Nero the Artist Nero's enthusiasm for music, however, led him into difficulties. After it was over, 70 percent of the city had been destroyed. If Nero played anything during the Rome fire, it was probably the lyre. Verginius refused to act against Nero, but the discontent of the legions of Germany and the continued opposition of Galba in Spain did not bode well for him. Tacitus mentions that Nero's death was welcomed by Senators, nobility and the upper class.
Nevertheless, the expression "Nero fiddled while Rome burned" has such tremendous imaginative appeal, and is so deeply entrenched in popular thought, that it is unlikely that any amount of refutation will cause it to be discarded. Artwork of the Great Fire of Rome. Dispatching messages to his friends' palace chambers for them to come, he received no answers. During this speech, Nero spoke about "eliminating the ills of the previous regime". Roman—Parthian War of 58—63 Nero began preparing for war in the early years of his reign, after the Parthian king Vologeses set his brother Tiridates on the Armenian throne. He was supported by the Parthians, who only reluctantly gave him up,  and the matter almost came to war. When he called for a gladiator or anyone else adept with a sword to kill him, no one appeared. She is at present the holder of a departmental fellowship in the Department of History at that university. He threw open his gardens and public buildings to the dispossessed populace and brought in grain from the neighboring towns. This rumour was perhaps credible as Nero was known after all to be highly interested in the performing arts. As one popular account goes, Nero had been planning the construction of his grand palace, the Domus Aurea, but needed to clear a large area to accommodate the palatial complex. Furthermore, all the writers of the period who refer to Nero's musical activity agree that the cithara was his favorite instrument. To occupy oneself with unimportant matters and neglect priorities during a crisis. Nero Claudius Caesar Drusus Germanicus. Read the next page to find out more about the origins of the fiddling Nero story. Nero was such a bad guy, in fact, that he may very well have been the first Antichrist in the Christian tradition. Not only did Nero play music while his people suffered, but he was an ineffectual leader in a time of crisis. By modern-day standards Nero certainly appears a bizarre character, but that doesn't make this story true. Houses built after the fire were spaced out, built in brick, and faced by porticos on wide roads. This led to an active campaign against them. Anthony Barrett writes that Tacitus' account in Annals "suggests that Poppaea's challenge drove [Nero] over the brink. Britannica Newsletters Sign up here to get more Demystified stories delivered right to your inbox! Hence to fiddle received a new meaning. As is usually seen in such mass tragedies, rumors began to wind through the devastated streets. The governor of the province Gaius Suetonius Paulinus assembled his remaining forces and defeated the Britons and restored order but for a while Nero considered abandoning the province. The analysis of the first concept of fiddling requires a survey of stringed instruments in the age of Nero. Nero died four years later, and we should remember that history is written by the victors.
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