For more than half a century following the death of Augustus
his place was filled by emperors who, either by descent or adoption, claimed
kinship with himself and the mighty Julius. They are known as the Julian and
Claudian Caesars.  Though none of these four princes had the political
ability of Augustus, two of them (Tiberius and Claudius) were excellent rulers,
who ably maintained the standards set by that great emperor. The other two
(Caligula and Nero) were vicious tyrants, the recital of whose follies and
crimes occupies much space in the works of ancient historians. Their doings and
misdoings fortunately exerted little influence outside the circle of the
imperial court and the capital city. Rome itself might be disturbed by
conspiracy and bloodshed, but Italy and the provinces kept their prosperity.
 A Roman emperor was generally called
"Caesar" by the provincials. See, for example, Matthew, xxii,
17-21, or Acts, xxv, 10-12. This title survives in the German Kaiser
and perhaps in the Russian Tsar or Czar.
CONQUEST OF BRITAIN BEGUN, 43 A.D.
The reign of Claudius was marked by the beginning of the
extension of the empire over Britain. For nearly a hundred years after Caesar's
expeditions no further attempt had been made to annex that island. But its
nearness to Gaul, already thoroughly Romanized, brought the country within the
sphere of Roman influence. The thorough conquest of Britain proved to be no
easy task. It was not until the close of the first century that the island, as
far north as the Scottish Highlands, was brought under Roman sway. The province
of Britannia remained a part of the empire for more than three hundred years.