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4

(1887) [MARC] Author: Viktor Rydberg Translator: Alfred Corning Clark With: Hans Anton Westesson Lindehn
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Full resolution (JPEG) - On this page / på denna sida - The Roman Emperors in Marble - 1. Julius Caesar and Augustus

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4 ROMAN’ DA YS.
reminder that he had passed the age at which Macedon’s
hero had by arms won a world. He tried to help himself
by " discount :" the crown borrowed from the back of
the head, to cover the deficiency ; but at last the lender
too was bankrupt. Csesar’s biographers affirm that among
the distinctions the senate lavished upon him, was the
right to wear the laurel wreath that best accorded with
his taste, as the wreath hid his baldness. Be that as it
may, for every hair that fell from that head there grew a
lock upon " Dionian Caesar’s star,’’—the comet that
boded a new era for Rome, and that still, on antique re-
liefs rests above his head, as the twin stars rest above the
heads of the Dioscuri.
But enough of this statue of C^sar. The other works
of art under the same arcade and in the court of the
palace, seem to have been placed there and arranged in a
spirit of irony. Near by are to be seen two enormous
heads ; one, it is supposed, that of a colossus of Domitian,
the other, of an Otho. Giant fruits grown in the furrow
Csesar ploughed. Directly opposite to him a lion presses
his jaws unctuously into ahorse that quivers beneath his
grip. Civil war sucking the blood of the republic. By
the side of this stately group look out from the shade,
behind an iron grating, barbarian prisoners with hands
hewn off Shapes mysterious and threatening as if Saga
had placed them there, a warning of her death-sentence
upon Caesarian Rome. Near the head of Domitian, the
pedestal of an urn that held the dust of the elder Agrip-
pina. A handful of ashes of old Roman virtue.
There are other and better portraits of the founder of
the empire. Nowhere, however, do we find the Caesar
we dreamed of on the bench at school. Most of them
show us a dark, suffering, nay, agonizing face. Day and

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