This post may be a bit premature. I'm looking at the NT as a cryptic history of almost all, if not all, of the Caesars through probably Domitian and not as far as Trajan. In Josephus' Autobio, he stated that he saw 3 people who were old acquaintances crucified and that when Titus ordered the 3 taken down, two died and one survived. Everyone takes this as a marker for You-know-what but the interesting passage is that the 2 died while under the care of a physician. I thought maybe that this was something like the Tiberius succession played out with the physician being Livia the poisoner. Or something.
Still working on this one.
Which brought me back to Galba. In re-re-reading Suetonius, I became struck by the number of elliptical references to Christian Types. At the end of Surtonius' "Galba", we find:
"He met his end in the seventy-third year of his age and the seventh month of his reign. The senate, as soon as it was allowed to do so, voted him a statue standing upon a column adorned with the beaks of ships, in the part of the Forum where he was slain; but Vespasian annulled this decree, believing that Galba had sent assassins from Spain to Judaea, to take his life."
Galba, of course, saw that Nero had sent assassins to kill him at the end of Nero's reign, and this may be the explanation of Pilate freeing Jesus or Jesus-bar-Abbas. At this time, Vespasian is sending for Titus, and this is after it is stated that Nero is keeping Vespasian's children hostage. "Who do I kill, Titus or Galba?" "Let Titus go to daddy Vespasian. It's Galba you should fear..."
The point is that Vespasian is seen as actively suppressing the mention of Galba and if there is to be a reaction from Galban loyalists, it would have to be an opposition history. An opposition history given in symbols and in secret.
Which means, of course, that all of this could be phantom trails and dead ends. So it goes.
Two quick passages which give slight and indirect pointers to such a history:
"Even before he reached middle life, he persisted in keeping up an old and forgotten custom of his country, which survived only in his own household, of having his freedmen and slaves appear before him twice a day in a body, greeting him in the morning and bidding him farewell at evening, one by one."
This gives the appearance of a bit of old quirkiness to Galba. "Why, he was even given to an old forgotten custom...". Yet, this is reflected in the Great Throne Judgement at the end of the age, when God sits on his throne to examine each of his servants.
The last one is deeper (and more prone to error on my part). It is a curious placement in Suetonius as it occurs at the very end as an anecdote written as a comparison of several of his characteristics:
"It is said that he was a heavy eater and in winter time was in the habit of taking food even before daylight, while at dinner he helped himself so lavishly that he would have the leavings which remained in a heap before him passed along and distributed among the attendants who waited on him."
As a further caution to my speculations, there is a note on this sentence which reads,"The meaning of this passage is uncertain and the interpretations various; see the long note in the ed. of Baumgarten-Crusius. The meaning of super manus is particularly dark; the most plausible suggestion is that it is equivalent to ante se."
I do not have access to this long note. Perhaps a real skoller can post it here.
Nonetheless, this has an interesting possibility. It is describing the beginnings of the Eucharist. I have already commented on several possibles here. The bread and wine go back to early Genesis and Melchizedek. I have thought that maybe it was brought back with Titus who promises to spare those who repent and who have faced the starvation of the Siege of Jerusalem and had to eat their own to live as long as they did.
This relation to Galba has some appeal. He is, after all, Caesar, even if by title and not by familial birth. He gorges himself and leaves the rest for his servants. "This is my flesh, this is my blood..."
Again, the key may be that Vespasian has taken an active part in the suppression of Galba' remembrance among the Senate. Vespasian is replacing the Spanish Prophecy of Galba's Caesar with the Star Prophecy of Judea.
If you were loyal to Galba in this Year of Four Caesars and you wanted Galba to be remembered, how would you go about leaving a clue in the new orthodoxy of a Star Prophecy?
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