Caligula born today in AD 12\.
On the 31st August 2001 years ago was born one of Rome’s worst Emperors. He was named Gaius Caesar Germanicus, but soon acquied the nickname Caligula, or little boots, as his General father would dress him as a soldier when on campaign with him. He was Julius Caesar’ s grandson and when his father died of poisoning, the Emperor Tiberius, adopted his great nephew. He was 18 and lived with his great uncle in his Capri palace, soon enjoying relations with his three sisters and learning to love torture and executions.
When the Emperor died, aged 77, possibly poisoned by the Emperor in waiting, he assumed the reigns of power, aged 25. It would be six months before his excesses came to the surface, however. He soon blew the 3 billion sesterces he inherited, so began a terror of executions on wealthy citizens, so as to be able to take their money. He hardcore a brothel opened in a wing of his palace so as to collect further revenue.
He would attend as many executions as possible and insisted the deaths be slow. Once a man so enraged him with protestations of innocence, that he had his tongue removed, before witnessing his death.
Although a young man, he was bald and supremely sensitive to it. He made it a capital offence to look down on him. He murdered family members too and made his father in law cut his own throat. It was not long before he proclaimed himself a god and built himself a temple on the Palatine Hill. He supposedly wished to make his horse, Incitatus, a Consul, keeping it in a marble stable.
Aged 28 he was assassinated by two Imperial Guards and succeeded by his uncle Claudius.
Many of them seem to have been unhinged. I think it was in the blood.