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Fear of death

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Emperor Claudius

Roman citizen Caecina Petus was involved in a plot (42 CE) against Emperor Claudius. Sentenced to death by the emperor, he was to take his own life. He hesitated, however, and could not dare to deal himself a fatal blow.

Then his wife Arria snatched the sword from her husband and stuck it in her chest – thus wanting to give him courage. Before she died, she said: “It doesn’t hurt, Paetus” (Non dolet, Paete!).

  • Pliny the Younger, Letters , III.16

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