caesonia, "a woman of reckless extravagance and wantonness". Six months into his rule, Caligula fell seriously ill.  While he was sick in bed, Macro and Silanus apparently prepared for the worst. They started the wheels in motion for Gemellus to be declared the successor. The post Caligula #8 – Shamelessness appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
How does a 24 year old kid, who's never even been on a battlefield, let alone lead an army to victory, get declared "imperator"? How would you handle it if you were granted ius arbitriumque omnium rerum (‘power and authority over all things’) and declared princeps legibus solutus (a princeps not bound by the laws)? Would you be able to handle it? We know we wouldn't. Who would we have killed? Find out on this episode. The post Caligula #7 – Going Back To Cali appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
One of the other first things Caligula did when he took power was to release Herod Agrippa from jail - King Herod from the New Testament. The grandson of Herod the Great. Which all gives me an excuse to talk about The Maccabean Revolt and a short history on Judaean politics from 169 BCE to Caligula.  The post Caligula #6 – The Maccabees appeared first on Life Of The Caesars.
Comments (24)

Top Clean

UK Virus Alert by John Cleese. (^^,)

Apr 25th
Reply (6)

Brad D

Did you remove the episodes from Life of Augustus. I could've sworn I was listening to it on this channel and then it just disappeared? If removed, do you know where I can listen to it?

Jan 28th
Reply (3)

Top Clean

Yes these 2 guys make history fun to learn. (^^,)

Jan 17th
Reply (2)

Ioana Azamfirei

vastatio= make desert, call it peace! :-D because peace, too, is in the eye of the beholder

Jun 24th

Ioana Azamfirei

fun fact:"Tata" is the word we use in Romanian for father . Also 'pull a Sulla' gets me giggling every time you guys say it... those sound like 2 words for the male member in Romanian. Yes, great general that he was, Sulla's name is a part of a dick joke in a romance language that's closest to Latin. Marius, on the other hand, is a respectable boy name. Funny how that "worked out".

Jun 16th

galactical thinker

Awesome show. I hope this at least goes up to the year of three emperors. If considering time jumping. please do Attetus and Attila the Hun.

May 2nd
Reply (2)

Joshua Reddick

omg! Cam PLZ STOP PLAYI G MUSIC AND SINGING ANLONG FOR OVER A MINUTE! I want info with a little fun, but the minute or 2 of your karaoke is unnecessary.

Oct 23rd

Jacob Bains

Is the dynamic duo planning to podcast Suetonius, with nor phallic comedy and Trump phillipic? :)

Aug 25th

Jacob Bains

Oh my goodness Ray and Cam, you have absolutely outdone yourself with the intro music to episode 98. I have always loved the (classic) sesame street pinball sequence. Thank you!

Jun 2nd

Alisdair Williams

No its not !? .. but it is very good :)

Jan 27th

Joe Yagama

listening to life of cisar is like watching the gladiator by russell crow

Oct 18th
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