Nero (Emperor)

Seneca: Stoic philosopher and Nero insider

Notwithstanding the murder of Britannicus, the first five years of Nero’s reign were an era of relative stability. This period—which the Roman emperor Trajan labelled the quinquennium Neronis—matches up almost exactly with the time of Seneca’s greatest influence over Nero.

And what looks even worse is that Seneca grew rich from Nero’s crimes. Following Britannicus’ murder, the boy’s wealth was divvied up, and Seneca, it seems, got a piece. By the end of the decade, the philosopher owned property not just in Rome but also in Egypt, Spain, and southern Italy.

from “Such a Stoic” by Elizabeth Kolbert (The New Yorker)