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-'''Incitatus''' was the favored [[horse]] of [[Roman emperor]] [[Caligula]]. Its name is a [[Latin]] adjective meaning "swift" or "at full gallop". 
-According to [[Suetonius]]'s ''[[Lives of the Twelve Caesars]]'', Incitatus had a [[stable]] of [[marble]], with an [[ivory]] manger, purple blankets, and a [[collar (animal)|collar]] of precious stones. Others have indicated that the horse was attended to by eighteen servants, and was fed [[oat]]s mixed with [[gold]] flake. Suetonius also wrote that Caligula planned to make Incitatus a [[consul]].+'''Consul''' (abbrev. ''cos.''; [[Latin]] plural ''consules'') was the highest [[elected office]] of the [[Roman Republic]] and an appointive office under the [[Roman Empire|Empire]]. The title was also used in other [[city state]]s and also revived in modern [[State (polity)|states]], notably in the [[First French Republic]]. The relating adjective is '''consular''', from the Latin ''[[consularis]]'' (which has been used, substantiated, as a title in its own right).
-Incitatus was named not only a [[Roman citizen|citizen of Rome]], but a member of the [[Roman Senate]].  
-The horse would "invite" dignitaries to dine with him in a house outfitted with servants there to entertain such events.  
-==Caligula's folly== 
-The accuracy of the received history has been question by [[Historical revisionism|Historical revisionists]] such as Anthony A. Barrett. They suggest that later Roman chroniclers such as Suetonius and [[Dio Cassius]] were influenced by the political situation of their own times, when it may have been useful to the current Emperors to discredit the later Julio-Claudian Emperors. Also, the lurid nature of the story added spice to their narratives, winning them additional readers. 
-One suggestion is that Caligula's treatment of Incitatus was an elaborate prank, intended to ridicule and provoking the Senate, rather than a sign of insanity, or perhaps a form of satire, with the implication that a horse could perform a Senator's duties. 
-Barrett notes that "Many stories were spread about Incitatus, originating most likely from Caligula's own humorous quips." "Possibly out of perverted sense of humor Caligula would pour libations to Incitatus' Salus [health and well-being], and claimed that he intended to co-opt him as his priest." 
-==In popular culture== 
-Incitatus appears as a character in [[Bill Willingham]]'s [[comic book]] series'' [[Jack of Fables]]''. In the comic, Incitatus has the power of speech, and assists [[Bigby Wolf|the Big Bad Wolf]] in tracking down the [[Jack Horner (Fables)|title character]] during a [[Flashback (narrative)|flashback]] sequence set in the [[Old West]]. 
-In ''[[Atlas Shrugged]]'': Cherryl Brooks, a dime-store salesgirl who marries [[James Taggart (Atlas Shrugged)|James Taggart]], is compared to Incitatus during a high society party. 
-Incitatus is also referred to in the [[Randy Newman]] song "A few words in defense of our country". 
-In ''Wanted!'' by [[Kate Thompson (author)|Kate Thompson]], a baker's son finds Incitatus just as the Emperor's death is announced. 
-The incident has often been used as an epitome of Roman decadence. The comic poet [[Ogden Nash]] once wrote 
-You will be glad to hear the party turned out absolutely fabulous; 
-Some say the best since the one at which a horse was named consul by the late Emperor [[Elagabalus|Heliogabalus]]. 
-(Nash substituted Heliogabalus for the sake of the absurd rhyme.) 
-A Melbourne lawyer once remarked that Incitatus would have the numbers for premier in Victoria. 
 +==See also==
 +* [[Captain Regent]] (similar modern position in San Marino's government)
 +* [[Consularis]] (Roman gubernatorial style)
 +* Chronological listings of Roman consuls (in law always republican Magistrates):
 +**[[List of Roman Consuls]]
 +* [[List of topics related to ancient Rome]]
 +* [[Political institutions of Rome]]
 +* [[Consulate]]
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Consul (abbrev. cos.; Latin plural consules) was the highest elected office of the Roman Republic and an appointive office under the Empire. The title was also used in other city states and also revived in modern states, notably in the First French Republic. The relating adjective is consular, from the Latin consularis (which has been used, substantiated, as a title in its own right).

See also

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