Facebook X YouTube Instagram Pinterest NetGalley
Google Books previews are unavailable because you have chosen to turn off third party cookies for enhanced content. Visit our cookies page to review your cookie settings.

Emperors of Rome: The Monsters (Paperback)

From Tiberius to Theodora, AD 14–548

Ancient History > Rome & the Roman Provinces Military

By Paul Chrystal
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Series: History of Terror
Pages: 128
Illustrations: 60
ISBN: 9781526728852
Published: 21st November 2018



You'll be £12.99 closer to your next £10.00 credit when you purchase Emperors of Rome: The Monsters. What's this?
+£4.99 UK Delivery or free UK delivery if order is over £40
(click here for international delivery rates)

Order within the next 9 hours, 57 minutes to get your order processed the next working day!

Need a currency converter? Check XE.com for live rates

Other formats available Price
Emperors of Rome: The Monsters ePub (11.8 MB) Add to Basket £4.99

As with everything else, there were good and bad Roman emperors. The good, like Trajan (98–117), Hadrian (117–138), Antoninus Pius (138–161) and Marcus Aurelius (161–180) were largely civilized and civilizing. The bad, on the other hand, were sometimes nothing less than monsters, exhibiting varying degrees of corruption, cruelty, depravity and insanity. It is a sobering thought that these ogres were responsible for governing the greatest civilization in the world, simultaneously terrorizing, brutalizing and massacring. Tiberius, Caligula, Nero, Domitian, Commodus, Caracella, Elagabalus, Septimius Severus, Diocletian, Maximinus Thrax, Justinian and Theodora all had more bad days than good; they are all covered in this book.

Their exploits have, of course, been well documented since classical times but much of the coverage can only be called gratuitous, sensationalist or tabloid. This book is different because it is based on primary sources and evidence – and attempts to balance out the shocking with any mitigating aspects in each of their lives. Many of our monsters have some redeeming factors and it is important that these are exposed if a true record of their lives is to be conveyed. The book also examines how each of the twelve has been treated for posterity in literature, theatre and film, and the lessons intended to be drawn from popular culture through the ages.

As featured on Author Translator

Author Translator, Olga Nunez Miret

This series is well worth collecting!

Watch the full video review here

The View From The Turret Vlog

Chrystal works hard to shine an unbiased light onto these acts of violence in a way that considers the contemporary feelings of the Romans as well as the stark reality that these horrors led to mass pain and suffering for very real, very innocent people. It’s a heartbreaking and important addition to any history lovers book shelf.

Read the full review here


"Emperors of Rome: The Monsters" depicts the depravity that was Rome through its more deviant rulers. The author begins by describing in two chapters the "monstrous behavior" in Rome and the Republic. The bulk of the book follows with "The Imperial Monsters", from Tiberius to Theodora, some thirteen emperors and one empress. Inclusive biographical sketches of each describe their own particular depravity and its effects on Roman life and society. Profusely illustrated, this is an excellent addition to the "History of Terror" series.

Amazon Customer, David Poremba

This book is an addition to the very readable series that looks at the use of terror. The Roman Emperors were mostly monsters of one sort or another, very few being wise leaders of an Empire.- Highly Recommended


I found the book thoroughly compelling, hard to put down and fascinating in its depictions. The author has done an excellent job of research into his subject and presents his facts in a true and fair way.

I would recommend this book to any student of Roman life and also anyone else interested in the genre.

Read the full review here

Army Rumour Service (ARRSE)
 Paul Chrystal

About Paul Chrystal

Paul Chrystal has been history advisor to York visitor attractions, writing features for national newspapers, and broadcasting on BBC local radio, on Radio 4’s PM programme and on the BBC World Service.
He is contributor to a number of history and archaeology magazines and writes features for national newspapers. He is author of the best-selling A History of Britain in 100 Objects (2022). His books have been translated into Chinese and Japanese.
He is author of Factory Girls: The Working Lives of Women and Children published by Pen & Sword in 2022.

More titles by Paul Chrystal

Customers who bought this title also bought...

Other titles in the series...

Other titles in Pen & Sword Military...