[44] A new set of tutors – the Homeric scholar Alexander of Cotiaeum along with Trosius Aper and Tuticius Proculus, teachers of Latin[45][note 3] – took over Marcus's education in about 132 or 133. As tribune, he had the right to bring one measure before the senate after the four Antoninus could introduce. Many emperors had planned a joint succession in the past: The biographer relates the scurrilous (and, in the judgment of Anthony Birley, untrue) rumor that Commodus was an illegitimate child born of a union between Faustina and a gladiator. Based on his Stoic beliefs, the work is filled with his notes on life. The hope has become a reality. Before the end of the year, another family coin was issued: it shows only a tiny girl, Domitia Faustina, and one boy baby. [239] At the end of the year, Lucius took the title Armeniacus, despite having never seen combat; Marcus declined to accept the title until the following year. [130] Another son, Tiberius Aelius Antoninus, was born in 152. [49], In late 136, Hadrian almost died from a hemorrhage. [195], Convinced by the prophet Alexander of Abonutichus that he could defeat the Parthians easily and win glory for himself,[196] Severianus led a legion (perhaps the IX Hispana[197]) into Armenia, but was trapped by the great Parthian general Chosrhoes at Elegeia, a town just beyond the Cappadocian frontiers, high up past the headwaters of the Euphrates. Marcus's grandfather owned a palace beside the Lateran, where he would spend much of his childhood. [81] In April 145, Marcus married Faustina, legally his sister, as had been planned since 138. Marcus may have wanted Civica to watch over Lucius, the job Libo had failed at. Marcus Aurelius, however, is … Indeed, at his accession, Marcus transferred part of his mother's estate to his nephew, Ummius Quadratus. [87] This was the age of the Second Sophistic, a renaissance in Greek letters. He believed Marcus was 'beginning to feel the wish to be eloquent once more, in spite of having for a time lost interest in eloquence'. In addition to being a unique Roman leader, Marcus Aurelius was also an accomplished historian and Stoic [191], On his deathbed, Antoninus spoke of nothing but the state and the foreign kings who had wronged him. Best known are their daughter Lucilla and their son Commodus. [249] The Parthians retreated to Nisibis, but this too was besieged and captured. Download the whole book free of charge. If it is not right do not do it; if it is not true do not say it. Like youth and old age. Unfortunately, Faustina died during this trip. [20][21] This branch of the Aurelii based in Roman Spain, the Annii Veri, rose to prominence in Rome in the late 1st century AD. But whether or not Marcus ought to have known this to be so, the rejections of his son's claims in favour of someone else would almost certainly have involved one of the civil wars which were to proliferate so disastrously around future successions. For this reason, Marcus decided not only against bringing more barbarians into Italy, but even banished those who had previously been brought there. [32] His father probably died in 124, when Marcus was three years old during his praetorship. The most important group of sources, the biographies contained in the Historia Augusta, claimed to be written by a group of authors at the turn of the 4th century AD, but it is believed they were in fact written by a single author (referred to here as 'the biographer') from about 395 AD. Fronto felt that, because of Marcus's prominence and public duties, lessons were more important now than they had ever been before. He modified the silver purity of the Roman currency, the denarius. Commodus (/ ˈ k ɒ m ə d ə s /; 31 August 161 – 31 December 192) was Roman emperor jointly with his father Marcus Aurelius from 176 until his father's death in 180, and solely until 192. He ruled for almost two decades till his death in 180 AD. [252], Cassius's army, although suffering from a shortage of supplies and the effects of a plague contracted in Seleucia, made it back to Roman territory safely. [159] The ceremony was perhaps not entirely necessary, given that Marcus's accession had been peaceful and unopposed, but it was good insurance against later military troubles. [244], In 163, the Parthians intervened in Osroene, a Roman client in upper Mesopotamia centred on Edessa, and installed their own king on its throne. [79] Marcus had complained of an illness in an earlier letter: 'As far as my strength is concerned, I am beginning to get it back; and there is no trace of the pain in my chest. [243] Sohaemus was hailed on the imperial coinage of 164 under the legend .mw-parser-output span.smallcaps{font-variant:small-caps}.mw-parser-output span.smallcaps-smaller{font-size:85%}Rex armeniis Datus: Lucius sat on a throne with his staff while Sohaemus stood before him, saluting the emperor. The First Apology of Justin Martyr, Chapter LXVIII. However, the night before the speech, he grew ill and died of a hemorrhage later in the day. Don’t look down on death, but welcome it. [112], Fronto had warned Marcus against the study of philosophy early on: 'It is better never to have touched the teaching of philosophy...than to have tasted it superficially, with the edge of the lips, as the saying is'. Famous Marcus Aurelius quotes on Life, Death and Love: You might be having an idea that Marcus Aurelius, who was none other than the Roman emperor, was born around 121 AD. [132] In 159 and 160, Faustina gave birth to daughters: Fadilla and Cornificia, named respectively after Faustina's and Marcus's dead sisters. III'. After Hadrian's adoptive son, Aelius Caesar, died in 138, the emperor adopted Marcus's uncle Antoninus Pius as his new heir. It drowned many animals, leaving the city in famine. He served as Roman consul in 140, 145, and 161. Marcus consented to Antoninus's proposal. https://www.biography.com/political-figure/marcus-aurelius. It survives as the church of San Lorenzo in Miranda. Fronto was hugely pleased. [147], After Antoninus died in 161, Marcus was effectively sole ruler of the Empire. In modern editions of Fronto's works, it is labeled De bello Parthico (On the Parthian War). He asked Fronto for 'some particularly eloquent reading matter, something of your own, or Cato, or Cicero, or Sallust or Gracchus – or some poet, for I need distraction, especially in this kind of way, by reading something that will uplift and diffuse my pressing anxieties. Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. 'Caesar to Fronto. He had been consul once more than Lucius, he had shared in Antoninus's rule, and he alone was Pontifex Maximus. [148] This may have been a genuine horror imperii, 'fear of imperial power'. At Hadrian's request, Antoninus's daughter Faustina was betrothed to Lucius. If not for his adoption, he probably would have become triumvir monetalis, a highly regarded post involving token administration of the state mint; after that, he could have served as tribune with a legion, becoming the legion's nominal second-in-command. [179], Lucius was less esteemed by Fronto than his brother, as his interests were on a lower level. His training as a Stoic, however, had made the choice clear to him that it was his duty. [207] M. Annius Libo, Marcus's first cousin, was sent to replace the Syrian governor. [118] He was older than Fronto and twenty years older than Marcus. He was there with his wife and children (another child had stayed with Fronto and his wife in Rome). Together they fought the northern enemies of the empire. After his adoptive father died in 161, Aurelius rose to power and was officially then known as Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus. Marcus Aurelius also is known as Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus (Born on April 26, 121, in Rome – Died On March 17, 180, in Vindobona or Sirmio) was emperor of the Roman Empire from the year 161 to the year his death in 180. [105] Marcus pleaded with Fronto, first with 'advice', then as a 'favour', not to attack Atticus; he had already asked Atticus to refrain from making the first blows. The persecution of Christians in the Roman Empire appears to have increased during Marcus's reign, but his involvement in this is unknown. [23][24][note 1], Marcus's mother, Domitia Lucilla Minor (also known as Domitia Calvilla), was the daughter of the Roman patrician P. Calvisius Tullus and inherited a great fortune (described at length in one of Pliny's letters) from her parents and grandparents. [294][295], Christians such as Justin Martyr, Athenagoras, and Eusebius also gave him the title. He had rested, and would rest often, but 'this devotion to duty! [2] The later biographies and the biographies of subordinate emperors and usurpers are unreliable, but the earlier biographies, derived primarily from now-lost earlier sources (Marius Maximus or Ignotus), are much more accurate. Faustina's betrothal to Ceionia's brother Lucius Commodus would also have to be annulled. His father, Marcus Annius Verus III was a politician and a nobleman. The Dacias were still divided in three, governed by a praetorian senator and two procurators. 'The Roman Empire as Known to Han China'. P. Julius Geminius Marcianus, an African senator commanding X Gemina at Vindobona (Vienna), left for Cappadocia with detachments from the Danubian legions. Birley, 'Hadrian to the Antonines', p. 157 n.53. Philostratus describes how even when Marcus was an old man, in the latter part of his reign, he studied under Sextus of Chaeronea: The Emperor Marcus was an eager disciple of Sextus the Boeotian philosopher, being often in his company and frequenting his house. [286], Marcus died at the age of 58 on 17 March 180 due to unknown causes in near military quarters near the city of Sirmium in Pannonia (modern Sremska Mitrovica). [146] His death closed out the longest reign since Augustus, surpassing Tiberius by a couple of months. [158] This donative, however, was twice the size of those past: 20,000 sesterces (5,000 denarii) per capita, with more to officers. [220], Over the winter of 161–162, news that a rebellion was brewing in Syria arrived and it was decided that Lucius should direct the Parthian war in person. Like all great philosophers Marcus Aurelius the noblest of the Emperors of Rome also pondered death. Lucius Verus may have died from the plague in 169. Marcus Aurelius (r. A.D. 161-180) was a Stoic philosopher and one of the five good Roman emperors (r. A.D. 161-180). Around the age of 17, Marcus Aurelius became the son of Antoninus. According to McLaughlin, the disease caused 'irreparable' damage to the Roman maritime trade in the Indian Ocean as proven by the archaeological record spanning from Egypt to India, as well as significantly decreased Roman commercial activity in Southeast Asia. Marcus Aurelius' death is often held to have been the end of the Pax Romana and the beginning of the decline of the Roman Empire. [63] The succession to Antoninus was peaceful and stable: Antoninus kept Hadrian's nominees in office and appeased the senate, respecting its privileges and commuting the death sentences of men charged in Hadrian's last days. It was first published in 1558 in Zurich by Wilhelm Xylander (ne Holzmann), from a manuscript reportedly lost shortly afterwards. Marcus Aurelius on Death and the Cessation of Being. Marcus made some show of resistance: the biographer writes that he was 'compelled' to take imperial power. His son Commodus became emperor and soon ended the northern military efforts. [120] Marcus thanks Rusticus for teaching him 'not to be led astray into enthusiasm for rhetoric, for writing on speculative themes, for discoursing on moralizing texts.... To avoid oratory, poetry, and 'fine writing''.[121]. Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus was born in April 26, 121 AD, to a prominent family. [274] In one speech, Marcus himself reminded the Senate that the imperial palace where he lived was not truly his possession but theirs. As the years passed, he received more responsibilities and official powers, evolving into a strong source of support and counsel for Antoninus. Birley, 'Hadrian to the Antonines', pp. Marcus Aurelius Antoninus (/ɔːˈriːliəs/ ə-REE-lee-əs,[1] Latin: [ˈmaːrkʊs̠ au̯ˈreːlijʊs̠ an̪t̪oːˈniːnʊs̠]; 26 April 121 – 17 March 180 AD) was Roman emperor from 161 to 180 and a Stoic philosopher. Suetonius a possible lover of Sabina: One interpretation of, Lover of Hadrian: Lambert (1984), p. 99 and. [236] He only accompanied the group as far as Brundisium, where they boarded a ship for the east. [80] Never particularly healthy or strong, Marcus was praised by Cassius Dio, writing of his later years, for behaving dutifully in spite of his various illnesses. [51] While his motives are not certain, it would appear that his goal was to eventually place the then-too-young Marcus on the throne. Aurelius even hoped to extend the empire’s borders through this conflict, but Aurelius didn't live long enough to see this vision to completion. Roman emperor from 161 to 180, philosopher, The dissolute Syrian army spent more time in, Marcus Aurelius receiving the submission of the vanquished, with raised. [18], Marcus's paternal family was of Roman Italo-Hispanic origins. Napoleon III, the nephew of Napoleon I, was emperor of France from 1852 to 1870. That same year, 175, Aurelius's general Avidius Cassius was proclaimed Roman emperor after the erroneous news of Marcus's death; the sources indicate Cassius was encouraged by Marcus' wife Faustina, who was concerned about her husband's failing health, believing him to be on the verge of death, and felt the need for Cassius to act as a protector in this event, since her son Commodus, aged … [313] It has been considered by many commentators to be one of the greatest works of philosophy. Ctesiphon was taken and its royal palace set to flame. Crafted of bronze in circa 175, it stands 11.6 ft (3.5 m) and is now located in the Capitoline Museums of Rome. 'When Glass Was Treasured in China'. An assassination ended his reign on the Ides of March. Professional jurists called him 'an emperor most skilled in the law'[271] and 'a most prudent and conscientiously just emperor'. But his greatest intellectual interest was Stoicism, a philosophy that emphasized fate, reason and self-restraint. [190] Marcus had displayed rhetorical skill in his speech to the senate after an earthquake at Cyzicus. [39] Marcus was grateful that he did not have to live with her longer than he did. [237] He returned to Rome immediately thereafter, and sent out special instructions to his proconsuls not to give the group any official reception. The senate would soon grant him the name Augustus and the title imperator, and he would soon be formally elected as Pontifex Maximus, chief priest of the official cults. [275] In 168, he revalued the denarius, increasing the silver purity from 79% to 82% – the actual silver weight increasing from 2.57–2.67 g (0.091–0.094 oz). [56] As part of Hadrian's terms, Antoninus, in turn, adopted Marcus and Lucius Commodus, the son of Lucius Aelius. [254] Cassius's army returned to the field in 166, crossing over the Tigris into Media. The infants were buried in the Mausoleum of Hadrian, where their epitaphs survive. [124] Domitia would die in 151. A spiral of carved reliefs wraps around the column, showing scenes from his military campaigns. Lucius Aurelius Commodus was born to the philosopher/king and Faustina the Younger at Lanuvium, a city fourteen miles southeast of Rome on August 31, 161 CE. 'Han Foreign Relations', in Denis Twitchett and Michael Loewe (eds), This page was last edited on 22 December 2020, at 02:54. [140], In 156, Antoninus turned 70. );[71] direct evidence for membership, however, is available only for the Arval Brethren. [54][note 4], On 24 January 138, Hadrian selected Aurelius Antoninus, the husband of Marcus's aunt Faustina the Elder, as his new successor. [3] For Marcus's life and rule, the biographies of Hadrian, Antoninus, Marcus, and Lucius are largely reliable, but those of Aelius Verus and Avidius Cassius are not. Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius was born on April 26, 121, in Rome, Italy. [245] In response, Roman forces were moved downstream, to cross the Euphrates at a more southerly point. Fronto urged him in a letter to have plenty of sleep 'so that you may come into the Senate with a good colour and read your speech with a strong voice'. [268], Like many emperors, Marcus spent most of his time addressing matters of law such as petitions and hearing disputes,[269] but unlike many of his predecessors, he was already proficient in imperial administration when he assumed power. There was, however, much precedent. [262] The condition on the northern frontier looked grave. In. Stertz, Stephen A. If the gods are willing we seem to have a hope of recovery. The peace could not hold long; Lower Pannonia did not even have a legion. [143] He ate Alpine cheese at dinner quite greedily. Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. He was the last of the so-called “Five Good Emperors” of Rome, five men who became famous for their leadership of the Roman Empire. [70] At the senate's request, Marcus joined all the priestly colleges (pontifices, augures, quindecimviri sacris faciundis, septemviri epulonum, etc. Yü, Ying-shih. Birthplace: Rome, Italy Location of death: Vindobona Cause of death: unspec. After a long struggle, Marcus managed to push back the invaders. Technically this was not an adoption, the creation of a new and different patria potestas. [156] As the biographer wrote, 'Verus obeyed Marcus...as a lieutenant obeys a proconsul or a governor obeys the emperor'. [289] Biological sons of the emperor, if there were any, were considered heirs;[290] however, it was only the second time that a "non-adoptive" son had succeeded his father, the only other having been a century earlier when Vespasian was succeeded by his son Titus. Ackermann, Schroeder, Terry, Lo Upshur and Whitters, p. 39. [265], Far more dangerous was the invasion of 166, when the Marcomanni of Bohemia, clients of the Roman Empire since 19 AD, crossed the Danube together with the Lombards and other Germanic tribes. Marcus Aurelius was a Roman emperor from 161 to 180 Stoic philosopher. [58] Marcus reportedly greeted the news that Hadrian had become his adoptive grandfather with sadness, instead of joy. [157], Immediately after their senate confirmation, the emperors proceeded to the Castra Praetoria, the camp of the Praetorian Guard. [101] His prayers for Fronto's health were more than conventional, because Fronto was frequently ill; at times, he seems to be an almost constant invalid, always suffering[102] – about one-quarter of the surviving letters deal with the man's sicknesses. The senate complied, and Marcus served under Antoninus, the consul for 139. The Column and Equestrian Statue of Marcus Aurelius still stand in Rome, where they were erected in celebration of his military victories. Marcus's great-grandfather Marcus Annius Verus (I) was a senator and (according to the Historia Augusta) ex-praetor; his grandfather Marcus Annius Verus (II) was made patrician in 73–74. A flamen, or cultic priest, was appointed to minister the cult of the deified Divus Antoninus. [19] The gens Annia was of Italian origins (with legendary claims of descendance from Numa Pompilius) and a branch of it moved to Ucubi, a small town south east of Córdoba in Iberian Baetica. Contemporary coinage commemorates the event, with crossed cornucopiae beneath portrait busts of the two small boys, and the legend temporum felicitas, 'the happiness of the times'. AKA Caesar Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus. Share this quote: Like Quote. And Lucius, raising his hand to heaven, said, ' O Zeus, the king of the Romans in his old age takes up his tablets and goes to school.' Lucius, who had just come to Rome, asked the Emperor, whom he met on his way, where he was going to and on what errand, and Marcus answered, ' it is good even for an old man to learn; I am now on my way to Sextus the philosopher to learn what I do not yet know.' [209], Marcus took a four-day public holiday at Alsium, a resort town on the coast of Etruria. This forced Aurelius to travel to the East to regain control. Marcus, with his preference for the philosophic life, found the imperial office unappealing. Lucius asked Fronto to adjudicate in a dispute he and his friend Calpurnius were having on the relative merits of two actors. The adoptive family of Marcus was of Roman Italo-Gallic origins: the gens Aurelia, into which Marcus was adopted at the age of 17, was a Sabine gens; Antoninus Pius, his adoptive father, came from the Aurelii Fulvi, a branch of the Aurelii based in Roman Gaul. Nonetheless, his biographer attests that his character remained unaffected: 'He still showed the same respect to his relations as he had when he was an ordinary citizen, and he was as thrifty and careful of his possessions as he had been when he lived in a private household'. Barnes, Timothy D. 'Legislation against the Christians'. 186–91. Journal of Roman Studies, Vol. Husband of Salonia Matidia: Levick (2014), p. 161. '[212] He encouraged Marcus to rest, calling on the example of his predecessors (Antoninus had enjoyed exercise in the palaestra, fishing, and comedy),[213] going so far as to write up a fable about the gods' division of the day between morning and evening – Marcus had apparently been spending most of his evenings on judicial matters instead of at leisure. [267], The Costoboci, coming from the Carpathian area, invaded Moesia, Macedonia, and Greece. [194] The governor of Cappadocia, the frontline in all Armenian conflicts, was Marcus Sedatius Severianus, a Gaul with much experience in military matters. Dio is vital for the military history of the period, but his senatorial prejudices and strong opposition to imperial expansion obscure his perspective. Marcus Brutus is best known for being a part of the assassination of Julius Caesar. His downfall came during the Franco-Prussian War, when his efforts to defeat Otto Von Bismarck ended in his capture. If there were anything harmful on the other side of death, [Gods] would have made sure that the ability to avoid it was within you. His Stoic philosophical writings are known as the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius, which were written in Greek.He was succeeded by his son … [38] He was less fond of the mistress his grandfather took and lived with after the death of his wife Rupilia. His brother was Lucius Aurelius Verus Augustus (usually referred to as Verus). One notorious case brought him into conflict with Atticus. Much of their success in this conflict has been attributed to the generals working under Verus, especially Avidius Cassius. He was immediately deified and his ashes were returned to Rome, where they rested in Hadrian's mausoleum (modern Castel Sant'Angelo) until the Visigoth sack of the city in 410. like unto them are the children of men. It had conveyed the drama of the disaster, and the senate had been awed: 'Not more suddenly or violently was the city stirred by the earthquake than the minds of your hearers by your speech'. With Apollonius of Chalcedon and others in this is unknown out otherwise ' he is pondering death. Ceremonies were, in Rome on 26 April 121 trial is unknown labeled De bello Parthico ( on subject... In front of company the Armenian capital Artaxata marcus aurelius' death captured in 163 to be annulled the realities. 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