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Commentary On Chapter 7

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Chapter Summary

This chapter provides a few briefly described intrigues in the higher echelons of the western imperial administration. It then focuses on assessment of Valentinians character and behaviour. The author transforms his feelings into an indictment: Valentinian was incapable of controlling himself, and gave in to his anger readily and culpably in various situations. This is illustrated with six examples, ordered in three pairs. Unfortunately, the succinctness of the report on the situations in question makes it very hard, if not well-nigh impossible, for the modern reader, to get a grip on the precise controversies at stake. The chapter finally provides the gloomy observation that some emperors not only refuse to listen to critical advice from their friends but also deter their enemies from speaking up.

Keywords: Gratian; Valentinian



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