Thursday, December 08, 2005


10th Grade English Speech—Caligula
March 25th, 1994

I. Introduction
The Roman Empire—A forum through which ran some of the best and worst history has to offer. Commonly ranked as second only to Nero in the worst is Caligula. He came extremely close to destroying the whole Empire, and only a handful of brave men were able to stop him. They were faced with the impossible task of killing an Emperor.

II. Background
A. Childhood
1.Born in Gaul-12 AD-with the army—father Germanicus famous general
2. Named
a. Gaius Julius Caesar in honor of ancestor
b. Dressed up like soldier at three—earned the nickname “little boots”—Caligula in Latin
B. Reign
1. Became the third Emperor after Tiberious—AD 37
2. Ruled wisely for the first few months, but overtook by an unknown mental illness
3. Treasury
a. Used up by faulty spending
b. Executed rich people on false charges for their money
c. Over 38 known victims
4. Germanic tribes
a. giving him trouble—marched troops down to restore order
b. boasted he would conquer Britain also
(1). Disloyal troops made this impossible
(2). As a way out, he told troops they must first conquer the sea, and had them collect sea shells in helmet—great humiliation
III. Trouble in Judea
A. Declared himself God—ordered the whole empire to worship him as such
B. Alexandria
1. When the Jews refused to do so, Greeks burned their houses
2. Tensions rose so high that the case brought before Caligula
a. Greek spokesman—Apion—claimed Jews failed to honor the emperor
b. Jewish spokesman—Philio—cut off by Caligula
C. Statue
1. Sent Petronius to replace Legate of Syria
2. Told Petronius to march to Jerusalem and place the statue in the Holy of Holies
3. At Ptolemais—met by thousands of Jews
a. Pleaded for peace
b. Threatened revolution
c. Threatened destruction of crops—famine
4. At Tiberius
a. Same result
b. Gathered meeting—explained situation
c. Wrote a letter to Caligula saying plan wouldn’t work
5. King Aggrippa
a. Grandson of Herod the Great
b. Pleaded for Jews
c. Caligula reluctantly agreed
d. Letter from Petronius
(1). Only agitated him
(2) Ordered Petronius to commit suicide, but news of assassination reached Petronius first
IV. Asssassination
A. Three Groups
1. Originally worked without knowing about each other
2. Later joined into one group
B. Key conspirators
1. Chaerea
a. High pitched voice—Caligula mocked with hand and password
b. Liberty
c. Republic
2. Sabinus
3. Vinicianus
C. Omens
1. Sacrifices squirted blood
2. Actors at play vomited blood
D. Plan
1. Get him when he left play to bathe and lunch
2. Caligula showed signs of staying through play
3. Vinicianus—urged Chaerea to do act—stopped by Caligula
4. Chaerea almost committed assassination in theater, but Caligula convinced to leave
E. Assassination
1. Took a shorter route—unguarded alley
2. met by conspirators—Chaerea asked for password
3. Usual obscene reply
4. Chaerea struck neck
5. Caligula ran but Sabinus pushed him down
6. Stabbed thirty times—fatal blow from Aquila—41
7. Litter barrens took poles from litter to try and fight off—little good
V. Aftermath
A. German body guards
1. Arrived and cut down anyone in sight
2. Many conspirators escaped thanks to Alcyon, Physician who smuggled many out while pretending to look for supplies
B. Wife Caesonia and daughter Drusilla killed at home by Lupus
1. Wife—ran through with sword
2. Daughter—head smashed against wall
C. Claudius made emperor
1. Stuttered so Caligula had made him clown
2. Found hiding by the soldiers, and then hailed as Emperor—Caligula’s Uncle
D. Executions
1. Claudius glad of Caligula’s death, but wanted to make example
2. Chaerea and others killed
3. Public opinion against—so executions stopped
4. Sabinus felt guilty—committed suicide
VI. Conclusion
Through the valor of brave men, who risked their lives to stop a madman, the empire was saved. The republic never returned. It’s time had passed for a while. But history will always remember those who died to save the world from the corruption of power—from Caligula.

Barrett, Anthony. Caligula: The Corruption of Power. New Haven. Yale University Press. 1989.

Josephus. The Jewish War. Grand Rapids. Kregal Publications. 1988 (Translated by Paul Maier)

Grade: 96% A-

Teacher’s comments:
Nicely informative poster. Excellent information. Excellent conclusion. I really enjoyed everything you said.
Delivery—look at the sides as well. Don’t play with your pen.
The test of a good speech is whether you are able to retain audience attention throughout. You do this well. Keep working on delivery skills. I’d like to see your positioning reflect confidence.
Time: 7:09—long!
A-( I really wanted to give you an “A”, but for a couple of reasons I had to take off points).

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