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The people were so much elated at his death, that when they first heard the news, they ran up and down the city, some, crying out "Away with Tiberius to the Tiber;" others exclaiming, "May the earth, the common mother of mankind, and the infernal gods, allow him no abode in death, but amongst the wicked." Others threatened his body with the hook and the Gemonian stairs, their indignation at his former cruelty being increased by a recent atrocity. It had been provided by an act of the senate, that the execution of condemned criminals should always be deferred until the tenth day after the sentence. Now this fell on the very day when the news of Tiberius's death arrived, and in consequence of which the unhappy men implored a reprieve, for mercy's sake; but. as Caius had not yet arrived, and there was no one else to whom application could be made on their behalf, their guards, apprehensive of violating the law, strangled them, and threw them down the Gemonian stairs. This roused the people to a still greater abhorrence of the tyrant's memory, since his cruelty continued in use even after he was dead. As soon as his corpse was begun to be moved from Misenum, many cried out for its being carried to Atella, 1 and being half burnt there in the amphitheatre. It was, however, brought to Rome, and burnt with the usual ceremony.
1 Atella, a town between Capua and Naples, now called San Arpino, where there was an amphitheatre. The people seem to have raised the shout in derision, referring, perhaps, to the Atellan fables, mentioned in c. xiv.; and in their fury they proposed that his body should only be grilled, as those of malefactors were, instead of being reduced to ashes.
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