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Old November 8th, 2009, 09:40 AM   #1
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Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


In ancient times many madmen ruled as kings, emperors and dictators: Phlaris of Sicily who burned his enemies to death in a brass bull; Nero who burned down Rome to build a palace, killed his mother and threw Christians to the lions; Herod who slew all the firstborn children in Bethlehem; King Ashurbanipal of Assyria who chained up defeated kings like dogs; Commodus who murdered his own father, killed people on a whim and attacked bound prisoners in the arena. But who was the worst?
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Old November 8th, 2009, 10:14 AM   #2

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Re: Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


Nero did not start the fire, nor did he just stand there and play the violin while it burnt. It is believed that he actually helped in the efforts to exstinquish the flames. Commodus did not kill his father- don't believe everything you seen in Hollywood movies!

I'm not saying that they were good emperor's and kings; they were all infact quite brutal, but some of their acts of cruelty are ficticious. From the Romans I would also add Caligula!
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Old November 8th, 2009, 10:49 AM   #3
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Re: Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


If we are to trust Eusebius of Caesarea, then Constantine "the Great" was pretty much a Stalin of his time:

- Brought the finally more/less calmed situation in Rome back to nasty long civil war just to get all the power for himself (http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf....ii.xxvii.html, http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf....xv.viii.html).

- show trials with christian officials who under torture "confessed" they were "only deceptious impositors" and in fact they were persecutors of christianity (http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf201.iii.xv.xi.html)

- Purges in christian church(es), persecution of anyone who didn't completely succumb to centralistic decisions, show trials with those who opposed, stripped of right to assembly (http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf....iii.lxvi.html, http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf...i.iii.lxv.html)

- stopped religious tolerance for traditional religions that was norm in Rome for centuries, persecuted them, brought down their temples, forced them to christianity (http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf....vi.iii.i.html, http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf...i.iii.liv.html, http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf...iii.lxiii.html, http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf...vi.iv.xix.html)

Of course those after him, who forbid "any discussion of christianity" under punishment that went up to death, any reading of scriptures outside church, etc., were not really much better.
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Old November 8th, 2009, 11:23 AM   #4

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Re: Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


I'll have to throw my vote to pretty much all of the Assyrian kings. Mentalists, to a man.
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Old November 8th, 2009, 12:37 PM   #5

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Re: Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sargon of Akkad View Post
I'll have to throw my vote to pretty much all of the Assyrian kings. Mentalists, to a man.
I second that - those Assyrians were a pretty wicked lot. Was it Agathocles that nailed live prisoners to his siege engines to prevent them from being set to flames? That's pretty wicked stuff, too.

As for evil Roman emperors, in addition to Nero and Caligula (the latter being the worst of the two) we have Tiberius, the bitter recluse who took his depression out on his subjects; Domitian, a psychopathic killer of - well, just about everybody except for the Germanic tribes he claimed to have so valiantly vanquished; and perhaps worst of all, Diocletian and Maximian, whose 'Great Persecution' at the end of the 3rd Century AD was an attempted genocide of the Christian faith.

Quite a few atrocities were attributed to some barbarian warlords of late antiquity, like Attila the Hun and Geiseric and Huneric the Vandals, but how much of that is just bitter Roman propoganda?
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Old November 8th, 2009, 02:05 PM   #6

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Re: Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


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Originally Posted by Salah ad-Din View Post
Quite a few atrocities were attributed to some barbarian warlords of late antiquity, like Attila the Hun and Geiseric and Huneric the Vandals, but how much of that is just bitter Roman propoganda?
Same storie goes both ways: in what way were all those evil Roman emperors truly that evil? The histories passed to us are mostly from senatorial writers, often disgruntled.
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Old November 8th, 2009, 07:57 PM   #7

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Re: Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


Gaius Julius Caesar was a bloody tyrant in Iberia...a wolf dressed like a sheep! He crussified all rebels in every conquered lusitanian towns that didn't want to fall in their roman ways...

Really nice job uncle Julius...
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Old November 8th, 2009, 08:37 PM   #8
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Re: Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


Quote:
Originally Posted by Salah ad-Din View Post
Quite a few atrocities were attributed to some barbarian warlords of late antiquity, like Attila the Hun and Geiseric and Huneric the Vandals, but how much of that is just bitter Roman propoganda?
It might have also been some Hunnic and Vandalic propaganda, like the Mongols nearly a thousand years later they capitalized most excellently on the fear that they inspired, many times capturing towns without a fight because of a brutal suppression of another town (or supposed brutal suppression.)

And I don't think any tyrant in history was evil, some just more cruel and oppressive than others, but everything they did was usually with the intent of helping their own people (or teaching their own people a lesson, sometimes in the form of a brutal punishment).
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Old November 8th, 2009, 09:07 PM   #9

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Re: Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


no one mention Ramses II. he kill all new born baby (boys). exept Musa AS.
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Old November 8th, 2009, 09:23 PM   #10

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Re: Most evil tyrant of the ancient world


I really have to disagree with you. Anyone can look at history from nearly any period and find rulers who were not only tyrants, but evil. since the begining of time there have been genocides in the name of religion and politics. murdering innocent people just because they dont agree with the views the leader propagates is never in the best intrest of the people. In ancient times Nero and Cesar both standout.
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