Meanwhile in Rome, people are just getting news that Germs is ill and they are furious at Tibbo and Livia.
Aha! They said.
Now we know why he was sent into the middle of nowhere.
He has probably been poisoned like his father Drusus was, because they both wanted to restore the Republic!
And then news arrived that Germs was dead.
The city was deserted.
People stayed at home and wept.
Markets were deserted.
Public life came to a standstill.
And this was BEFORE there was an official announcement of a mourning period.
But then, some clowns arrived from Syria and said “Nah, he’s fine, I had dinner with him yesterday.”
And the people did rejoice!
Like Ray did when they let him out of the bubble.
The celebrations were so loud they woke Tibbo up, all the way up in his mansion on the Palentine Hill.
People were chanting “Rome is saved! Germanicus is saved!”
Tibbo just stood there and waited for them to quiet down so he could convince them of the truth.
Hey I know he’s dead – I poisoned him! No what, that came out wrong.
So Tibbo waits to meet with Agrippina and Piso.
Hear both sides of the story.
The Senate meanwhile heaped honours on Germanicus.
TAC: New honours were devised and decreed, as men were inspired by affection for him or by genius. His name was to be celebrated in the song of the Salii; chairs of state with oaken garlands over them were to be set up in the places assigned to the priesthood of the Augustales; his image in ivory was to head the procession in the games of the circus; no flamen or augur, except from the Julian family, was to be chosen in the room of Germanicus. Triumphal arches were erected at Rome, on the banks of the Rhine, and on mount Amanus in Syria, with an inscription recording his achievements, and how he had died in the public service. A cenotaph was raised at Antioch, where the body was burnt, a lofty mound at Epidaphna, where he had ended his life. The number of his statues, or of the places in which they were honoured, could not easily be computed. When a golden shield of remarkable size was voted him as a leader among orators, Tiberius declared that he would dedicate to him one of the usual kind, similar to the rest, for in eloquence, he said, there was no distinction of rank, and it was a sufficient glory for him to be classed among ancient writers. The knights called the seats in the theatre known as “the juniors,” Germanicus’s benches, and arranged that their squadrons were to ride in procession behind his effigy on the fifteenth of July. Many of these honours still remain; some were at once dropped, or became obsolete with time.
The Senate also decreed that the day of Germanicus’ death was henceforth a day of remembrance on which neither legal cases could be heard, nor serious business could be conducted; no banquets, weddings, games or public entertainments could take place; and to accommodate for it, the theatrical games of Augustus, normally held on that day, should be postponed to the end of the month.
And Tibbo, for the most part, allowed all of these honours.
“The song of the Salii”.
In ancient Roman religion, the Salii were the “leaping priests”of Mars supposed to have been introduced by King Numa Pompilius.
He was the second king of Rome, after Romulus.
They were twelve patrician youths, dressed as archaic warriors: an embroidered tunic, a breastplate, a short red cloak (paludamentum), a sword, and a spiked headdress called an apex.
They each carried a bronze shield called ancilia, which, like the Mycenaean shield, resembled a figure eight.
One of the shields was said to have fallen from heaven in the reign of King Numa and eleven copies were made to protect the identity of the sacred shield on the advice of the nymph Egeria, consort of Numa, who prophesied that wherever that shield was preserved, the people would be the dominant people of the earth.
Speaking of Numa and his nympho Egeria…
Numa is reputed to have written down the teachings of Egeria in “sacred books” that he had buried with him when he died in 673 BC of old age.
When a chance accident brought them back to light some 500 years later, the Senate deemed them inappropriate for disclosure to the people, and ordered their destruction.
Back to the Salii.
Each year in March, the Salii made a procession round the city, dancing and singing the Carmen Saliare, a song in archaic Latin
Ovid, who relates the story of Numa and the heavenly ancilia in his Fasti (3.–392), said he thought the hymn and the Salian rituals outdated and hard to understand.
Anyway, during Augustus’ Principate, by decree of the Senate, Augustus’ name was inserted into the song (Res Gestae 10).
They ended the day by banqueting.
So now the same thing happened with Germanicus.
Then, by a strange coincidence, Germanicus’ sister, Livia Julia, gave birth to twins.
She was married to Tibbo’s son, Drusus.
He was obviously happy.
And people were pissed that all these good things were happening to Tibbo’s son, while Germanicus was dead.
BTW – TACITUS has a couple of interesting paragraphs here.
That same year the profligacy of women was checked by stringent enactments, and it was provided that no woman whose grandfather, father, or husband had been a Roman knight should get money by prostitution. Vistilia, born of a praetorian family, had actually published her name with this object on the aedile’s list, according to a recognised custom of our ancestors, who considered it a sufficient punishment on unchaste women to have to profess their shame. Titidius Labeo, Vistilia’s husband, was judicially called on to say why with a wife whose guilt was manifest he had neglected to inflict the legal penalty. When he pleaded that the sixty days given for deliberation had not yet expired, it was thought sufficient to decide Vistilia’s case, and she was banished out of sight to the island of Seriphos.
There was a debate too about expelling the Egyptian and Jewish worship, and a resolution of the Senate was passed that four thousand of the freedmen class who were infected with those superstitions and were of military age should be transported to the island of Sardinia, to quell the brigandage of the place, a cheap sacrifice should they die from the pestilential climate. The rest were to quit Italy, unless before a certain day they repudiated their impious rites.
We’ve talked before about how the Romans apparently didn’t mind the Jews – but at this point they weren’t welcome in Italy.
Julius Caesar formulated a policy of allowing Jews to follow their traditional religious practices, a policy which was followed, and extended, by Augustus
This gave Judaism the status of a religio licita (permitted religion) throughout the Empire.
According to Josephus, this incident had to do with some Jews who convinced a wealthy Roman woman who had converted to Judaism, Fulvia, to donate lavish gifts for the temple in Jerusalem – but then ran off with them.
She complained to Tiberius.
And he punished ALL of the Jews in Italy.
Which doesn’t make any sense.
Some scholars think there was ANOTHER reason for Tiberius’ harshness and that Jospehus has just decided not to mention it, in order to make Tiberius seem awful.
Might it be connected to the previous paragraph about prosititutes?
Was Fulvia a religious hooker?
Dio also mentions the expulsion and says it’s because the Jews were converting too many Romans.
Maybe that’s what Tacitus means by “infected”.
They weren’t of Jewish blood.
Also why they were given a chance to escape expulsion if they repudiated Judaism.