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The Death of CaligulaFlavius Josephus$
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Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781846319648

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9781846319648.001.0001

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The Claudius Coup

The Claudius Coup

(p.32) VII The Claudius Coup
The Death of Caligula

T. P. Wiseman

Liverpool University Press

Sections 212-273 of the translation: Josephus returns to the story of Claudius, who has hidden in terror after the killing. A Praetorian guardsman finds him and carries him off to the main body of the Guard, who want him as emperor because of the popularity of his late brother Germanicus (Gaius’ father), and take him to their barracks. The Roman People are pleased, because they don't want a senatorial oligarchy in power. The Senate sends a threatening embassy to Claudius, who rejects it (advised by king Agrippa of Judaea); the ‘urban cohorts’, who had been under the Senate's command, change sides and go to the barracks to swear allegiance to Claudius. Claudius summons a meeting on the Palatine, and the first act of his principate is to have Chaerea and his colleagues executed. Sabinus is spared, but falls on his sword.

Keywords:   Claudius, Germanicus, King Agrippa, Cassius Chaerea, Sabinus, Praetorian Guard, Urban cohorts

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