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Quote of the day: Able but contemptuously indifferent
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Annals by Tacitus
Translated by Alfred John Church and William Jackson Brodribb
Book XI Chapter 37: Fall of Messalina. In the garden of Lucullus[AD 48]
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Messalina meanwhile, in the gardens of Lucullus, was struggling for life, and writing letters of entreaty, as she alternated between hope and fury. In her extremity, it was her pride alone which forsook her. Had not Narcissus hurried on her death, ruin would have recoiled on her accuser. Claudius had returned home to an early banquet; then, in softened mood, when the wine had warmed him, he bade some one go and tell the poor creature (this is the word which they say he used) to come the morrow and plead her cause. Hearing this, seeing too that his wrath was subsiding and his passion returning, and fearing, in the event of delay, the effect of approaching night and conjugal recollections, Narcissus rushed out, and ordered the centurions and the tribunes, who were on guard, to accomplish the deed of blood. Such, he said, was the emperor's bidding. Evodus, one of the freedmen, was appointed to watch and complete the affair. Hurrying on before with all speed to the gardens, he found Messalina stretched upon the ground, while by her side sat Lepida, her mother, who, though estranged from her daughter in prosperity, was now melted to pity by her inevitable doom, and urged her not to wait for the executioner. Life, she said, was over; all that could be looked for was honour in death. But in that heart, utterly corrupted by profligacy, nothing noble remained. She still prolonged her tears and idle complaints, till the gates were forced open by the rush of the new comers, and there stood at her side the tribune, sternly silent, and the freedman, overwhelming her with the copious insults of a servile tongue.

Event: Fall of Messalina

Interim Messalina Lucullianis in hortis prolatare vitam, componere preces, non nulla spe et aliquando ira: tantum inter extrema superbiae gerebat. ac ni caedem eius Narcissus properavisset, verterat pernicies in accusatorem. nam Claudius domum regressus et tempestivis epulis delenitus, ubi vino incaluit, iri iubet nuntiarique miserae (hoc enim verbo usum ferunt) dicendam ad causam postera die adesset. quod ubi auditum et languescere ira, redire amor ac, si cunctarentur, propinqua nox et uxorii cubiculi memoria timebantur, prorumpit Narcissus denuntiatque centurionibus et tribuno, qui aderat, exequi caedem: ita imperatorem iubere. custos et exactor e libertis Euodus datur; isque raptim in hortos praegressus repperit fusam humi, adsidente matre Lepida, quae florenti filiae haud concors supremis eius necessitatibus ad miserationem evicta erat suadebatque ne percussorem opperiretur: transisse vitam neque aliud quam morti decus quaerendum. sed animo per libidines corrupto nihil honestum inerat; lacrimaeque et questus inriti ducebantur, cum impetu venientium pulsae fores adstititque tribunus per silentium, at libertus increpans multis et