Factually based, this historical novel narrates in autobiographical form the life of Tiberus Claudius, a curious person who despite his physical limitations and proverbial stupidity, ended up with the destiny of Rome in his hands. Lame, stuttering and called 'imbecile' by those around him, he knew nevertheless how to be a priveleged witness of his times, revealing this knowledge in his writings. The tale highlights the influence of two female figures in his life: his grandmother Livia - wife of emperor Augustus - and his wife Mesalina, both hugely ambitious and with a the great skill of leadership, and who used their husbands to give free rein to their desires for power, thus indirectly governing the empire. The author also spends time on the relationship of Claudius with his argumentative nephew Caligula, famous for his perversions and cruelty, who would make anyone who crossed his path a target for his madness. His uncle remained on the edge of his exesses, due to the care he took to always praise him, thus calming his megalomaniac delirium. With great skill, Graves depicts this strange antihero and the palace intrigues which surrounded him, achieving a detailed descprition of his environment, composed of the Rome of the beginning of the Christian era, taking the reader on a historical journey without equal. Translated by: Ely Pena.