Memoirs of Hadrian


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Written in the form of a testamentary letter from the Emperor Hadrian to his successor, the youthful Marcus Aurelius, this work is as extraordinary for its psychological depth as for its accurate reconstruction of the second century of our era. The author describes the book as a meditation upon history, but this meditation is built upon intensive study of the personal and political life of a great and complex character as seen by himself and his contemporaries, both friends and enemies. Marguerite Yourcenar reconstructs ...

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Oct 22, 2009

An Emperor

I don't know why this book isn't better known. Written in the form of a long letter to his successor, Hadrian could be talking about today's problems. It ranges from maintaining an army in foreign lands to the effort to meeting fear with eyes wide open. As the author states, it is not only about history but about the living and dying of an "almost wise man".

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