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[orthodox-synod] Imperial status

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  • LJames6034@aol.com
    Suetonius, in his History of the Caesars, said of Julius Caesar (from whom the titles Tsar and Kaiser derive) was: Every woman s husband, and every man s
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 1, 2000
      Suetonius, in his History of the Caesars, said of Julius Caesar (from whom
      the titles Tsar and Kaiser derive) was: "Every woman's husband, and every
      man's wife." Yet, because the mythology as vis a vis the reality of his
      existence took European imagination into its embrace, so being "Caesar" came
      to be terribly significant.

      When Magnus Maximus was acclaimed Emperor ("Caesar") by his troops, in the
      late 4th century, that was in keeping with how most others came to power:
      The army. Marcus Aurelius, for example, more than a hundred years before
      Maximus, when he had passed the title to his son, took the boy to the army's
      camp, where the troops proclaimed him emperor.

      Time after time, the Pretorian Guard sold the imperial title. The saying:
      "Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown" was not coined for Roman emperors,
      but it might well have been.

      Though French kings did not claim to be "Caesar," they did claim the sacred
      chrism by which they were anointed came down from heaven. And, though
      someone here (derisively) spoke of His Most Catholic Majesty, Louis XIV's
      statement: "I am the state," as though that were not so in every autocracy,
      the very word suggests exactly that. "Autos" (self) "Kratos" (power)=
      "All power invested in that one person."

      Until Ivan, IV, the rulers of Russia were descendants of Rurik (whom I have
      characterized as a Viking thug). One might argue that God had chosen the
      one who succeeded his fathers, by natural selection (as it were). It was
      existentially verifiable. However, it is harder to maintain that fiction,
      when one is looking at a monarch who was elected by the Boyars.

      Besides all this, it was pointed out to me this morning that the anointing of
      emperors in Byzantium (upon whose ceremonial the anointing of Tsars depended)
      was directly related to the anointing of Baldwin Ironarm, in 1204. The
      first anointed Byzantine emperor was Theodore Lascaris, in 1205. This, it
      was asserted, was a bit of borrowing to prevent a Western oneupsmanship.

      In response, I answered what some wag said of His Brittanic Majesty, King
      Charles, II (whose monarchy was so venerated a "corrective" was thought
      necessary.) The wag said: "It must always be remembered that His Majesty
      also uses the chamber pot."

      When I was in England, last year at this time, I went to Battle. Battle
      Abbey, the structure built by William the Conqueror as a penance for the
      slaughter by which he became king, has a book store in it, now. At the book
      store, one of the clerks spoke of King Harold, II (the last Orthodox king of
      England) as "Our last native king. All the rest have been foreigners," he

      All of this to the contrary notwithstanding, Prince Charles, as Pretender to
      the Throne of Wales, has, on the symbols of the alien culture to which he
      belongs, the Latin inscription: "Dieu et mon droit." (God and My Right.)
      Yet, his ancestors came to power in Wales by force of arms, and crimes
      against humanity.

      It all depends upon who is telling which part of what story.
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