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Lecture 5

HIST 2904 Lecture Notes - Lecture 5: Migration Period, Tangled, Didius Julianus


Department
History
Course Code
HIST 2904
Professor
Greg Fisher
Lecture
5

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History of Rome Lecture 01/02/15
Link between Trajan and Marcus Aurelius
-conscious will be his guide, philosophy of imperial rule
-Like Trajan intrinsic idea of duty that he must give everything to perform this duty and has no
choice, this is a very Roman idea
-Submit to guidance of conscience
-Being emperor is a duty (Trajan) and Emperor has to carry out this duty
-Role of Marcus Aurelius is to put world in order, because the world at the moment is in chaos
and not a philosophical thing but in military, financial and health problems and his time as
emperor is to put this in order, and this is lacking in modern leadership and lacking
-Became archetype of philosopher king
Early life
-Birth in Rome, April 121 - M. Annius Vernus family Spanish
- Rule coming from out of rome to now back in
Influence
-Heavily influenced by Hadrian who wanted order and he did this by building walls and
traveling around it to put his own views on it
-Influenced by stoic philosophy that influenced thing like self control fortitude and bravery not
complaining when things got too difficult, taking things to the end and seeking moral perfection
living according to need and not want - bowl movements only going to the bathroom when
needed
-Complex and easily the most complex of the emperors that we have seen so far, and that is
because we know so much about him
-Adopted under the guides of Hadrian and groomed to higher rule
-Followed accelerated cursus
-Quaestor 139 (basic training for later running an empire)
-Consul 140 - when 18, just a label really but it gave him credibility and prepared him for the
next level (supposed to be 42 and 10 years between offices but being rushed through this)
-Close to Antoninus being adopted by him and married his daughter (Faustian) had 14 children
but only 2 survived with the best health care and drinking water but most of their children died
when they were very young
-147 marked for greatness, given usual offices that were given to emperors in waiting and
proconsular imperium, tribunician powers
Marcus Aurelius - spectacularly well prepared for the job
-Theory of government by successor
-But: a bit lacking in military experience, frail his job wore him out this is difference from
Trajan and Hadrian and this will be a tell because his entire life will be spent fighting and he
had to send others to do it
-Sick and constantly campaigning and the black plague staying in tents would do damage to his
health
-Threatened by all of these problems right now and face imminent disaster
-Irony of reign
-Spent 17/19 years fighting
-What about the other guy?
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History of Rome Lecture 01/02/15
Lucius Verus
-Empire’s first attempt at having 2 emperors he was also part of the adoption package
-138: Hadrian, via Antoninus Pius - adopted when he was 7 and will always remain the Jr
-L. Verus studied with MA did gymnastics and did everything together even though MA was
older
-MA became the preferred candidate to succeed Antoninus Pius but what happened is that they
would share power for the first time in Roman history and important to the significant to the
state of the empire but LV would always just be the “other guy”
-Essentially: became co-emperor
-First time - collegial admin at the top
-Of course: MA always senior partner
-Fear of civil strife? There is a problem but it doesn’t come from verus but verus general and
they try to say as far away from each other as possible
-Verus married Lucilla (Daughter of MA) disperse some of the tension between these two men
and to make family ties between them
-Idea of ‘harmony was cemented on coins between MA and LV with MAs head on other side
and the both o the other because MA was the senior emperor these two for most of their reign
we consumed by war
161 AD: war returned multiple fronts
Britain, Major wars between the Romans and upper Germania
Main Event:
Parthia, 161-66 very much the major threat during the time of MA the war lasts for 5-6 years and
the cause is the aversive king Vologeses IV - Arminia. Syria
-Parthia happens first and after that the German war beings
Roman Response
-LV Antioch in southern turkey but in Roman time the greatest city in the east before
constantenople was formed - took three legions from Rhine/Danube and he took with him
Avoids Cassis, famous general and with him one of the most important military minds and
thoroughly defeated them LV has nothing to do with it because he is hanging around Antioch
Roman response - despite Verus’ absences
-In short order
-163- Armenia retaken;
-Verus took title Armeniancus
-New pro roman king installed (ex-Senator) considered to be a reliable candidate so phase one
of the operation ends with taken of Armenia the exception of Parthia
-164/5 Parthia invaded
-Capital Seleucia-Ctesiphon sacked and burned
-Mesopotamia became Roman protectorate so it comes basically under Roman influence during
this campaign that the Romans captured an important part of real-estate the fortress of Dura
Europos what this did was give the romans a huge almost impregnable fortress and a superb
staging base for further invasions
Roman response
-Ultimately a major success
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