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Focas, 23 November 602 - 5 October 610 A.D.
Focas became emperor through a military revolt in the winter of 602 A.D. He was an oppressive evil tyrant. His reign was a period of disaster with invasions in the East and West, persecution of the aristocracy and civil unrest. Focas restored recognizable portraiture to the coinage - An oddity considering his appearance is often described as grotesque.
|The Column of Phocas atwas erected before the and dedicated to the Emperor on 1 August 608. It was the last addition made to the Romanum. The Corinthian column has a height of 13.6 m (44 ft). Both the column and the marble socle were recycled from earlier use. It stands in its original location, but the statue that was once on top was probably taken down soon after Phocus' death. An English translation of the follows: To the best, most clement and pious ruler, our lord Phocas the perpetual emperor, crowned by God, the forever august triumphator, did Smaragdus, former praepositus sacri palatii and patricius and Exarch of Italy, devoted to His Clemency for the innumerable benefactions of His Piousness and for the peace acquired for Italy and its freedom preserved, this statue of His Majesty, blinking from the splendor of gold here on this tallest column for his eternal glory erect and dedicate, on the first day of the month of August, in the eleventh in the fifth year after the consulate of His Piousness.|
|The Column of Phocas atwas erected before the and dedicated to the Emperor on 1 August 608. It was the last addition made to the Romanum. The Corinthian column has a height of 13.6 m (44 ft). Both the column and the marble base were recycled from earlier use. The column stands in its original location, but the gold statue was probably taken down immediately after Phocus' death. Silt and debris completely covered the marble base (socle) when Giuseppe Vasi and Giambattista Piranesi made engravings and etchings of the column in the mid-18th century. The square foundation of brick was probably underground when the column was dedicated. The was excavated down to its earlier Augustan paving in the 19th century.|
|The ruins of Antioch on thelie near the modern city of Antakya, Turkey. Founded near the end of the 4th century B.C. by Seleucus I Nicator, one of Alexander the Great's generals, Antioch's geographic, military and economic location, particularly the spice trade, the Silk Road, the Persian Royal Road, benefited its occupants, and eventually it rivaled as the chief city of the Near East and as the main center of Hellenistic Judaism at the end of the period. Antioch is called "the cradle of Christianity," for the pivotal early role it played in the emergence of the faith. It was one of the four cities of the Syrian tetrapolis. Its residents are known as Antiochenes. Antioch was renamed Theoupolis after it was nearly destroyed by an earthquake on 29 November 528. Once a great of half a million people, it declined to insignificance during the Middle Ages because of warfare, repeated earthquakes and a change in trade routes following the Mongol conquests, which then no longer passed through Antioch from the far east.|