novel I, Claudius ( 1934) and had also said that he thought the play would not interest a
modern audience. On the day before the present letter newspapers announced that Adlai E. Stevenson, following his defeat by Dwight D. Eisenhower in the 1956
presidential election, had joined Wharton's law firm as a senior partner in its newly
created Chicago branch.
Anderson wrote no more history plays.
209. TO JOHN F. WHARTON
[ Stamford, Connecticut] April 22, 1957
I forgot to answer your question about I, Claudius. The matter is
academic at present, I think, but this is the situation. There is very
little indeed in Graves' book that isn't also in Tacitus and Suetonius.
took care to avoid any fact or fancy that didn't have a basis in the
histories. I was quite willing to share royalties with Graves if I found
his book contained anything I needed, but it didn't so I forgot about
Maybe he did have an influence on me though. His book is very
dull, and that may have infected the play--
In no. 208 Anderson had failed to answer Wharton's question whether The
Golden Six was indebted to I, Claudius.
Tacitus (c. 56-117 A.D.), Roman historian whose Annales covers the period
from Augustus to the death of Nero, including Claudius's reign ( 41-54 A.D.). Suetonius
(c. 69-160 A.D.), Roman historian whose Lives of the Caesars covers the period from
Julius to Domitian. Suetonius is largely a chronicler, but Tacitus is an interpretive
historian whose sympathy for the freer institutions of the Republic colors his treatment
of the empire, and his sympathy corresponds with the theme of The Golden Six.
In May, 1958, The Golden Six was produced at Boston University, and on October 26, 1958, it opened for a short run in New York. It has not been published (see Catalogue, pp. 69-70), but an acting script is available from Dramatist Play Service.