Nerva By:Joshua Scott
Nerva, was Roman Emperor from 96 to 98. Nerva became Emperor at the age of sixty-five, after a lifetime of imperial service under Nero and the rulers of the Flavian dynasty. Nerva, much like Claudius earlier, was by all accounts most likely a reluctant emperor. He appear to especially seek out this office for himself. The historian Cassius Dio tells how Nerva, apparently in danger of being accused of treason by a paranoid Domitian, was approached by the conspirators planning the emperor's murder. It seemed he accepted the role of successor more to save his own life than out of ambition.
If the version of events is true or not, Nerva's accession to the throne was greeted with relief by many leading figures, tired of Domitian's tyranny.
Born: November 8, 30 AD, Died: January 27, 98 AD Marcus Cocceius Nerva was born on 8 November at Narnia, 50 miles north of Rome. Nerva was born into the household of a wealthy lawyer whose family was well accustomed to holding high office. Nerva's great-grandfather had even been consul in 36 BC and his grandfather had been a member of emperor Tiberius' imperial entourage. Nerva's mother was even the great-granddaughter of Tiberius. His grandfather was in the imperial entourage at the time of Nerva's birth. On his aunt on his mother's side of the family was even the great-granddaughter of Tiberius. The young Nerva naturally followed in his father’s and grandfather’s footsteps, gaining experience by holding a series of official positions. Nerva showed great political talent in his ability to hold onto high office as emperors came and went.
In AD 65 Nero awarded Nerva spacial honours for for his help in suppressing the conspiracy of Piso. Despite this Vespasian chose him to be his colleague as consul in AD 71. And in AD 90 yet again Nerva was chosen as a consular colleague to an emperor, this time Domitian. Such continuous success in high office marks out Nerva as a man who enjoyed respect from all sides of Roman society. Although there was a rumour that Nerva had sexually abused Domitian in his youth (as reported by the historian Suetonius).