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Headword: Klaudios
Adler number: kappa,1708
Translated headword: Klaudios, Claudius
Vetting Status: high
[Claudius] became emperor after having been a private citizen;[1] though he was not base in his soul and even trained himself through education so that he even made some compositions,[2] he was sickly in body so that he even had a shaky head and hands.[3] And therefore he also failed in his thought,[4] and he did not himself read all the things he referred to the senate; rather, usually at least, he gave them to his steward to read out.[5] But however many he read himself, he sat and read them through for the most part. And moreover he was in fact the first of the Romans to use a covered chariot.[6] However, he was not so harmed by these things as by both the freedmen and the women with whom he associated. [7] For he was very clearly ruled by women,[8] as he had been reared from childhood amidst safety and fear.[9] And he added still more to his stupidity by the fact that he even personally admitted it, and, living a long time with his wetnurse and his mother[10] and having associated mostly with women, he had acquired nothing befitting a freeman. And they beset him at parties and in bed. For he behaved insatiately in both and was easy prey in those situations. And furthermore he was a coward, which caused him often, out of fright, to fail to consider anything that was appropriate.[11] For they would scare him and reap the rewards and cast fear upon others. He then, being such, did no few things on request whenever it came about through the aforementioned passions.[12]
[It is said] that Claudius, the emperor of the Romans, put forth the law that a senator could not travel beyond seven milestones from the city without the order of the emperor. And, when some thought that sick slaves were no good for any service, since they also drove them from their households, he made a law that all those who survived from such sickness be free.[13] And he also did not allow anyone to ride through the city seated on a chariot.[14]
[It is said] that during his reign, when the Jews rioted against the Christians,[15] he put Claudius Felix in charge of them,[16] bidding him to punish them. And, when they were gathered together in the temple, they heard a voice from the inner sanctum and it said: 'We have abandoned those inside. And that has happened a third time'; after which they were annihilated in a total destruction.
Greek Original:
Klaudios ex idiôtou autokratôr egeneto tên men psuchên ou phaulos, alla kai en paideiai êskêto, hôste kai sungrapsai tina, to de dê sôma nosôdês, hôste kai têi kephalêi kai tais chersi tremein. kai dia touto kai tôi phronêmati esphalleto, kai ou panta hosa es to sunedrion esepheren autos aneginôsken, alla tôi tamiai hôs ge plêthei analegesthai edidou: hosa d' autos aneginôske, kathêmenos hôs to polu epelegeto. kai mentoi kai diphrôi katastegôi prôtos Rhômaiôn echrêsato. ou mentoi kai dia tauta houtôs, hoson hupo te tôn exeleutherôn kai hupo tôn gunaikôn, hais sunên, ekakuneto. periphanestata gar egunaikokratêthê, hate ek paidôn en asphaleiai kai en phobôi trapheis: kai dia touto epipleon tês alêtheias euêtheian prosepoieito, hoper touto kai autos hômologêse, kai polun men chronon têi titthêi kai têi mêtri sundiaitêtheis kai sunousiais gunaikôn pleiosi genomenos ouden eleutheroprepes ekektêto. epetithento de autôi en te tois sumposiois kai en tais summixesi: panu gar aplêstôs en amphoterois diekeito, kai ên en tôi kairôi toutôi eualôtos. pros de kai deilian eichen, huph' hês pollakis ekplêttomenos ouden tôn prosêkontôn exelogizeto. ekeinon te gar ekphobountes exekarpounto, kai tois allois deos eneballon. houtos oun toioutos ôn, ouk oliga deontôs epratten, hosakis exô tôn eirêmenôn pathôn egineto. hoti Klaudios, ho basileus Rhômaiôn, nomon prouthêke, mê dunasthai bouleutên huper hepta sêmeiôn tês poleôs hodeuein chôris tês tou basileôs keleuseôs. epeidê de kai tines tous doulous arrôstountas oudemias êxioun therapeias, alla gar kai tôn oikiôn ediôkon, enomothetêse pantas tous ek tou toioutou perigenomenous eleutherous einai. apêgoreuse de kai to kathêmenon tina epi harmatos dia tês poleôs elaunein. hoti epi autou stasiasantôn tôn Ioudaiôn kata Christianôn, archonta epestêsen autois Klaudion Phêlika, keleusas autôi timôreisthai toutous. tôn de eis ta hiera athroizomenôn phônês êkousan ek tôn adutôn, legousês, methistametha tôn enteuthen. kai touto gegone triton: ex hou panôlethriai diephtharêsan.
Tiberius Claudius Drusus Nero Caesar Germanicus was the fourth Roman emperor. He lived from 10 BCE to 54 CE and reigned, following his nephew Gaius Caesar (gamma 11, gamma 12), from 40 to 54. His adopted son Nero (nu 254) succeeded him. See generally Barbara Levick in OCD(4) s.v. (pp.323-4) and web address 1.
[1] cf. Suetonius, Claudius 10 (web address 2). After this the Suda begins following Cassius Dio (60.2.1-60.3.1). For discrepancies, see the notes below.
[2] cf. Suet. Claud. 3 (web address 3) & 41-2 (web address 4).
[3] cf. Suet. Claud. 2 (web address 5).
[4] Dio has fwnh/mati, 'voice' or 'speech', instead of 'thought' at 60.2.2.
[5] Dio has extra words at 60.2.2: a)lla\ tw=| tami/a|, th/n ge prw/thn kai\ parw\n w(/s ge plh/qei, a)nale/gesqai e)di/dou.
[6] Dio has an extra sentence at 60.2.3: kai\ e)c e)kei/nou kai\ nu=n ou)x o(/ti oi( au)tokra/tores a)lla\ kai\ h(mei=s oi( u(pateuko/tes difroforou/meqa: pro/teron de\ a)/ra o(/ te *au)/goustos kai\ o( *tibe/rios a)/lloi te/ tines e)n skimpodi/ois, o(poi/ois ai( gunai=kes e)/ti kai\ nu=n nomi/zousin, e)/stin o(/te e)fe/ronto. 'And after him, indeed, not only the emperors but even we, who have been consuls, ride in chariots. But earlier Augustus and Tiberius and some others were sometimes borne in litters such as women are, indeed, still accustomed to use'.
[7] cf. Suet. Claud. 29 (web address 6).
[8] Compare Dio 60.2.4, where it is also stated that he was ruled by slaves.
[9] Dio has 'amidst sickness and much fear' at 60.2.4.
[10] Dio has polu\n me\n xro/non th=| th/qh| th=| *lioui/a| polu\n de\ kai\ th=| mhtri\ *)antwni/a| toi=s t' a)peleuqe/rois sundiaithqei/s, 'living for a long time with his grandmother Livia and long with his mother Antonia and with the freedmen', at 60.2.5.
[11] cf. Suet. Claud. 35-37 (web address 7).
[12] The Suda has followed Dio up until now when it departs.
[13] cf. Suet. Claud. 25 (web address 8).
[14] cf. n.13.
[15] cf. n.13.
[16] Felix was a freedman of Claudius; cf. Suet. Claud. 28 (web address 9); Tacitus, Histories 5.9 (web address 10); Josephus, Jewish Antiquities 20.7 (web address 11); Acts of the Apostles 23-25 (web address 12).
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2,
Web address 3,
Web address 4,
Web address 5,
Web address 6,
Web address 7,
Web address 8,
Web address 9,
Web address 10,
Web address 11,
Web address 12
Keywords: biography; Christianity; daily life; ethics; gender and sexuality; historiography; history; law; medicine; religion; women
Translated by: Abram Ring on 25 November 2003@21:59:01.
Vetted by:
Catharine Roth (modifed betacode) on 26 November 2003@00:23:39.
Catharine Roth (more betacode details) on 26 November 2003@00:25:19.
David Whitehead (added alternative headword; augmented primary note, and keywords; cosmetics) on 26 November 2003@03:43:57.
David Whitehead (more keywords) on 3 October 2005@09:59:48.
David Whitehead (another keyword; tweaking) on 27 February 2013@07:28:16.
Catharine Roth (upgraded links) on 1 March 2013@00:09:19.
Catharine Roth (upgraded more links) on 1 March 2013@00:12:22.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 1 March 2013@00:15:43.
David Whitehead on 4 August 2014@06:52:51.
David Whitehead (coding) on 1 May 2016@08:35:26.
Catharine Roth (tweaked translation) on 31 August 2019@00:49:48.


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