The Augustan Succession: An Historical Commentary on Cassius Dios Roman History Books 55-56 (9 B.C…

Hardcover | July 21, 2004

byPeter Michael Swan

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Written in the author's maternal Greek, the Roman History of the third-century A.D. historian Cassius Dio is our fullest surviving historical source for the reign of the Emperor Augustus. In The Augustan Succession Peter Michael Swan provides an ample historical and historiographic commentaryon Books 55-56 of the History. These books recount Augustus's last twenty-three years (9 B.C.-A.D. 14), during which the aging monarch, amid dynastic tragedies and military setbacks, orchestrated the continuation of the constitutional and imperial system developed under his leadership, which endedin his transmission of power to his son-in-law Tiberius. The Augustan Succession is the first commentary since the eighteenth century to offer full and fresh treatment of this segment of Dio's work. This commentary pays close critical attention to Dio's historical sources, methods, and assumptions as it also strives to present him as a figure in his own right. During a long life (ca. 164-after 229), Dio served as a Roman senator under seven emperors from Commodus to Severus Alexander, governedthree Roman provinces, and was twice consul. An acute and interested contemporary observer of wide experience, positioned close to the seat of imperial power, he was a self-assured personality who embodied deeply conservative political and social views and prejudices. All these factors inform thepages of Dio's Augustan narrative, as does, above all, his doctrine that the best remedy for the troubles of his own age of "rust and iron" was rule on the model of Augustus. This is an historical commentary on Books 55-56 of Dio's Roman History. These books recount the last half of the reign of theEmperor Augustus, above all his orchestration of the first imperial succession. Addressed to both students and scholars, the new commentary is the first since the eighteenth century to offer full and fresh treatment of this segment of Dio's work.

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Written in the author's maternal Greek, the Roman History of the third-century A.D. historian Cassius Dio is our fullest surviving historical source for the reign of the Emperor Augustus. In The Augustan Succession Peter Michael Swan provides an ample historical and historiographic commentaryon Books 55-56 of the History. These books r...

Peter Michael Swan is Professor Emeritus of History at the University of Saskatchewan. He is general editor of the series "An Historical Commentary on the Roman History of Cassius Dio."
Format:HardcoverDimensions:448 pages, 6.3 × 9.21 × 1.42 inPublished:July 21, 2004Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195167740

ISBN - 13:9780195167740

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"With the publication of this commentary by Peter Michael Swan on books fifty-five and fifty-six of Dio, those consulting Dio on the Augustan era are very well served.... Any who consult Dio on Augustus will find themselves in Swan's debt."--New England Classical Journal