by Roman Piso

December 1999

from RomanPisoHomepageBookshelf Website



An example of how they did this was given in this style; each family member would have a profile containing personal and otherwise identifying data. This kind of information would consist of things like info about their careers, who they were related to, when and where they were born, who their immediate family members were and/or their ancient ancestors, etc. All of this was done for specific reasons and left not under one identity, but several. In this way, they could say whatever they wish and no one would be the wiser unless they were of the family.

At this point in time, it is uncertain as to whether or not the family formed a committee to decide the alias names for family members and/or just how much of what kind of data would be delivered (given out in public works) via each alias; or if the individuals in question were able to make those decisions themselves. But, we will share our preliminary opinions about this now in this article.

Some things that tend to make us lean towards the opinion that a committee was set up to decide these and other things are;

a) this is something that they were very serious about doing

b) doing this by committee would assure that each individual would receive the credit (acclaim) due them as decided by the group rather than any individual

c) doing it in this way would also help prevent arguments within the family (or the theory would suggest that at least)

d) there is no doubt this area needs to be better researched, but we can offer up the fact that some of the aliases and their accompanying data appears to have been assigned or left to later generations to place into their writings

e) it would seem that a committee would be needed just for the purpose of avoiding confusion.

Remember they had to contend with recently past family members who they would have to assure of their “fame”, and the current (contemporary) generations, and those yet to have their own careers.

One of the other things that would have to be decided is just how far a person’s identity should be hidden. Meaning, just how many aliases they would need in which to divide out all of the data for each particular person. It is precisely because history was done (left to us) in this way, that Roman history NEVER gives all of the data out about any individual under their public identity. The information that will allow persons to find out the true relationship of these persons to each other is given in ways that cannot be discovered or realized without first determining what alias names are the alter names of any given person who would otherwise only be known to us under their public names.


We realize that the way in which ancient history has been examined has been done in a very limited way that does not allow one to venture beyond certain concepts and think “outside the box” as the phrase goes these days. In fact, the very thought of Roman authors having used pseudonyms or alias names flies in the face of that very limited mindset. Perhaps that is why this has not been explored in the way in which it should have been before now. They did this, so as to give information about themselves and yet not arouse public suspicion over the fact that all of the persons who were writing history and becoming emperors were all related to each other - this way, they could hide this fact and make it appear that many diverse persons were writing as this would give the false impression of an amount of ‘freedom’ existing in the Roman empire (and thereby give ‘hope’ to the masses). And, this way, they could also retain power for their own family without the populace being any the wiser.

Time and time again, we encounter records of officiations of alias identities in different places for different things, apparently within the lifetimes of those Roman aristocrats, authors and rulers. What this may mean is that not only were the writers fooling us, the readers; but they and others using aliases in their own day were actively deceiving whole towns, cities and provinces in their everyday lives!

There are many examples that can be cited, one that comes immediately to mind is that of Arrius Piso. Abelard Reuchlin says of Piso in this booklet “
The True Authorship of the New Testament,” that:

Piso also shows his presence in these provinces (Pontus and Bithynia) - and also via Pliny’s (Pliny the Younger) letters. As Claudius Ariston (a form of Aristo/Arrius), he was the leading citizen of Ephesus (in Bithynia). That was the chief city of the province of Asia, located southwest of Bithynia. As (Flavius) Archippus, the philosopher, Piso had been honored by Emperor Domitian; the emperor “commended” him to Pliny (Lappius Maximus) in Bithynia; and he ordered Pliny (Terentius Maximus) to buy him a farm near Prusa. And the people of Prusa voted him as Archippus, as statue.”

Now, if we had that statue of Flavius Archippus, we would be able to see just what Arrius Piso looked like at that time! Little did the people of that town know WHO they were really honoring!

Overlapping or transposing characters (lives): the best example of the writers pointing us to what to do in order to discover what was being done and find out just who was whom regardless of the aliases that they were using is that which we are given by “Plutarch” by his showing us how to “compare lives” with his work “Parallel Lives” (of the Noble Greeks and Romans), which consists of a listing and comparison of 46 famous ancient Greeks and Romans.

We have answered elsewhere WHY they had to use alias names, but why was it (as we are finding) that they had used so many different aliases? One reason that has already been stated was simply to make it appear to the public that there were many more people writing in their time than there actually were. But the underlying reason was because they could not give too much information out about themselves (to the public) as any one “person”… or in any one place (book/work), as it would be too apparent just who they really were and what it was that they were doing. They were doing something wrong, very
wrong. They were deliberately deceiving the public and feeding them lies.

What we are saying is that in other words, it was not in their best interest to make it ‘easy’ to find these things out as that would be defeating the purpose… the whole idea of what they were doing. This, the alias names, was the solution to their dilemma of ‘wanting’ to tell who they were and what they had did, and at the same time being able to do that without jeopardizing the “institution” that they had in place.

The bottom line was that it worked and allowed them the ability to say things about themselves, promote ideas, etc. under one identity that would be too much to reveal to the public as their public identity. With aliases, they could say as much as they wanted and still preserve their family lineage and much more without anyone researching history ever being the wiser, at least until now.


  • See “The True Authorship of the New Testament,” by Abelard Reuchlin, ©1986, Chapter titled “The Creation of the Church,” pages 9-12.

  • Footnote: Apparently, many average Roman citizens met and knew Arrius Piso as he had gained their confidence and made their acquaintance (using other identities). It may well have been that since he traveled extensively and often that he had different names that he used in different places.

  • He states in his own works that the Jews (meaning the Pharisees) had many opportunities to kill him before he could make the new religion - and he taunts them about this. It seems that he was not content with fooling people with only his literary works, but also in his own real life as well.