The New Student's Reference Work/Tiberius

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search

Tiberius (tî-be′rĭ-ŭs), emperor of Rome, was born on Nov. 16, 42 B. C. As the stepson of Augustus he was adopted by that emperor, and saw service at the head of the legions on the outposts of the empire. He was popular with Augustus, the soldiers and the people, and was married to Julia, the emperor's daughter. He ascended the throne in 14 A. D., and, according to Mommsen, was the best of the emperors. Tacitus grossly misrepresented his character and life. When power fell into the hands of Ælius Sejanus, a Roman knight and a commander of the Prætorian guards, a man of ability, Sejanus ruled well, though he murdered leading citizens, pouring tales of conspiracy into the ears of Tiberius. But Sejanus could not hide his ambition to become emperor in name as well as fact, and fell in 31 A. D. There has been an almost complete reversal of the unjust verdict of history on Tiberius. It is recognized that he ruled the people well, though the Roman court suffered injustice at his hands in retaliation for the disloyalty of the old aristocracy. Consult Mommsen's Roman Provinces; Beesley's Catiline, Clodius and Tiberius; Duruy's History of Rome, and Tarver's Tiberius. It was in the reign of Tiberius that Christ was crucified at Jerusalem. The emperor died on March 16, 37 A. D.