Classical Numismatics Discussion Members' Gallery
  Welcome Guest. Please login or register.

Members' Gallery Home | Member Collections | Last Added | Last Comments | Most Viewed | Top Rated | My Favorities | Search Galleries
Search results - "Galla"
Theo1Ae3Ant.jpeg
1505b, Theodosius I, 19 January 379 - 17 January 395 A.D. (Antioch)69 viewsTheodosius I, 19 January 379 - 17 January 395 A.D. Bronze AE 3, RIC 44(b), VF, Antioch, 2.17g, 18.1mm, 180o, 9 Aug 378 - 25 Aug 383 A.D. Obverse: D N THEODOSIVS P F AVG, rosette-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: CONCORDIA AVGGG, Constantinopolis enthroned facing, r. foot on prow, globe in l., scepter in r., Q and F at sides, ANTG in ex; scarce.


De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

THEODOSIUS I (379-395 A.D.)
David Woods
University College of Cork


Origin and Early Career
Flavius Theodosius was born at Cauca in Spain in about 346 to Thermantia and Theodosius the Elder (so-called to distinguish him from his son). Theodosius the Elder was a senior military officer serving in the Western empire and rose to become the magister equitum praesentalis under the emperor Valentinian I from late 368 until his execution in early 375. As the son of a soldier, Theodosius was legally obliged to enter upon a military career. He seems to have served under his father during his expedition to Britain in 367/8, and was the dux Moesiae Primae by late 374. Unfortunately, great controversy surrounds the rest of his career until Gratian had him hailed as his imperial colleague in succession to the emperor Valens at Sirmium on 19 January 379. It is clear that he was forced to retire home to Spain only to be recalled to active service shortly thereafter, but the circumstances of his forced retirement are shrouded in mystery. His father was executed at roughly the same time, and much speculation has centred on the relationship between these events.

[For a very detailed and interesting discussion of the Foreign Policy of Theodosius and the Civil Wars that plagued his reign, please see http://www.roman-emperors.org/theo1.htm]

Family and Succession
Theodosius married twice. His first wife was the Spanish Aelia Flavia Flaccilla. She bore him Arcadius ca. 377, Honorius on 9 September 384, and Pulcheria ca. 385. Theodosius honoured her with the title of Augusta shortly after his accession, but she died in 386. In late 387 he married Galla, daughter of Valentinian I and full-sister of Valentinian II. She bore him Gratian ca. 388, Galla Placidia ca. 388/390, and died in childbirth in 394, together with her new-born son John. Of his two sons who survived infancy, he appointed Arcadius as Augustus on 19 January 383 and Honorius as Augustus on 23 January 393. His promotion of Arcadius as a full Augustus at an unusually young age points to his determination right from the start that one of his own sons should succeed him. He sought to strengthen Arcadius' position in particular by means of a series of strategic marriages whose purpose was to tie his leading "generals" irrevocably to his dynasty. Hence he married his niece and adoptive daughter Serena to his magister militum per Orientem Stilicho in 387, her elder sister Thermantia to a "general" whose name has not been preserved, and ca. 387 his nephew-in-law Nebridius to Salvina, daughter of the comes Africae Gildo. By the time of his death by illness on 17 January 395, Theodosius had promoted Stilicho from his position as one of the two comites domesticorum under his own eastern administration to that of magister peditum praesentalis in a western administration, in an entirely traditional manner, under his younger son Honorius. Although Stilicho managed to increase the power of the magister peditum praesentalis to the disadvantage of his colleague the magister equitum praesentalis and claimed that Theodosius had appointed him as guardian for both his sons, this tells us more about his cunning and ambition than it does about Theodosius' constitutional arrangements.

Theodosius' importance rests on the fact that he founded a dynasty which continued in power until the death of his grandson Theodosius II in 450. This ensured a continuity of policy which saw the emergence of Nicene Christianity as the orthodox belief of the vast majority of Christians throughout the middle ages. It also ensured the essential destruction of paganism and the emergence of Christianity as the religion of the state, even if the individual steps in this process can be difficult to identify. On the negative side, however, he allowed his dynastic interests and ambitions to lead him into two unnecessary and bloody civil wars which severely weakened the empire's ability to defend itself in the face of continued barbarian pressure upon its frontiers. In this manner, he put the interests of his family before those of the wider Roman population and was responsible, in many ways, for the phenomenon to which we now refer as the fall of the western Roman empire.


Copyright (C) 1998, David Woods.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

There is a nice segue here, as we pick-up John Julius Norwich's summation of the reign of Theodosius, "Readers of this brief account of his career may well find themselves wondering, not so much whether he deserved the title of 'the Great' as how he ever came to acquire it in the first place. If so, however, they may also like to ask themselves another question: what would have been the fate of the Empire if, at that critical moment in its history after the battle of Adrianople, young Gratian had not called him from his Spanish estates and put the future of the East into his hands? . . . the probability is that the whole Empire of the East would have been lost, swallowed up in a revived Gothic kingdom, with effects on world history that defy speculation.

In his civil legislation he showed, again and again, a consideration for the humblest of his subjects that was rare indeed among rulers of the fourth century. What other prince would have decreed that any criminal, sentenced to execution, imprisonment or exile, must first be allowed thirty days' grace to put his affairs in order? Or that a specified part of his worldly goods must go to his children, upon whom their father's crimes must on no account be visited? Or that no farmer should be obliged to sell his produce to the State at a price lower than he would receive on the open market?

Had he earned his title? Not, perhaps, in the way that Constantine had done or as Justinian was to do. But, if not ultimately great himself, he had surely come very close to greatness; and had he reigned as long as they did his achievements might well have equalled theirs. He might even have saved the Western Empire. One thing only is certain: it would be nearly a century and a half before the Romans would look upon his like again" (Norwich, John Julius. Byzantium, the Early Centuries. London: Penguin Group, 1990. 116-7;118).

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.



Cleisthenes
Theod1GlrMan.jpg
1505c, Theodosius I, 379 - 395 A.D. (Constantinople)78 viewsTheodosius I (379 - 395 AD) AE3. 388-394 AD, RIC IX 27(a)3, Third Officina. Seventh Period. 20.27 mm. 4.8gm. Near VF with black and earthen patina. Constantinople. Obverse: DN THEODO-SIANVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped, & cuirassed bust right; Reverse: GLORIA-ROMANORVM, Theodosius I standing, facing, holding labarum and globe, CONSB in exergue (scarcer reverse). A Spanish find.



De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

THEODOSIUS I (379-395 A.D.)
David Woods
University College of Cork


Origin and Early Career
Flavius Theodosius was born at Cauca in Spain in about 346 to Thermantia and Theodosius the Elder (so-called to distinguish him from his son). Theodosius the Elder was a senior military officer serving in the Western empire and rose to become the magister equitum praesentalis under the emperor Valentinian I from late 368 until his execution in early 375. As the son of a soldier, Theodosius was legally obliged to enter upon a military career. He seems to have served under his father during his expedition to Britain in 367/8, and was the dux Moesiae Primae by late 374. Unfortunately, great controversy surrounds the rest of his career until Gratian had him hailed as his imperial colleague in succession to the emperor Valens at Sirmium on 19 January 379. It is clear that he was forced to retire home to Spain only to be recalled to active service shortly thereafter, but the circumstances of his forced retirement are shrouded in mystery. His father was executed at roughly the same time, and much speculation has centred on the relationship between these events.

[For a very detailed and interesting discussion of the Foreign Policy of Theodosius and the Civil Wars that plagued his reign, please see http://www.roman-emperors.org/theo1.htm]

Family and Succession
Theodosius married twice. His first wife was the Spanish Aelia Flavia Flaccilla. She bore him Arcadius ca. 377, Honorius on 9 September 384, and Pulcheria ca. 385. Theodosius honoured her with the title of Augusta shortly after his accession, but she died in 386. In late 387 he married Galla, daughter of Valentinian I and full-sister of Valentinian II. She bore him Gratian ca. 388, Galla Placidia ca. 388/390, and died in childbirth in 394, together with her new-born son John. Of his two sons who survived infancy, he appointed Arcadius as Augustus on 19 January 383 and Honorius as Augustus on 23 January 393. His promotion of Arcadius as a full Augustus at an unusually young age points to his determination right from the start that one of his own sons should succeed him. He sought to strengthen Arcadius' position in particular by means of a series of strategic marriages whose purpose was to tie his leading "generals" irrevocably to his dynasty. Hence he married his niece and adoptive daughter Serena to his magister militum per Orientem Stilicho in 387, her elder sister Thermantia to a "general" whose name has not been preserved, and ca. 387 his nephew-in-law Nebridius to Salvina, daughter of the comes Africae Gildo. By the time of his death by illness on 17 January 395, Theodosius had promoted Stilicho from his position as one of the two comites domesticorum under his own eastern administration to that of magister peditum praesentalis in a western administration, in an entirely traditional manner, under his younger son Honorius. Although Stilicho managed to increase the power of the magister peditum praesentalis to the disadvantage of his colleague the magister equitum praesentalis and claimed that Theodosius had appointed him as guardian for both his sons, this tells us more about his cunning and ambition than it does about Theodosius' constitutional arrangements.

Theodosius' importance rests on the fact that he founded a dynasty which continued in power until the death of his grandson Theodosius II in 450. This ensured a continuity of policy which saw the emergence of Nicene Christianity as the orthodox belief of the vast majority of Christians throughout the middle ages. It also ensured the essential destruction of paganism and the emergence of Christianity as the religion of the state, even if the individual steps in this process can be difficult to identify. On the negative side, however, he allowed his dynastic interests and ambitions to lead him into two unnecessary and bloody civil wars which severely weakened the empire's ability to defend itself in the face of continued barbarian pressure upon its frontiers. In this manner, he put the interests of his family before those of the wider Roman population and was responsible, in many ways, for the phenomenon to which we now refer as the fall of the western Roman empire.


Copyright (C) 1998, David Woods.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

There is a nice segue here, as we pick-up John Julius Norwich's summation of the reign of Theodosius, "Readers of this brief account of his career may well find themselves wondering, not so much whether he deserved the title of 'the Great' as how he ever came to acquire it in the first place. If so, however, they may also like to ask themselves another question: what would have been the fate of the Empire if, at that critical moment in its history after the battle of Adrianople, young Gratian had not called him from his Spanish estates and put the future of the East into his hands? . . . the probability is that the whole Empire of the East would have been lost, swallowed up in a revived Gothic kingdom, with effects on world history that defy speculation.

In his civil legislation he showed, again and again, a consideration for the humblest of his subjects that was rare indeed among rulers of the fourth century. What other prince would have decreed that any criminal, sentenced to execution, imprisonment or exile, must first be allowed thirty days' grace to put his affairs in order? Or that a specified part of his worldly goods must go to his children, upon whom their father's crimes must on no account be visited? Or that no farmer should be obliged to sell his produce to the State at a price lower than he would receive on the open market?

Had he earned his title? Not, perhaps, in the way that Constantine had done or as Justinian was to do. But, if not ultimately great himself, he had surely come very close to greatness; and had he reigned as long as they did his achievements might well have equalled theirs. He might even have saved the Western Empire. One thing only is certain: it would be nearly a century and a half before the Romans would look upon his like again" (Norwich, John Julius. Byzantium, the Early Centuries. London: Penguin Group, 1990. 116-7;118).

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
Saladin_A788.jpg
1701a, Saladin, 1169-11932043 viewsAYYUBID: Saladin, 1169-1193, AR dirham (2.92g), Halab, AH580, A-788, lovely struck, well-centered & bold, Extremely Fine, Scarce.

His name in Arabic, in full, is SALAH AD-DIN YUSUF IBN AYYUB ("Righteousness of the Faith, Joseph, Son of Job"), also called AL-MALIK AN-NASIR SALAH AD-DIN YUSUF I (b. 1137/38, Tikrit, Mesopotamia--d. March 4, 1193, Damascus), Muslim sultan of Egypt, Syria, Yemen, and Palestine, founder of the Ayyubid dynasty, and the most famous of Muslim heroes.

In wars against the Christian crusaders, he achieved final success with the disciplined capture of Jerusalem (Oct. 2, 1187), ending its 88-year occupation by the Franks. The great Christian counterattack of the Third Crusade was then stalemated by Saladin's military genius.

Saladin was born into a prominent Kurdish family. On the night of his birth, his father, Najm ad-Din Ayyub, gathered his family and moved to Aleppo, there entering the service of 'Imad ad-Din Zangi ibn Aq Sonqur, the powerful Turkish governor in northern Syria. Growing up in Ba'lbek and Damascus, Saladin was apparently an undistinguished youth, with a greater taste for religious studies than military training.
His formal career began when he joined the staff of his uncle Asad ad-Din Shirkuh, an important military commander under the amir Nureddin, son and successor of Zangi. During three military expeditions led by Shirkuh into Egypt to prevent its falling to the Latin-Christian (Frankish) rulers of the states established by the First Crusade, a complex, three-way struggle developed between Amalric I, the Latin king of Jerusalem, Shawar, the powerful vizier of the Egyptian Fatimid caliph, and Shirkuh. After Shirkuh's death and after ordering Shawar's assassination, Saladin, in 1169 at the age of 31, was appointed both commander of the Syrian troops and vizier of Egypt.

His relatively quick rise to power must be attributed not only to the clannish nepotism of his Kurdish family but also to his own emerging talents. As vizier of Egypt, he received the title king (malik), although he was generally known as the sultan. Saladin's position was further enhanced when, in 1171, he abolished the Shi'i Fatimid caliphate, proclaimed a return to Sunnah in Egypt, and consequently became its sole ruler.

Although he remained for a time theoretically a vassal of Nureddin, that relationship ended with the Syrian emir's death in 1174. Using his rich agricultural possessions in Egypt as a financial base, Saladin soon moved into Syria with a small but strictly disciplined army to claim the regency on behalf of the young son of his former suzerain.
Soon, however, he abandoned this claim, and from 1174 until 1186 he zealously pursued a goal of uniting, under his own standard, all the Muslim territories of Syria, northern Mesopotamia, Palestine, and Egypt.

This he accomplished by skillful diplomacy backed when necessary by the swift and resolute use of military force. Gradually, his reputation grew as a generous and virtuous but firm ruler, devoid of pretense, licentiousness, and cruelty. In contrast to the bitter dissension and intense rivalry that had up to then hampered the Muslims in their resistance to the crusaders, Saladin's singleness of purpose induced them to rearm both physically and spiritually.

Saladin's every act was inspired by an intense and unwavering devotion to the idea of jihad ("holy war")-the Muslim equivalent of the Christian crusade. It was an essential part of his policy to encourage the growth and spread of Muslim religious institutions.

He courted its scholars and preachers, founded colleges and mosques for their use, and commissioned them to write edifying works especially on the jihad itself. Through moral regeneration, which was a genuine part of his own way of life, he tried to re-create in his own realm some of the same zeal and enthusiasm that had proved so valuable to the first generations of Muslims when, five centuries before, they had conquered half the known world.

Saladin also succeeded in turning the military balance of power in his favour-more by uniting and disciplining a great number of unruly forces than by employing new or improved military techniques. When at last, in 1187, he was able to throw his full strength into the struggle with the Latin crusader kingdoms, his armies were their equals. On July 4, 1187, aided by his own military good sense and by a phenomenal lack of it on the part of his enemy, Saladin trapped and destroyed in one blow an exhausted and thirst-crazed army of crusaders at Hattin, near Tiberias in northern Palestine.

So great were the losses in the ranks of the crusaders in this one battle that the Muslims were quickly able to overrun nearly the entire Kingdom of Jerusalem. Acre, Toron, Beirut, Sidon, Nazareth, Caesarea, Nabulus, Jaffa (Yafo), and Ascalon (Ashqelon) fell within three months.

But Saladin's crowning achievement and the most disastrous blow to the whole crusading movement came on Oct. 2, 1187, when Jerusalem, holy to both Muslim and Christian alike, surrendered to the Sultan's army after 88 years in the hands of the Franks. In stark contrast to the city's conquest by the Christians, when blood flowed freely during the barbaric slaughter of its inhabitants, the Muslim reconquest was marked by the civilized and courteous behaviour of Saladin and his troops. His sudden success, which in 1189 saw the crusaders reduced to the occupation of only three cities, was, however, marred by his failure to capture Tyre, an almost impregnable coastal fortress to which the scattered Christian survivors of the recent battles flocked. It was to be the rallying point of the Latin counterattack.

Most probably, Saladin did not anticipate the European reaction to his capture of Jerusalem, an event that deeply shocked the West and to which it responded with a new call for a crusade. In addition to many great nobles and famous knights, this crusade, the third, brought the kings of three countries into the struggle.

The magnitude of the Christian effort and the lasting impression it made on contemporaries gave the name of Saladin, as their gallant and chivalrous enemy, an added lustre that his military victories alone could never confer on him.

The Crusade itself was long and exhausting, and, despite the obvious, though at times impulsive, military genius of Richard I the Lion-Heart, it achieved almost nothing. Therein lies the greatest-but often unrecognized--achievement of Saladin. With tired and unwilling feudal levies, committed to fight only a limited season each year, his indomitable will enabled him to fight the greatest champions of Christendom to a draw. The crusaders retained little more than a precarious foothold on the Levantine coast, and when King Richard set sail from the Orient in October 1192, the battle was over.

Saladin withdrew to his capital at Damascus. Soon, the long campaigning seasons and the endless hours in the saddle caught up with him, and he died. While his relatives were already scrambling for pieces of the empire, his friends found that the most powerful and most generous ruler in the Muslim world had not left enough money to pay for his own grave.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
H.A.R. Gibb, "The Arabic Sources for the Life of Saladin," Speculum, 25:58-72 (1950). C.W. Wilson's English translation of one of the most important Arabic works, The Life of Saladin (1897), was reprinted in 1971. The best biography to date is Stanley Lane-Poole, Saladin and the Fall of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, new ed. (1926, reprinted 1964), although it does not take account of all the sources.
See: http://stp.ling.uu.se/~kamalk/language/saladin.html
Ed. J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
1 commentsCleisthenes
GallienusAntVirtus.jpg
1cy Gallienus16 views253-268

Bronze antoninianus

Radiate, draped bust, right, GALLINVS AVG
Mars standing left, holding globe in right hand and spear in left hand, P in right field, VIRTVS AVG

RIC 317

Gallienus oversaw a period of disintegration of the empire and lost control over the East, Gaul, Spain, and Britain.

Zosimus observed: [When Valerian left for the East] As the Germans were the most troublesome enemies, and harrassed the Gauls in the vicinity of the Rhine, Gallienus marched against them in person, leaving his officers to repel with the forces under their command any others that should enter Italy, Illyricum, and Greece. With these designs, he possessed himself of and defended the passages of the Rhine, at one time preventing their crossing, and at another engaging them as soon as they had crossed it. But having only a small force to resist an immense number, he was at a loss how to act, and thought to secure himself by a league with one of the German princes. He thus not only prevented the other Barbarians from so frequently passing the Rhine, but obstructed the access of auxiliaries.

Eutropius recorded: Gallienus, who was made emperor when quite a young man, exercised his power at first happily, afterwards fairly, and at last mischievously. In his youth he performed many gallant acts in Gaul and Illyricum, killing Ingenuus, who had assumed the purple, at Mursa, and Regalianus. He was then for a long time quiet and gentle; afterwards, abandoning himself to all manner of licentiousness, he relaxed the reins of government with disgraceful inactivity and carelesness. The Alemanni, having laid waste Gaul, penetrated into Italy. Dacia, which had been added to the empire beyond the Danube, was lost. Greece, Macedonia, Pontus, Asia, were devastated by the Goths. Pannonia was depopulated by the Sarmatians and Quadi. The Germans made their way as far as Spain, and took the noble city of Tarraco. The Parthians, after taking possession of Mesopotamia, began to bring Syria under their power.

Zosimus resumes: Gallienus in the mean time still continued beyond the Alps, intent on the German war, while the Senate, seeing Rome in such imminent danger, armed all the soldiers that were in the city, and the strongest of the common people, and formed an army, which exceeded the Barbarians in number. This so alarmed the Barbarians, that they left Rome, but ravaged all the rest of Italy. At this period, when Illyricum groaned under the oppression of the Barbarians, and the whole Roman empire was in such a helpless state as to be on the very verge of ruin, a plague happened to break out in several of the towns, more dreadful than any that had preceded it. The miseries inflicted on them by the Barbarians were thus alleviated, even the sick esteeming themselves fortunate. The cities that had been taken by the Scythians were thus deserted.

Gallienus, being disturbed by these occurrences, was returning to Rome to relieve Italy from the war which the Scythians were thus carrying on. It was at this time, that Cecrops, a Moor, Aureolus and Antoninus, with many others, conspired against him, of whom the greater part were punished and submitted. Aureolus alone retained his animosity against the emperor.

The Scythians, who had dreadfully afflicted the whole of Greece, had now taken Athens, when Gallienus advanced against those who were already in possession of Thrace, and ordered Odonathus of Palmyra, a person whose ancestors had always been highly respected by the emperors, to assist the eastern nations which were then in a very distressed condition. . . .

While affairs were thus situated in the east, intelligence was brought to Gallienus, who was then occupied in the Scythian war, that Aurelianus, or Aureolus, who was commander of the cavalry posted in the neighbourhood of Milan to watch the motions of Posthumus, had formed some new design, and was ambitious to be emperor. Being alarmed at this he went immediately to Italy, leaving the command against the Scythians with Marcianus, a person of great experience in military affairs. . . . Gallienus, in his journey towards Italy, had a plot formed against him by Heraclianus, prefect of the court, who communicated his design to Claudius, in whom the chief management of affairs was vested. The design was to murder Gallienus. Having found a man very ready for such an undertaking, who commanded a troop of Dalmatians, he entrusted the action to him. To effect it, the party stood by Gallienus at supper and informed him that some of the spies had brought intelligence, that Aureolus and his army were close at hand. By this they considerably alarmed him. Calling immediately for his horse and arms, he mounted, ordering his men to follow him in their armour, and rode away without any attendance. Thus the captain finding him alone killed him.
Blindado
ValentinianIIAE3UrbsRom.jpg
1et Valentinian II19 views373-392

AE3, Nicomedia

Pearl-diademed, draped & cuirassed bust rightt, D N VALENTINIANVS IVN P F AVG
Roma seated on cuirass, holding spear and Victory on globe, VRBS ROMA

The SMN mintmark indicates that the coin was minted in Nicomedia, but RIC does not list this reverse type for that mint.

Sim to RIC 51

Zosimus reports: Valentinian being dead, the tribunes Merobaudes and Equitius, reflecting on the distance at which Valens and Gratian resided, the former being in the east, and the latter left by his father in the western part of Gaul, were apprehensive lest the Barbarians beyond the Ister should make an effort while the country was without a ruler. They therefore sent for the younger son of Valentinian, who was born of his wife the widow of Magnentius, who was not far from thence with the child. Having clothed him in purple, they brought him into the court, though scarcely five years old. The empire was afterwards divided between Gratian and the younger Valentinian, at the discretion of their guardians, they not being of age to manage their own affairs. The Celtic nations, Spain, and Britain were given to Gratian; and Italy, Illyricum, and Africa to Valentinian. . . .

Affairs being thus situated in the east, in Thrace, and in Illyricum, Maximus, who deemed his appointments inferior to his merits, being only governor of the countries formerly under Gratian, projected how to depose the young Valentinian from the empire, if possible totally, but should he fail in the whole, to secure at least some part. . . . he immediately entered Italy without; resistance, and marched to Aquileia. . . . This so much surprised Valentinian, and rendered his situation so desperate, that his courtiers were alarmed lest he should be taken by Maximus and put to death. He, therefore, immediately embarked,and sailed to Thessalonica with his mother Justina, who, as I before mentioned, had been the wife of Magnentius, but after his decease was taken in marriage by the emperor Valentinian on account of her extraordinary beauty. She carried along with her her daughter Galla. After having passed many seas, and arriving at Thessalonica, they sent messengers to the emperor Theodosius, intreating him now at least to revenge the injuries committed against the family of Valentinian. He was astonished at hearing of this, and began to forget his extravagance, and to lay some restraint on his wild inclination for pleasure. . . . Theodosius then delivered to Valentinian as much of the empire as his father had possessed; in which he only acted as he was enjoined by his duty to those who so merited his kindness. . . .

intelligence was brought that the emperor Valentianian was no more, and that his death happened in this manner: Arbogastes, a Frank, who was appointed by the emperor Gratian lieutenant to Baudo, at the death of Baudo, confiding in his own ability, assumed the command without the emperor's permission. Being thought proper for the station by all the soldiers under him, both for his valour and experience in military affairs, and for his disregard of riches, he attained great influence. He thus became so elevated, that he would speak without reserve to the emperor, and would blame any measure which he thought improper. This gave such umbrage to Valentinian. . . .

Eugenius became the sincere friend of Arbogastes, who had no secret which he did not confide to him. Recollecting Eugenius, therefore, at this juncture, who by his extraordinary learning and the gravity of his conversation seemed well-adapted for the management of an empire, he communicated to him his designs. But finding him not pleased with the proposals, he attempted to prevail on him by all the arts he could use, and entreated him not to reject what fortune so favourably offered. Having at length persuaded him, he deemed it advisable in the first place to remove Valentinian, and thus to deliver the sole authority to Eugenius. With this view he proceeded to Vienna, a town in Gaul, where the emperor resided; and as he was amusing himself near the town in some sports with the soldiers, apprehending no danger, Arbogastes gave him a mortal wound.
Blindado
EugeniusSiliquaRoma.jpg
1ex Eugenius26 views392-394

AR siliqua

Bearded, pearl diademed, draped, cuirassed bust rightt, DN EVGENIVS PF AVG
Roma seated left on cuirass, MDPS below, VIRTVS ROMANORVM

RIC 32c

Zosimus reports: Eugenius became the sincere friend of Arbogastes, who had no secret which he did not confide to him. Recollecting Eugenius, therefore, at this juncture, who by his extraordinary learning and the gravity of his conversation seemed well-adapted for the management of an empire, he communicated to him his designs. But finding him not pleased with the proposals, he attempted to prevail on him by all the arts he could use, and entreated him not to reject what fortune so favourably offered. Having at length persuaded him, he deemed it advisable in the first place to remove Valentinian, and thus to deliver the sole authority to Eugenius. With this view he proceeded to Vienna, a town in Gaul, where the emperor resided; and as he was amusing himself near the town in some sports with the soldiers, apprehending no danger, Arbogastes gave him a mortal wound. To this audacious action the soldiers quietly submitted, not only because he was so brave and warlike a person, but because they were attached to him through his contempt of riches. As soon as he had performed this action, he declared Eugenius emperor, and infused into them the most favourable hopes that he would prove an excellent ruler, since he possessed such extraordinary qualifications. . . .

[Theodosius marched against Eugenius.] The emperor (having mourned for [his just deceased wife] a whole day, according to the rule of Homer), proceeded with his army to the war, leaving behind him his son Arcadius, who had some time previously been made emperor. This prince being young, his father, in order to amend the defects of his nonage, left with him Rufinus, who was prefect of the court, and acted as he pleased, even as much as the power of sovereignty enabled the emperor himself to do. Having done this, he took with him his younger son Honorius, quickly passed through the intermediate countries, and having exceded his expectations in crossing the Alps, arrived where the enemy was stationed : Eugenius being astonished at seeing him there whom he so little expected. But as he was arrived there, and consequently was under the necessity of engaging, he judged it most prudent to place the Barbarian troops in front, and to expose them first. He ordered Gaines with the troops under his command to make the first attack, and the other commanders of Barbarian soldiers to follow him, either cavalry, horse archers, or infantry. Eugenius then drew out his forces. When the two armies were engaged, so great an eclipse of the sun happened, that for more than half the time of the action it appeared rather to be night than day. As they fought therefore a kind of nocturnal battle, so great a slaughtor was made, that in the same day the greater part of the allies of Theodosius were slain, with their commander Bacurius, who fought very courageously at their head, while the other commanders escaped very narrowly with the remainder. When night came on and the armies had rallied, Eugenius was so elated with his victory, that he distributed money among those who had behaved with the greatest gallantry in the battle, and gave them time to refresh themselves, as if after such a defeat there was no probability of another engagement As they were thus solacing themselves, the emperor Theodosius about break of day fell suddenly on them with his whole forces, while they were still reclined |129 on the ground, and killed them before they knew of the approach of an enemy. He then proceeded to the tent of Eugenius, where he attacked those who were around him, killing many of them, and taking some of them in their flight, among whom was Eugenius. When they had got him in their power, they cut off his head, and carried it on a long spear around the camp, in order to shew those who still adhered to him, that it was now their interest to be reconciled to the emperor, inasmuch as the usurper was removed.
Blindado
coin242.JPG
306. Trebonianus Gallus28 viewsGaius Vibius Trebonianus Gallus (206 - August, 253), was Roman emperor from 251 to 253, in a joint rule with his son Volusianus.

Gallus was born in Italy, in a family with respected ancestry and a senatorial background. He had two children in his marriage with Afinia Gemina Baebiana: the future emperor Gaius Vibius Volusianus and a daughter, Vibia Galla. His early career was typical with several appointments, both political and military. He was suffect consul and in 250 was nominated governor of the Roman province of Moesia Superior, an appointment that showed the confidence of emperor Trajan Decius in him. In Moesia, Gallus was a key figure in repelling the frequent invasion attacks by the Gothic tribes of the Danube and became popular with the army.

On July 1, 251, Decius and his co-emperor and son Herennius Etruscus died in the battle of Abrittus, at the hands of the Goths they were supposed to punish for raids into the empire. When the army heard the news, the soldiers proclaimed Gallus emperor, despite Hostilian, Decius' surviving son, ascending the imperial throne in Rome. Gallus did not back down from his intention to became emperor, but accepted Hostilian as co-emperor, perhaps to avoid the damage of another civil war. While Gallus marched on Rome, an outbreak of plague struck the city and killed the young Hostilian. With absolute power now on his hands, Gallus nominated his son Volusianus co-emperor.

Eager to show himself competent and gain popularity with the citizens, Gallus swiftly dealt with the epidemic, providing burial for the victims. Gallus is often accused of persecuting the Christians, but the only solid evidence of this allegation is the imprisoning of Pope Cornelius in 252.

Like his predecessors, Gallus did not have an easy reign. In the East, king Shapur I of Persia invaded and conquered the province of Syria, without any response from Rome. On the Danube, the Gothic tribes were once again on the loose, despite the peace treaty signed in 251. The army was not pleased with the emperor and when Aemilianus, governor of Moesia Superior and Pannonia, took the initiative of battle and defeated the Goths, the soldiers proclaimed him emperor. With a usurper threatening the throne, Gallus prepared for a fight. He recalled several legions and ordered reinforcements to return to Rome from the Rhine frontier. Despite these dispositions, Aemilianus marched onto Italy ready to fight for his claim. Gallus did not have the chance to face him in battle: he and Volusianus were murdered by their own troops in August 253.
ecoli
0001SOS.jpg
4) Antony: Sosius49 viewsGAIUS SOSIUS
General to Antony
26mm (14.5 g). ~ 38 BC.
Cilicia, Uncertain Mint.

Bare head right / Fiscus, sella, quaestoria and hasta; Q below.

Coin has been attributed to multiple rulers, including Julius Caesar, Augustus and Brutus. Now believed to be Sosius, General to Antony and Governor of Syria.

RPC I 5409; Laffaille 324; Grant, FITA, pg. 13. aFine, brown patina, scratches. Rare.
0001SOS


Sosius was wily and accomplished man. A talented general, he received a triumph. However, he consistently picked the wrong side in Rome's Civil Wars (Senate vs. Caesar, then Antony vs. Octavian) yet somehow managed to keep his head.

According to Wikipedia:

Gaius Sosius was a Roman general and politician.

Gaius Sosius was elected quaestor in 66 BC and praetor in 49 BC. Upon the start of the civil war, he joined the party of the Senate and Pompey. Upon the flight of Pompey to Greece, Sosius returned to Rome and submitted to Julius Caesar.

After the assassination of Caesar, Sosius joined the party of Mark Antony, by whom in 38 BC he was appointed governor of Syria and Cilicia in the place of Publius Ventidius. As governor, Sosius was commanded by Antony to support Herod against Antigonus the Hasmonean, when the latter was in possession of Jerusalem. In 37 BC, he advanced against Jerusalem and after he became master of the city, Sosius placed Herod upon the throne. In return for this services, he was awarded a triumph in 34 BC, and he became consul along with Gnaeus Domitius Ahenobarbus as his colleague in 32 BC.

When civil war broke out between Antony and Octavian, Sosius espoused the cause of Antony and violently attacked Octavian in the senate, for which he was forced to flee to the east. In 31 BC, Sosius commanded a squadron in Mark Antony's fleet with which he managed to defeat the squadron of Taurius Rufus according to Dio 50.14 and put it to flight, but when the latter was reinforced by Marcus Agrippa, Sosius's ally Tarcondimotus the king of Cilicia was killed and Sosius himself was forced to flee. At Actium, Sosius commanded the left wing of Antony's fleet. After the battle, from which he managed to escape, his hiding place was detected and Sosius was captured and brought before Octavian but, at the intercession of Lucius Arruntius, Octavian pardoned him. He returned to Rome and completed his building project on the temple of Apollo Medicus (begun in 34 BC), dedicating it in Octavian's name.

Unknown sons, but two daughters : Sosia and Sosia Galla, possibly by an Asinia,[1] a Nonia or an Aelia. However the name reappears with Q. Sosius Senecio, (consul in 99 and 107).[2] and Saint Sosius (275-305 AD).

Sosius attended the Ludi Saeculares in 17 according to an inscription CIL 6.32323 = ILS 5050 as a quindecimvir.
RM0002
4 commentsSosius
coin278.JPG
505. Constantius Gallus51 viewsFlavius Claudius Constantius Gallus (c. 325/326 - 354), better known as Gallus Caesar, was a member of the Constantinian dynasty and Caesar of the Eastern Roman Empire (351-354). Gallus was consul three years, from 352 to 354.

Son of Julius Constantius by his first wife Galla, Gallus' paternal grandparents were Western Roman Emperor Constantius Chlorus and his second wife Flavia Maximiana Theodora. Julius Constantius was also a half-brother of Roman Emperor Constantine I, and thus Gallus was a first cousin of Roman Emperors Constantine II, Constantius II and Constans.

Born in Massa Veternensis, Italia, young Gallus saw his father killed by order of his cousin Constantius II.

Gallus became Caesar of the East on March 15 351, added the name of Constantius to his own, and set up residence in Antioch. In order to create a loyality bond with his Caesar, Constantius gave him his elder sister Constantina as wife. Gallus ruled the city in such a severe way that people complained to Constantius, who had him arrested. On the way to his summons he was executed.

His youger half-brother Julian became later Emperor.

Constantius Gallus. 351-354 AD. DN CONSTANTIVS IVN NOB C, bare head bust right, draped & cuirassed / FEL TEMP REPARATIO, soldier spearing fallen horseman, ASIS in ex. RIC 351
2 commentsecoli
coin402.JPG
516a Johannes42 viewsAfter the death of Honorius on August 15, 423, his closest male relative was Valentinian, son of Galla Placidia. Valentinian was currently at Constantinople. This power vacuum allowed Ioannes, the primicerius notariorum (chief notary) to seize power in the west. Virtually nothing is known of Ioannes himself, though he was said to have had a mild character. He was supported by the magister militum Castinus and by Aetius, son of the magister militum Gaudentius. After his acclamation at Rome, Ioannes transferred his capital to Ravenna. Ioannes' rule was accepted in Gaul, Spain and Italy, but not in Africa. Ioannes' attempts to negotiate with the eastern emperor Theodosius II were unsuccessful. He seems not to have had a firm grasp of power and this encouraged eastern intervention. In 425, Theodosius II sent an expedition under the command of Ardabur the Elder to install Valentinian as emperor in the west. Ardabur was captured, but treated well, as Ioannes still hoped to be able to negotiate with Theodosius. Ardabur, however, persuaded some of Ioannes' officials to betray him. After his capture, Ioannes was taken to Aquileia where he was mutilated, then executed. Three days after Ioannes's execution, one of his generals, Aetius, arrived in Italy with a large force of Huns. Rather than continue the war, Valentinian bought off the Huns with gold and Aetius with the office of comes.
1 commentsecoli
ArsakesII.jpg
Arsakes II65 viewsAR Drachm (16mm, 4.09 g, 12h). Rhagai-Arsakeia(?) mint. Struck circa 211-209 BC. Head left, wearing bashlyk and earring / Archer (Arsakes I) seated right on throne, holding bow; to right, eagle standing facing, head left, with wings displayed; APΣAKY downward to left. Sellwood 6.1; A&S Type 6, obv. 6/1, rev. 6/2; Shore 4; Sunrise 241-3.

Arsakes II, son of Arsakes I, ascended the Parthian throne about 210 BC. At roughly the same time, the Seleukid king Antiochos III (223-187 BC) marched out of Ecbatana to recover the eastern Seleukid provinces that were lost to the young Parthian kingdom. Justin (41.5.7) comments that Arsakes II fought with admirable gallantry against Antiochos, and finally became his ally. Whether the Parthians resumed minting after the return of Antiochos returned to Ekbatana in 205 BC, after his Baktrian expedition, cannot be ascertained. It is possible that, until his defeat by the Romans at the Battle of Magnesia in 190/189 BC, Antiochos held sway over Iran at least as far east as the Baktrian frontiers and thus suppressed the circulation of non-Seleukid currencies. Unfortunately, the exact date and circumstances of the death of Arsakes II are unknown. The superb condition of the great majority of S6 drachms of Arsakes II implies that they were minted and almost immediately interred at around the time of Antiochos IIIs eastern expedition to Parthia and Baktria in 209 BC (from CNG).
3 commentsThatParthianGuy
022.JPG
Carmo (Seville) Hispania Ulterior Early 1st Century BC Bronze As 15 viewsBronze as, Villaronga 24, SNG BM Spain 1588 ff., Burgos 459, F, 16.2g, 25mm,
Carmo (Seville) mint, male head right; reverse CARMO, legend between two heads of grain ; scarce!!!
Hispania is the Latin term given to the Iberian peninsula. Hispania Ulterior (Further Hispania) was a region of Hispania during the Roman Republic, roughly located in Baetica and in the Guadalquivir valley of modern Spain and extending to all of Lusitania (modern Portugal, Extremadura and a small part of Salamanca province) and Gallaecia (modern Northern Portugal and Galicia). Its capital was Corduba.
Antonivs Protti
MISC_Ancona_grosso_Biaggi_34.jpg
Italian States: Ancona. Republic1 viewsBiaggi 34; CNI v. VIII, pp. 3-4, nos. 19-31, plate I/4-5

AR Grosso, struck ca. 13th-14th Century; 2.19 g., 21.77 mm. max.; 270

Obv: + (star) DE ANCONA (star), cross patte.

Rev: PP S QVI (star) (trefoil) RI ACVS (rosette) , St. Judas Cyriacus (Quiriacus) standing facing, holding crozier and raising hand in benediction.

The reverse legend refers to Saint Judas Cyriacus (Quiriacus), patron Saint of Ancona. Local tradition claims that Cyriacus/Quiriacus was a Jew of Jerusalem who had a fateful meeting with the Roman empress Helena, mother of Constantine the Great, around 327 A.D. Helena was on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem when she encountered Cyriacus, who revealed to her the location of the True Cross upon which Christ was crucified. After guiding the empress to the holy relic, Cyriacus converted to Christianity and became Bishop of Jerusalem, only to suffer martyrdom years later under Julian the Apostate. The city of Ancona is said to have received his relics, minus his head, under empress Galla Placidia, around the middle of the fifth Century (his head is in the town of Provins, France, where it was brought from Jerusalem during the crusades). He has been the citys patron Saint ever since.

During this period Ancona was an oligarchic republic, ruled by six elected Elders. In 1348, after the city was weakened by the black death and a fire, the Malatesta family took control.
Stkp
21320341.jpg
Italy, Ravenna, Mausoleum of Galla Placidia64 viewsit is describbed as "the earliest and best preserved of all mosaic monuments, and at the same time one of the most artistically perfect"

The building was formerly the oratory of the Church of the Holy Cross and now contains three sarcophagi. The largest sarcophagus was thought to contain the remains of Galla Placidia (died 450). Other is attributed to her husband, Emperor Constantius III. The last sarcophagus is attributed to Galla's son, Emperor Valentinian III, or to her brother, Emperor Honorius.
Johny SYSEL
21320354.jpg
Italy, Ravenna, Mausoleum of Galla Placidia138 viewsit is describbed as "the earliest and best preserved of all mosaic monuments, and at the same time one of the most artistically perfect"

The building was formerly the oratory of the Church of the Holy Cross and now contains three sarcophagi. The largest sarcophagus was thought to contain the remains of Galla Placidia (died 450). Other is attributed to her husband, Emperor Constantius III. The last sarcophagus is attributed to Galla's son, Emperor Valentinian III, or to her brother, Emperor Honorius.
1 commentsJohny SYSEL
21320438.jpg
Italy, Ravenna, Mausoleum of Galla Placidia140 viewsit is describbed as "the earliest and best preserved of all mosaic monuments, and at the same time one of the most artistically perfect"

The building was formerly the oratory of the Church of the Holy Cross and now contains three sarcophagi. The largest sarcophagus was thought to contain the remains of Galla Placidia (died 450). Other is attributed to her husband, Emperor Constantius III. The last sarcophagus is attributed to Galla's son, Emperor Valentinian III, or to her brother, Emperor Honorius.
1 commentsJohny SYSEL
21320330.jpg
Italy, Ravenna, Mausoleum of Galla Placidia62 viewsThe building was formerly the oratory of the Church of the Holy Cross and now contains three sarcophagi. The largest sarcophagus was thought to contain the remains of Galla Placidia (died 450). Other is attributed to her husband, Emperor Constantius III. The last sarcophagus is attributed to Galla's son, Emperor Valentinian III, or to her brother, Emperor Honorius.Johny SYSEL
Middlesex_887.jpg
Middlesex 88783 viewsObv: TREE OF LIBERTY, four men dancing around a pole, surmounted by a head radiated (supposedly the head is that of Prime Minister William Pitt).

Rev: THE GALLANT GARB OF SCOTLAND, a Scottish Highlander standing.

Edge: SPENCE X DEALER X IN X COINS X LONDON X

Thomas Spence, Halfpenny Conder token

Dalton & Hamer: Middlesex 887
SPQR Coins
Nero_Galatian_Temple~0.JPG
Nero Gallatian Temple20 viewsDiameter: 21.2 mm, Weight: 5.6 gr
RPC 3563 Nero AE23 of the Koinon of Galatia.
OBV: NEPWNOS SEBASTOY, laureate head left
REV: TO KOINON GALATWN, tetrastyle temple with peaked root, caduceus (?) at the apex.
54 - 68 AD (Struck 62 - 65 AD)

Ancient Galatia was an area in the highlands of central Anatolia in modern Turkey. Galatia, an ancient region of Asia Minor, was named for the immigrant Gauls from Thrace (cf. Tylis), who settled
here and became its ruling caste in the 3rd century BC, following the Gallic invasion of the Balkans in 279 BC. It has been called the "Gallia" of the East, Roman writers calling its inhabitants Galli.

SCARCE
Romanorvm
Saladin (Salah ad-Din Yusuf ibn Ayyub).jpg
Salah ad-Din Yusuf Ibn Ayyub71 viewsHis name in Arabic, in full, is SALAH AD-DIN YUSUF IBN AYYUB ("Righteousness of the Faith, Joseph, Son of Job"), also called AL-MALIK AN-NASIR SALAH AD-DIN YUSUF I (b. 1137/38, Tikrit, Mesopotamia--d. March 4, 1193, Damascus), Muslim sultan of Egypt, Syria, Yemen, and Palestine, founder of the Ayyubid dynasty, and the most famous of Muslim heroes.

In wars against the Christian crusaders, he achieved final success with the disciplined capture of Jerusalem (Oct. 2, 1187), ending its 88-year occupation by the Franks. The great Christian counterattack of the Third Crusade was then stalemated by Saladin's military genius.

Saladin was born into a prominent Kurdish family. On the night of his birth, his father, Najm ad-Din Ayyub, gathered his family and moved to Aleppo, there entering the service of 'Imad ad-Din Zangi ibn Aq Sonqur, the powerful Turkish governor in northern Syria. Growing up in Ba'lbek and Damascus, Saladin was apparently an undistinguished youth, with a greater taste for religious studies than military training.

His formal career began when he joined the staff of his uncle Asad ad-Din Shirkuh, an important military commander under the amir Nureddin, son and successor of Zangi. During three military expeditions led by Shirkuh into Egypt to prevent its falling to the Latin-Christian (Frankish) rulers of the states established by the First Crusade, a complex, three-way struggle developed between Amalric I, the Latin king of Jerusalem, Shawar, the powerful vizier of the Egyptian Fatimid caliph, and Shirkuh. After Shirkuh's death and after ordering Shawar's assassination, Saladin, in 1169 at the age of 31, was appointed both commander of the Syrian troops and vizier of Egypt.

His relatively quick rise to power must be attributed not only to the clannish nepotism of his Kurdish family but also to his own emerging talents. As vizier of Egypt, he received the title king (malik), although he was generally known as the sultan. Saladin's position was further enhanced when, in 1171, he abolished the Shi'i Fatimid caliphate, proclaimed a return to Sunnah in Egypt, and consequently became its sole ruler.

Although he remained for a time theoretically a vassal of Nureddin, that relationship ended with the Syrian emir's death in 1174. Using his rich agricultural possessions in Egypt as a financial base, Saladin soon moved into Syria with a small but strictly disciplined army to claim the regency on behalf of the young son of his former suzerain.
Soon, however, he abandoned this claim, and from 1174 until 1186 he zealously pursued a goal of uniting, under his own standard, all the Muslim territories of Syria, northern Mesopotamia, Palestine, and Egypt.

This he accomplished by skillful diplomacy backed when necessary by the swift and resolute use of military force. Gradually, his reputation grew as a generous and virtuous but firm ruler, devoid of pretense, licentiousness, and cruelty. In contrast to the bitter dissension and intense rivalry that had up to then hampered the Muslims in their resistance to the crusaders, Saladin's singleness of purpose induced them to rearm both physically and spiritually.

Saladin's every act was inspired by an intense and unwavering devotion to the idea of jihad ("holy war")-the Muslim equivalent of the Christian crusade. It was an essential part of his policy to encourage the growth and spread of Muslim religious institutions.

He courted its scholars and preachers, founded colleges and mosques for their use, and commissioned them to write edifying works especially on the jihad itself. Through moral regeneration, which was a genuine part of his own way of life, he tried to re-create in his own realm some of the same zeal and enthusiasm that had proved so valuable to the first generations of Muslims when, five centuries before, they had conquered half the known world.

Saladin also succeeded in turning the military balance of power in his favour-more by uniting and disciplining a great number of unruly forces than by employing new or improved military techniques. When at last, in 1187, he was able to throw his full strength into the struggle with the Latin crusader kingdoms, his armies were their equals. On July 4, 1187, aided by his own military good sense and by a phenomenal lack of it on the part of his enemy, Saladin trapped and destroyed in one blow an exhausted and thirst-crazed army of crusaders at Hattin, near Tiberias in northern Palestine.

So great were the losses in the ranks of the crusaders in this one battle that the Muslims were quickly able to overrun nearly the entire Kingdom of Jerusalem. Acre, Toron, Beirut, Sidon, Nazareth, Caesarea, Nabulus, Jaffa (Yafo), and Ascalon (Ashqelon) fell within three months.

But Saladin's crowning achievement and the most disastrous blow to the whole crusading movement came on Oct. 2, 1187, when Jerusalem, holy to both Muslim and Christian alike, surrendered to the Sultan's army after 88 years in the hands of the Franks. In stark contrast to the city's conquest by the Christians, when blood flowed freely during the barbaric slaughter of its inhabitants, the Muslim reconquest was marked by the civilized and courteous behaviour of Saladin and his troops. His sudden success, which in 1189 saw the crusaders reduced to the occupation of only three cities, was, however, marred by his failure to capture Tyre, an almost impregnable coastal fortress to which the scattered Christian survivors of the recent battles flocked. It was to be the rallying point of the Latin counterattack.

Most probably, Saladin did not anticipate the European reaction to his capture of Jerusalem, an event that deeply shocked the West and to which it responded with a new call for a crusade. In addition to many great nobles and famous knights, this crusade, the third, brought the kings of three countries into the struggle.

The magnitude of the Christian effort and the lasting impression it made on contemporaries gave the name of Saladin, as their gallant and chivalrous enemy, an added lustre that his military victories alone could never confer on him.

The Crusade itself was long and exhausting, and, despite the obvious, though at times impulsive, military genius of Richard I the Lion-Heart, it achieved almost nothing. Therein lies the greatest-but often unrecognized--achievement of Saladin. With tired and unwilling feudal levies, committed to fight only a limited season each year, his indomitable will enabled him to fight the greatest champions of Christendom to a draw. The crusaders retained little more than a precarious foothold on the Levantine coast, and when King Richard set sail from the Orient in October 1192, the battle was over.

Saladin withdrew to his capital at Damascus. Soon, the long campaigning seasons and the endless hours in the saddle caught up with him, and he died. While his relatives were already scrambling for pieces of the empire, his friends found that the most powerful and most generous ruler in the Muslim world had not left enough money to pay for his own grave.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
H.A.R. Gibb, "The Arabic Sources for the Life of Saladin," Speculum, 25:58-72 (1950). C.W. Wilson's English translation of one of the most important Arabic works, The Life of Saladin (1897), was reprinted in 1971. The best biography to date is Stanley Lane-Poole, Saladin and the Fall of the Kingdom of Jerusalem, new ed. (1926, reprinted 1964), although it does not take account of all the sources.
See: http://stp.ling.uu.se/~kamalk/language/saladin.html

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
Sicily_Syracuse_SNG-ANS5_370_gf.jpg
Syracuse, Second Democracy & Dionysios I. 21 viewsSicily, Syracuse, Second Democracy & Dionysios I. 400-390 BC. AR Dekadrachm (42.64 gm). Fast quadriga driven l., crowned by Nike flying r. above; ex: panoply of armor, spear behind. / Head of Arethusa l., hair wreathed; four dolphins around, scallop shell behind. [ΣꓦΡΑΚΟΣΙΩΝ]. Unsigned die in the style of Euainetos. Die rust on obverse. nVF/gVF. SNG ANS 5 #370 (same dies); Dewing 907-908 (same dies); Gallatin series F: O.VIII-R.F.I #1-2 (same dies); HGC 2 #1299. cf Triton VII #91. 2 commentsAnaximander
TheodosiusRIC83b.jpg
[1601a] Theodosius I, 19 January 379 - 17 January 395 A.D. 67 viewsBronze AE 2, RIC 83(b), EF, Constantinople mint, 4.389g, 22.1mm, 180o, 25 Aug 383 - 28 Aug 388 A.D.; Obverse: D N THEODO-SIVS P F AVG, pearl-diademed, draped and cuirassed bust right; Reverse: VIRTVS E-XERCITI, Emperor standing right holding standard and globe, foot on captive, cross in left field, CONSA in exergue. Ex FORVM.


De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families

THEODOSIUS I (379-395 A.D.)
David Woods
University College of Cork


Origin and Early Career
Flavius Theodosius was born at Cauca in Spain in about 346 to Thermantia and Theodosius the Elder (so-called to distinguish him from his son). Theodosius the Elder was a senior military officer serving in the Western empire and rose to become the magister equitum praesentalis under the emperor Valentinian I from late 368 until his execution in early 375. As the son of a soldier, Theodosius was legally obliged to enter upon a military career. He seems to have served under his father during his expedition to Britain in 367/8, and was the dux Moesiae Primae by late 374. Unfortunately, great controversy surrounds the rest of his career until Gratian had him hailed as his imperial colleague in succession to the emperor Valens at Sirmium on 19 January 379. It is clear that he was forced to retire home to Spain only to be recalled to active service shortly thereafter, but the circumstances of his forced retirement are shrouded in mystery. His father was executed at roughly the same time, and much speculation has centred on the relationship between these events.

[For a very detailed and interesting discussion of the Foreign Policy of Theodosius and the Civil Wars that plagued his reign, please see http://www.roman-emperors.org/theo1.htm]

Family and Succession
Theodosius married twice. His first wife was the Spanish Aelia Flavia Flaccilla. She bore him Arcadius ca. 377, Honorius on 9 September 384, and Pulcheria ca. 385. Theodosius honoured her with the title of Augusta shortly after his accession, but she died in 386. In late 387 he married Galla, daughter of Valentinian I and full-sister of Valentinian II. She bore him Gratian ca. 388, Galla Placidia ca. 388/390, and died in childbirth in 394, together with her new-born son John. Of his two sons who survived infancy, he appointed Arcadius as Augustus on 19 January 383 and Honorius as Augustus on 23 January 393. His promotion of Arcadius as a full Augustus at an unusually young age points to his determination right from the start that one of his own sons should succeed him. He sought to strengthen Arcadius' position in particular by means of a series of strategic marriages whose purpose was to tie his leading "generals" irrevocably to his dynasty. Hence he married his niece and adoptive daughter Serena to his magister militum per Orientem Stilicho in 387, her elder sister Thermantia to a "general" whose name has not been preserved, and ca. 387 his nephew-in-law Nebridius to Salvina, daughter of the comes Africae Gildo. By the time of his death by illness on 17 January 395, Theodosius had promoted Stilicho from his position as one of the two comites domesticorum under his own eastern administration to that of magister peditum praesentalis in a western administration, in an entirely traditional manner, under his younger son Honorius. Although Stilicho managed to increase the power of the magister peditum praesentalis to the disadvantage of his colleague the magister equitum praesentalis and claimed that Theodosius had appointed him as guardian for both his sons, this tells us more about his cunning and ambition than it does about Theodosius' constitutional arrangements.

Theodosius' importance rests on the fact that he founded a dynasty which continued in power until the death of his grandson Theodosius II in 450. This ensured a continuity of policy which saw the emergence of Nicene Christianity as the orthodox belief of the vast majority of Christians throughout the middle ages. It also ensured the essential destruction of paganism and the emergence of Christianity as the religion of the state, even if the individual steps in this process can be difficult to identify. On the negative side, however, he allowed his dynastic interests and ambitions to lead him into two unnecessary and bloody civil wars which severely weakened the empire's ability to defend itself in the face of continued barbarian pressure upon its frontiers. In this manner, he put the interests of his family before those of the wider Roman population and was responsible, in many ways, for the phenomenon to which we now refer as the fall of the western Roman empire.


Copyright (C) 1998, David Woods.
Published: De Imperatoribus Romanis: An Online Encyclopedia of Roman Rulers and their Families http://www.roman-emperors.org/startup.htm. Used by permission.

There is a nice segue here, as we pick-up John Julius Norwich's summation of the reign of Theodosius, "Readers of this brief account of his career may well find themselves wondering, not so much whether he deserved the title of 'the Great' as how he ever came to acquire it in the first place. If so, however, they may also like to ask themselves another question: what would have been the fate of the Empire if, at that critical moment in its history after the battle of Adrianople, young Gratian had not called him from his Spanish estates and put the future of the East into his hands? . . . the probability is that the whole Empire of the East would have been lost, swallowed up in a revived Gothic kingdom, with effects on world history that defy speculation.

In his civil legislation he showed, again and again, a consideration for the humblest of his subjects that was rare indeed among rulers of the fourth century. What other prince would have decreed that any criminal, sentenced to execution, imprisonment or exile, must first be allowed thirty days' grace to put his affairs in order? Or that a specified part of his worldly goods must go to his children, upon whom their father's crimes must on no account be visited? Or that no farmer should be obliged to sell his produce to the State at a price lower than he would receive on the open market?

Had he earned his title? Not, perhaps, in the way that Constantine had done or as Justinian was to do. But, if not ultimately great himself, he had surely come very close to greatness; and had he reigned as long as they did his achievements might well have equalled theirs. He might even have saved the Western Empire. One thing only is certain: it would be nearly a century and a half before the Romans would look upon his like again" (Norwich, John Julius. Byzantium, the Early Centuries. London: Penguin Group, 1990. 116-7;118).

Edited by J. P. Fitzgerald, Jr.
Cleisthenes
   
22 files on 1 page(s)