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Quote of the day: Questioned by Nero as to the motives whi
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Annals by Tacitus
Translated by Alfred John Church and William Jackson Brodribb
Book XV Chapter 35: The death of Silanus[AD 64]
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While Nero was frequently visiting the show, even amid his pleasures there was no cessation to his crimes. For during the very same period Torquatus Silanus was forced to die, because over and above his illustrious rank as one of the Junian family claimed to be the great-grandson of Augustus. accusers were ordered to charge him with prodigality in lavishing gifts, and with having no hope but in revolution. They said further that he had nobles about him for his letters, books, and accounts, titles all and rehearsals of supreme power. Then the most intimate of his freedmen were put in chains and torn from him, till, knowing the doom which impended, Torquatus divided the arteries in his arms. A speech from Nero followed, as usual, which stated that though he was guilty and with good reason distrusted his defence, he would yet have lived, had he awaited the clemency of the judge. Eius minus frequentanti Neroni ne inter voluptates quidem a sceleribus cessabatur. isdem quippe illis diebus Torquatus Silanus mori adigitur, quia super Iuniae familiae claritudinem divum Augustum abavum ferebat. iussi accusatores obicere prodigum largitionibus, neque aliam spem quam in rebus novis esse; quin [innobiles] habere, quos ab epistulis et libellis et rationibus appellet, nomina summae curae et meditamenta. tum intimus quisque libertorum vincti abreptique; et cum damnatio instaret, brachiorum venas Torquatus interscidit. secutaque Neronis oratio ex more, quamvis sontem et defensioni merito diffisum victurum tamen fuisse, si clementiam iudicis exspectasset.