Later Emperors

October 30, 2020
Later Emperors

Later Emperors is four poems, each of which approachesRoman history from a very different perspective. It is also fourvoices, each one concerned with the living and the dead: voices ofhistorians and moralists, voices of great (and not so great)emperors. Jones has written a book which is all the more for ourtime because it looks so clearly at other times and identifies inthem familiar patterns, difficulties, ambitions and desires.History becomes a crystal ball in which the past chides the future,the same mistakes predicted and made again, the same injusticesrepeated. The Byzantine historians Michael Psellos and Anna Komnenereveal themselves as the significant chroniclers they always were.The book concludes with a retelling of Plutarch's 'Consolatio AdUxorem', in which Jones considers what we might hold on to in aworld of suffering.