Tanaquil was the wife of Tarquinius Priscus, who is known in history as the fifth king of Rome began his rule 616 BC that is where he appears in the Bible and World History Timeline Chart. Tanaquil wasn’t only Tarquinius’ queen, her cunning and influence helped Tarquinius to gain the Roman throne. She also managed to rule in Rome through her son Servius Tullius after Tarquinius’ was assassinated. Early in the 6th century B.C. Tanaquil was married to Tarquinius, and they lived in the region known as Etruria.
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Tanaquil came from a wealthy family, and she was a woman who understood how important it is to have power. She wanted her husband Tarquinius to be a ruling member in Etruria, but the people would not accept him to this position because he wasn’t a pure Etruria nobleman. Tanaquil realized that her husband couldn’t gain power in her homeland, so she convinced him to go to Rome and seize power from the old king Marcius. King Marcius was an old man who had two sons, and he befriended Tarquinius once he arrived in Rome. Tanaquil manipulated many people and events to get her husband into a good position with the King.
One day while King Marcius’ sons were away on a hunting trip, Tanquil had the people to vote Tarquinius into office as the new regent. The Senate approved this measure because Tarquinius had become very popular with the people, and this was primarily due to his wife. King Marcius was too old to stop the process, and his sons didn’t know what was going on until it was too late. King Marcius’ sons were teenagers who were supposed to become the next rulers. Tarquinius managed to convince the Senate that he would be a wiser choice than the two young princes. One day the two boys would become men and avenge Tarquinius’ treachery.
Meanwhile, King Tarquinius Priscus became the fifth monarch of ancient Rome. Once he was in power, he immediately expanded the number of the senate by 200 extra members. He did this so that he would always have a control of the Senate since most of them were sympathetic toward his rule. Once he became the king he set up the circus maximus that would become a Roman public spectacle until the empire ended. King Priscus also modernized Rome as much as possible by upgrading buildings and adding more structures such as an outer wall and sewer. The new king strengthened Rome’s military forces by expanding the cavalry units.
Rome constantly fought against the Latina and Sabine since it was first ruled by Romulus. During King Priscus’ reign, he fought against the Etruscan tribes and conquered these people once again for Rome. His military conquest expanded Rome’s borders further than any other king before him. Rome had now become a regional power that would help to establish the future empire that would emerge from the kingdom.
These were exciting times for King Priscus and his wife Tanaquil, but strange events started to occur at the palace that were going to change the course of Rome forever. According to legend, King Priscus had a servant boy named Servius. One day Servius was sleeping near the king and queen and as he slept strange flames began to burn around his head. Servius slept while the fire burned all around him, and as another slave was about to put out the flames, Tanaquil ordered him not to take this action. She then revealed to the king and the people that Servius was special and that he should raise as her child. The king agreed and Servius was made a prince. King Priscus and Queen Tanaquil had two daughters as well.
Some time had passed, and the sons of the former King Marcius were old enough to seek their revenge. They decided to assassinate the King Tarquinius. They managed to carry out their assignation plot, but Queen Tanaquil had kept his death hidden from the people. Instead, she told them that Tarquinius placed Servius in control. Once again the two sons of King Marcius were denied their right to rule. Eventually, the two sons of King Marcius were eliminated, and they no longer remained a threat. King Priscus’ reign would be the first in series of rulers who would make Rome one of the greatest empires in all of history.
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