One of the most outrageous stories concerned Vedius Pollio, who fed slaves at will to the lamprey eels in his fishpond if they displeased him. This was deemed shockingly cruel, even by Roman standards, and Emperor Augustus himself intervened on behalf of a slave. One evening, when Augustus was dining with Vedius Pollio, a slave broke a crystal cup. To save the terrified servant, Augustus proceeded to smash all the crystal cups at the table.
When Augustus inherited Vedius’s magnificent villa on his death, he had it demolished so that the house would not remain as a monument to its evil owner.