• Dutch pdf available •
After his previous books Nero & Seneca, Athens and Classics, Anton van Hooff can be considered the ideal guide to the world of classical antiquity. In his new book Emperors of the Colosseum, Van Hooff examines the 27 years in which father Vespasian and his two sons Titus and Domitian were emperors of the Roman Empire. They came to power by brutally suppressing the Jewish Revolt and destroying the Temple of Jerusalem.
With the Colosseum, the emperors gave the city of Rome a permanent monument. But otherwise, the Flavian dynasty’s quarter–century reign was full of dramatic events: the Jewish War, civil wars, the revolt of the Batavi, city fires, a plague, the destruction of Pompei by the eruption of Vesuvius, and the bloody games during the dedication of the Colosseum.Contact us
The two centuries on either side of the beginning of the first millennium are usually considered to be the heyday of the Roman Empire. In this book, Van Hooff argues that the 2nd century AD is more worthy of the description ‘Golden Age.’ The empire reached its greatest extent. There were no civil wars. There was a construction boom throughout the empire, to which the ruins still testify. In quantity at least, there was an immense output of visual art, literature and science. Never were the ancient gods honoured with so many temples and festivals.
Starting with Nerva (96 AD), five emperors died in their beds – it wasn’t until 192 that another ruler was murdered: Commodus. This despot broke the chain of five good emperors. The famous historian Edward Gibbon considered that time to be the happiest period of all mankind.
In The Golden Age of Rome, Van Hooff shows how good emperors contributed to Rome’s Golden Age – and how Commodus, as one ancient historian wrote, turned gold into rusted iron.
PRESS ON PREVIOUS WORK:
‘Born storyteller of classical antiquity Anton van Hooff has devoted his recent book to three emperors. And once again he does so with gusto, thanks to his ability to combine the broad outlines of history with a little anecdote or a nice parallel from a later time.’ – NEDERLANDS DAGBLAD
‘Van Hooff’s erudition can be felt throughout. He successfully places the emperor in the context of his time. In that ancient, alien world, Van Hooff is an ideal guide.’ – TROUW
‘He is the perfect teacher, who effortlessly demonstrates the relevance of his story on every page.’ – HISTORISCH NIEUWSBLADContact us