The True Context
Of Ancient History
'The composition of the oligarchy of government therefore emerges as the dominant theme of political history...'
Syme, Sir Ronald, The Roman Revolution, Preface
If ancient Rome was indeed controlled by an oligarchy, and that oligarchy controlled all publishing, that changes the way ancient history should be researched.
Historical investigation is the rigorous and independent minded investigation of our past that is not glued to traditions, beliefs, and faith claims. The ability to be open-minded and let the evidence reveal what it will is of paramount importance, no matter how uncomfortable the results may be. Sometimes that means going against preconceptions and the consensus.
The evidence presented on this site points to ancient Rome being run by an oligarchy, with very little hope of truthful information being presented forthrightly in anything that was written as it all came from an oligarchy who shared hidden motives. There were no specific rules regarding who could publish written works for the public within the Roman Empire, both historical and religious. However, realistically the only people that had the means to do so were those of the elite class. That limits who could have written any literature for public use, including the early Christian scripture.
When the New Testament literature was being produced - apart from the fact that at that point, and it can be argued before and after, the emperor had the power to approve or disallow the production and publishing of any complex material - the composition of those writings, and general historical writings, would have required adequate storage of source materials - vell /papyrus, inks and supplies, as well as adequate storage for completed works.
Secretaries/scribes would also have been needed for any dictation and duplication. Any building in which this work took place would need to be well protected from the weather and provide adequate light and heat. There would also need to be a means of distribution.
Evidence to support the above statement regarding the emperors control over publishing can be read in the following: Appian’s Cival Wars regarding Laena and Cicero; Tacitus’s Annals regarding Cremutius Cordus; Juvenal’s First Satire; Cassius Dio, Roman History, 53.19; bookshops were raided on occasion with undesirable books being destroyed.
Official book burning is recorded under Emperor Augustus and historians were considered to be particularly dangerous. We read of ‘Hermogenes of Tarsus’ being executed (Suet. Lives, 10.) Execution was enforced for libel and government officials selected and controlled what books appeared in libraries. More can be read in the paper ‘Book Burning as Conflict Management in The Roman Empire’, Ancient Society, Vol. 43. 115-149.
In the above paper it states the evidence supports the view that in the early Roman Empire the act of burning books that presented opposition to official policy looks to be rare. This does indeed appear to be the case. Instead, the action taken against the ‘guilty’ authors looks to have been banishment. We read of ‘astrologers’, ‘magicians’ and ‘philosophers’ being expelled, temporarily, from Rome on political grounds; Emperor Domitian temporarily expelled ‘philosophers’ from Rome and Italy on political reasons (ref: Suetonius, Domitian, 10.3; Pliny, Epistles, 3.11; Philostratus, Life of Apollonius, 7.3; Cassius Dio, 67.13.2-3; Aulus Gellius, 15.11.4-5; Lucian, Peregr. Prot. 18. – these philosophers returned upon Domitian’s death (Pliny, Panegyricus. 47.1). The evidence shown in my book demonstrates this is exactly what happened to the Piso and later Flavian family members.
The above facts mean the only people capable of producing the New Testament (New Law) texts and historical literature at the time is greatly narrowed down to the stated families mentioned just above.
Although the study of history today is an official science, the methods used in mainstream academia have only marginally improved since Roman times. The ancient authors wrote comments portraying how they were supposedly studying the work of other ancient historians.
The information on this site, and in my book, presents evidence from primary, and respected, secondary sources, showing that the elite authors carefully crafted their histories and religious texts to include very important information that could not be seen from a superficial reading.
The primary texts present complex literary elements, including:
The practice of adding up the number values of the letters in a word to form a single number, i.e. 666 or 616
Gematria: assigning a numerical value to a name, word or phrase according to an alphanumerical cipher.
The use of multiple names to refer to one individual. An example is as follows:
The distinguished Roman senator of the first century, Gaius Calpurnius Piso (known for the Pisonian Conspiracy against Emperor Nero), and his wife Arria the Younger are referred to by multiple names, including - Titia Flavia Sabina, who had married Gaius Calpurnius Piso (35-65 C.E.) of the house of Calpurnii, who was also recorded as Caesenni Paeti - Ref: An inscription presents the name ‘Paetus’, in regards to the marriage of Flavia Sabina (Arria the Younger), as a name used by the Pisone family - Flaviae T(iti) [f(iliae)]/Sabinae/Caesenni Paeti (uxori) Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum, 14, 02830; although the name on the inscription looks to have been connected to the wrong Piso family member. Also see - Syme, Sir Ronald. 1969: Domitius Corbulo, Journal of Roman Studies, Vol. 60, 27-39; Pliny., Ep. 3.16.7.
Titia Flavia Sabina is also recorded as Arria the Younger, wife of Publius Clodius Thrasea Paetus (Gaius Calpurnius Piso) - Ref: Tacitus, Annals, 16.22, 34; Juvenal, 5.36; Satria Galla (Titia Flavia Sabina/Arria the Younger), is recorded as the wife of Calpurnius Piso - Ref: Tacitus, Annals, 15.59; Caecinia Arria is another name recorded for Titia Flavia Sabina/Arria the Younger - Ref: Tacitus, Annals, 16.34, note 69. And Livia Cornelia Orestilla - Ref: Dio Cassius, Roman History, 59.8.7; Kajava, Mika. 1984: The Name of Cornelia Orestina/Orestilla, Arctos, Vol. 18. She is recorded as the second wife of Emperor Caligula (12 - 41 C.E.) in 36 or 37 C.E., previously married to Gaius Calpurnius Piso. - Ref: Suetonius, Caligula, 25.1
Vowel exchanging in names to create new names for one individual:
A simple example to demonstrate this is in regards to the daughter of Gaius Calpurnius Piso and Arria the Younger, mentioned above. In history, their daughter is recorded as 'Fannia'. Her name would have been Flavia Arria, the feminine form of the name Flavius and Arria combined. The 'F' in 'Flavia' was used as an initial and left in front of her Arria name and the 'r's in her name were exchanged for 'n's, which created the name 'Fannia' (F.Annia). - Ref: information regarding a 'C. Fannius', a barrister who wrote the biographies of Nero's victims, is given in the 'Prosopographia Imperii Romani' (Edmund Groag in Prosopographia Imperii Romani, No. 2, F116). In there it reads:
"C. Fannius (v, 5). Barrister who wrote biographies of Nero's victims.
Supposed a relative of Fannia, the daughter of the Patavine (P. [Publius] Clodius) Thrasea Paetus by his marriage with Arria, the daughter of A. [Aulus] Caecina Paetus (suff. 37) [T. Flavius Sabinus I]."
The late Sir Ronald Syme, regarded as the greatest historian of ancient Rome, who researched this information, stated in his paper 'People in Pliny': "Why she should be called 'Fannia', no clue." Logically, a Roman daughter would take the name of her mother, which in this case would be Arria.
In his publication, Emperors and Biography: Studies in the Historia Augusta, Syme gave ten ways to decipher fictitious names. Contained in a chapter called 'Bogus Names', he stated:
IX. Perverted names. "One example is clear. Using Suetonius, the author changed 'Mummia' to 'Memmia'. That is a mere trifle in the devices of the HA...One trick is to modify the shape of familiar names..." - Ref: Emperors and Biography: Studies in the Historia Augusta. Clarendon Press. page 8.)