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Chapter 6 - Living in an Age of Gold, or the Emperor As a Temporal Figure

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 July 2023

Panayiotis Christoforou
Affiliation:
University of Oxford
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Summary

This chapter explores the emperor as a temporal figure who inhabits time as a person and a symbol that gives time its shape. Different forms of temporal thinking are included here, such as describing the age of an emperor as golden and its concomitant images, using the emperor as a way to mark time, and the Roman concern with oblivion and being remembered in the future. This chapter also wrestles with the emperor as a focus of cult and devotion for the present safety and prosperity of the empire, how biography and history encounter the emperor as a figure for historical study, and how emperors can be resurrected to haunt current rulers and question their legitimacy.

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Information
Imagining the Roman Emperor
Perceptions of Rulers in the High Empire
, pp. 179 - 232
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2023

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