Montag, August 15, 2005



The Emperor Hadrian was born in Spain. He ruled for 21 years from A.D. 117 until A.D. 138, when the Empire of Ancient Rome was at its height.
Under his dominion Sousse was the capital of the Eastroman Provinces.

Emperor Hadrian had a love of Greek Culture and he is often portrayed in statues and on coins with a full beard, which at the time of his reign was a Greek Custom, most Roman Men preferring to be clean shaven.
He also took a keen interest in architecture, and was directly responsible for the devolpment of many fine buildings and structures during his reign.

At the age of 52 Hadrian falls in love with the 17 years old guy Antinous, born in Bythinion (today in Turkey). This is the beginning of the intensive but very short love-story between the Emperor and the beautiful guy Antinous who dies 2 years later in the Nile, 8 years before Hadrian's death.

This is a poem, the Emperor dedicated to his young and very beautiful lover Antinous when his dead body was found at the bank of the river Nile.

Animula vagula blandula
hospes comesque corporis
quae nunc abibis in loca
pallidula rigida nudula
nec ut soles dabis iocos

(Vagrant soul, you tender one,
guest and fellow of the body,
Now you have to descend into places
pallid and rigid and nude,
Nor will you be playful as you used to be.)

The Eperor Hadrian, out of love for the cute and now dead Antinous elevates him to a deity.


Blogger Cocaine Jesus said...

the thing that srikes me most about this delightful piece on Emperor Hadrian is the tolerance in those times of homosexuality. perhaps, and even in these so called 'enlightened times', we could learn something from the ancient Greeks and Romans. Great post Castor!

8:42 vorm.  
Blogger castor said...

to Cocaine Jesus:

Yes, you are right! Did you read the "Memoirs of Hadrian" by Marguerite Yourcenar ?

9:40 nachm.  

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