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Bible Dictionaries

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible


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CÆSAR . This is the cognomen or surname of the gens Julia , which was borne, for example, by its most illustrious representative, Caius Julius Cæsar. The emperor Augustus (b.c. 23 a.d. 14) had it by adoption, and was officially named ‘Imperator Cæsar Augustus.’ His stepson, the emperor Tiberius, officially ‘Tiberius Cæsar Augustus’ (a.d. 14 37), had it through his adoption by Augustus. It was borne also, amongst other less important persons, by the emperor Caius Cæsar Germanicus (nicknamed ‘Caligula,’ ‘Boots’) (a.d. 37 41), who was a son of Germanicus, the adopted son of the emperor Tiberius. These alone among the Roman emperors had it as a family name, but all the emperors bore it as a title except Vitellius (a.d. 69), and hence we find it continued in the titles Kaiser and Czar . The beginning of this use is seen in the NT. There the name is found always, except twice ( Luke 2:1; Luke 3:1 ), by itself, simply equal to ‘the Emperor.’ The remaining emperors of the 1st cent. are Claudius (wh. see), Nero (wh. see), Galba (9 June 68 15 Jan. 69), Otho (15 Jan. 25 Apr. 69), Vitellius (2 Jan. 69 20 [?] Dec. 70), Vespasian (69 79), Titus (71 79 81), Domitian (81 96), Nerva (96 98), Trajan (97 98 117).

A. Souter.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Caesar'. Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible. 1909.

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