A well-plotted novel of army life and court intrigue in Asia Minor and Rome, as it is experienced by Duratius, a Roman soldier with the Praetorian Guard, and the only fictional character in the book. With his help, Elagabalus, the alleged grandson of the dead Emperor Caracalla, is proclaimed emperor and sets up court in Rome where perversions and depravities mark his short reign. Duratius murders him, and, marked for death himself, escapes to Britain, marries, raises horses and writes his story. The full background of history is used for an exciting picture of Rome's decline. For those who like fiction enlivening fact, this book will prove satisfactory.