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The E-Sylum: Volume 3, Number 54, December 31, 2000, Article 12


Roman emperor Vespasian (Titus Flavius Vespasianus) ruled from 69 AD til his death in 79 AD. One famous Vespatian quote is "Pecunia non olet" -- literally, "Money has no smell."

Vespasian was replying to Titus's objection to his tax on public lavatories; holding a coin to Titus's nose and being told it didn't smell, he replied, 'Atque e lotio est' ("Yes, that's made from urine")

When fatally ill, Vespatian is reported to have said: "Vae, puto deus fio" -- "Woe is me, I think I am becoming a god."

(Taken from Suetonius' Lives of the Caesars, as quoted in The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations, (c) Oxford University Press 1999)

The "Non Olet" quote is featured in an online exhibit at the web site of the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna, Austria:

Wayne Homren, Editor

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