Suicide of Nero


On June 9, 68 AD, the Roman emperor Nero committed suicide, which brought to an end the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Discontent and rebellion within the military ranks plagued Nero in his final year of rulership. In desperation, Nero floated the idea of appealing to Servius Sulpicius Galba and the people of Rome to beg for a pardon. He eventually abandoned the idea and fled. When he heard the horses approaching, he forced his private secretary to kill him. The civil war that followed his death was a tumultuous time in Roman history, known as the Year of the Four Emperors, in which emperors Galba, Otho, Vitellius, and Vespasian all ruled in succession. Nero is remembered as being one of the cruelest tyrants of all time. He was perverse, had an incestuous sexual relationship with his mother, married his stepsister, and murdered members of his own family. Because of his infamous persecution of Christians, some Christian writers believed that he would return as the Antichrist.