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Maximianus





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MAXIMIANVS.--Two Emperors rejoiced in the common name of Maximianus; and of these Galerius Maximianus was called junior, to distinguish him from the elder by birth, and who in respect to the other was called senior. This distinction, however we do not always see observed in either case. For the coins of Maximianus the elder born, called by the other name of Herculeus, do not all present the name SEN or senior; and it is very seldom that the appellative of IVN or junior is found on the coins of Galerius. For as Herculeus Maximianus alone had hither to borne the title of Augustus, it was the less necessary by the word SENior to distinguish him from Galerius, who was at that time only Caesar. Nor was there any risk of Galerius being confounded with Herculeus Maximianus, because the title of Caesar sufficiently distinguished his coins from those of the elder one, who is said never to have received the dignity of Caesar, but was declared at once Augustus by Diocletian. Hence it is that the title of IVNior is never found conjoined to NOBilissimus CAESar on the medals of Galerius; nor is the prenomen of Galerius by any means common on them, as for example by MAXIMIANVS NOB. CAES. Galerius is indicated, although no mark of the prenomen GAL should be found, the title NOBilissimus CAESar sufficiently distinguishing him from Herculeus. But when Galerius became Augustus, the prenomen of each might be left out, and the title alone of IVNior and of SENior might be placed on their respective medals. And we find this done on their coins which are inscribed--MAXIMIANVS SEN P F AVG. when Valerius Maximianus is indicated, or IMP MAXIMIANVS IVN. P.F. AUG. when Galerius Maximianus intended to be designated.--The following are the observations of the perspicuous and accurate Bimard (in his notes on Jobert), with reference to this point, than which nothing is better calculated completely to remove the difficulty which some learned writers have started thereupon:--"History, both ecclesiastic and profane, teaches us that there were two, and only two Emperors, of the name of Maximianus; one of whom called himself M. Aurelius Valerius Maximianus, and the other C. Galerius Valerius Maximianus. The former was, on the medals struck after his abdication (as Diocletian's colleague), called Maximianus Senior Augustus; the latter to distinguish himself took at the same time the appellation of Maximianus Junior Augustus. It is, however, needful to observe, that Junior is never found except on medals whence we see only the name of Maximianus, and which we have not yet remarked on those which bear the family name of Galerius Maximianus, because then the name of Galerius suffices to distinguish him from Maximianus Aurelius. Nor do we find Maximianus Junior Nobilissimus Caesar, because the quality of Caesar sufficiently distinguished Galerius Maximianus from Maximianus Hercules, who always bore the title of Augustus."--(vol. ii p. 309.)

MAXIMIANVS (Valerius), surnamed Herculeus, on the ground of his pretended descent from Hercules, was born at Sirmium (Sirmich), in Pannonia, in the year of our Lord 250. Entering the army he served with distinction under Aurelian and Probus. It was on account of his valor and military talents, and in spite of his unpolished mind and harsh temper, that he was associated in the empire with the title of Augustus by Diocletian, A.D. 268, having previously been created Caesar by the same emperor.--Maximianus was an outrageous tyrant, covetous, violent, and cruel; an abominable persecutor of Christians, against whom he further instigated his sufficiently prejudiced colleague. He conquered and kept down the Bagaudae, the Persians, and the Germans.--In 292, whilst Diocletian adopted Galerius Maximianus, he on his part conferred the title of Caesar on Constantius Chlorus, and besides adopting the two emperors joined them by the closer bond of relationship. After becoming Augustus, he defeated and dispersed the Mauri of Africa (296).--On the day of Diocletian's abdication (305), Maximianus renounced the empire also, the former retiring to Nicomedia, the latter into Lucania, having named Severus in his place. At the solicitation of his son Maxentius, or as some say for the lust of power, he resumed the quality of Emperor at Rome (307); but driven from that city, he fled (308) into Gaul, and received protection from Constantine, afterwards the Great, who had married his daughter Fausta, and to whom he had given the title of Augustus. Lodged in the palace of Constantine at Arles, he, in the absence of that prince, once more attempted to regain the imperial dignity A.D. 309. But Constantine having retraced his steps back into Gaul, soon compelled Maximianus to make his escape to the city of Marseilles, where he was made prisoner, and for the third time forced to abdicate his pretensions to empire. Having, however, entered into a plot against his son-in-law, he was detected, through the disclosures of his wife, who preferred, in this case, her husband to her father, and Constantine ordered him to be strangled, at Marseilles, in the 60th year of his age, and in the year of Christ 310. He is numismatically styled VAL. MAXIMIANVS NOBilissimus CAES.--IMP. M. AVR. VAL. MAXIMIANVS P.F. AVG.--HERCVLEVS MAXIMIANVS AVG. &c.--The same as in the instance of Diocletian, the medals which give to Maximian the epithets of SENior, BEATISSIMUS, FELICissimus, and the title of Dominus Noster, are posterior to his first abdication, as above noticed. Maximianus the elder boasted of celestial origin; hence on his coins is read HERCVLI DEBELLATORI, with the figure of striking the hydra; then HERCVLI PACIFERO; and also HERCVLI VICTORI. His head not infrequently appears covered with the lion's skin. (See IOVI ET HERCVLI AVGG)--Eutropia, a Syrian woman, was the wife of this Maximianus. His silver medals are rare; his gold still rarer; second and third brass for the most part very common.--See Herculio Maximiano.

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