Department of Classics and Archaeology

New Book: edition and commentary on Tacitus Annals 11

The Annuals of Tacitus Book 11

Simon Malloch's The Annals of Tacitus

Dr Simon Malloch's new edition and commentary on Tacitus' Annals 11 has been published by Cambridge University Press. Book 11, the first of the later books of the Annals to survive, narrates two years in the reign of Claudius, AD 47–8.

While Claudius is busy with the duties of his censorship, his wife Messalina is having a very public love affair with the young aristocrat Silius that eventually ruins her. In a book that also treats German, eastern, and other Roman internal affairs, a third of the surviving narrative is devoted to the destruction of Messalina. Here we encounter the classic portrayal of a Claudius ignorant and manipulated by those around him in an extended narrative that shows Tacitus at his dramatic and cynical best.

This edition of Book 11, the first scholarly one in English in over a hundred years, contains a full introduction, a newly-edited Latin text with apparatus, and a comprehensive commentary that illuminates historical, historiographical, textual, linguistic, and literary issues that arise from the narrative. Funding towards completion was received from the AHRC. Dr Malloch’s research on the historiography of imperial Rome is reflected in his teaching, for example in his recent special subject on the representation of Rome’s emperors in Latin literature.

Posted on Friday 20th September 2013

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