Arcadius

Arcadius (Latin: Flavius Arcadius Augustus; Greek: Ἀρκάδιος; 1 January 377 – 1 May 408) was Eastern Roman Emperor from 395 to 408. He was the eldest son of Theodosius I and his first wife Aelia Flaccilla, and brother of the Western Emperor Honorius. A weak ruler, his reign was dominated by a series of powerful ministers and by his wife, Aelia Eudoxia.

Arcadius
Augustus of the Eastern Roman Empire
Arcadius Istanbul Museum
Idealising bust of Arcadius in the Theodosian style combines elements of classicism with the new hieratic style (Istanbul Archaeology Museum)
Emperor of the Roman Empire
ReignJanuary 383 – 395 (Augustus under his father);
395 – 1 May 408 (emperor in the east, with his brother Honorius emperor in the west)
PredecessorTheodosius I
SuccessorTheodosius II
Co-emperorsTheodosius I (383–395)
Honorius (393–408, Western Emperor, 395–408)
Theodosius II (402–408)
Born1 January 377
Hispania
Died1 May 408 (aged 31)
SpouseAelia Eudoxia
IssueFlacilla
Pulcheria
Arcadia
Theodosius II
Marina
Full name
Flavius Arcadius
Regnal name
Imperator Caesar Flavius Arcadius Augustus
DynastyTheodosian
FatherTheodosius I
MotherAelia Flaccilla
ReligionNicene Christianity

History

Arcadius was born in Hispania, the elder son of Theodosius I and Aelia Flaccilla, and brother of Honorius, who would become the first Western Roman Emperor. His father declared him an Augustus and co-ruler for the eastern half of the Empire in January 383. His younger brother was also declared Augustus in 393, for the Western half.

As emperors, however, both Theodosius' sons are famous for their extraordinarily weak wills and pliancy to ambitious ministers.[1] At the death of their father, Honorius was under the control of the Romanized Vandal magister militum Flavius Stilicho while Arcadius was dominated by the Praetorian Prefect of the East, Rufinus. Stilicho, who is alleged by some to have aspired to control both Emperors, set off to the east shortly after beginning his reign, leading back the Gothic mercenaries whom Theodosius had taken west in the civil war with Arbogastes and Eugenius;[2] Rufinus, who had meanwhile stained his own rule with marked brutality and corruption,[3] ordered Stilicho to retreat on threat of war, revealing his suspicions. Stilicho complied and sent his army on under the command of its general, Gainas, secretly his ally. When Rufinus greeted Gainas with his army before Constantinople, he was suddenly assassinated on the parade ground by the Goths.[4] Arcadius had been on the verge of marrying Rufinus' daughter, when the palace eunuchs under the influence of Eutropius, apprehensive of this increase of the Prefect's power, conspired to switch the bride with the daughter of Buto, a Frankish general, called Aelia Eudoxia.[5] Aside from the indignity to Rufinus, who was not informed of the change in Arcadius' plans, and who was caught off guard in the middle of the marriage ceremony, when the nuptial procession went to Eudoxia's residence rather than his own, this change hinted at his fall from another aspect, since Eudoxia had been raised, after her father's death, in the home of a general allegedly murdered by Rufinus.[6] Subsequently, the eunuch Eutropius and Arcadius' wife, Aelia Eudoxia, would assume Rufinus' place as advisors, or guardians, of the emperor.[7]

Eutropius' influence lasted four years, but ultimately, he became as unpopular as Rufinus.[8] Claudian, the court poet of Honorius, alleges that the eunuch openly sold the governorships of the provinces, and the civil magistracies, to the highest bidders; at the same time, many of the upper classes were executed on trumped up charges, and their estates confiscated to swell the coffers of the minister and his accomplices.[9] New treason laws were enacted under his auspices, by which the thought was not separated from the execution of the crime, and by which the sons of the guilty were excluded from the rights of citizenship.[10] The last straw came in 399 when Eutropius, a eunuch and former slave, had himself nominated to the consulship, an unprecedented act.[11] In the same year the Ostrogoths who had been settled in Asia Minor by Theodosius I revolted, and Gainas, Eutropius' personal enemy, who was appointed to suppress the insurrection after Eutropius' appointees failed, ultimately persuaded the emperor to give in to their demands, which included, inter alia, the dismissal of Eutropius.[12] Eudoxia, sensing Eutropius' perilous situation, quickly deserted her former ally, and convinced her husband to give in to the Ostrogoths' demands. Subsequently, Eudoxia alone would have influence over the emperor. That same year, on 13 July, Arcadius issued an edict ordering that all remaining non-Christian temples should be immediately demolished.

After Eutropius' fall, Gainas joined the rebel Ostrogoths, and forced Arcadius to make him Magister Militum, or chief general of the Roman armies, and therefore the most powerful minister in the state.[13] Additionally, he demanded place for settlement for his troops in Thrace. Arcadius consented, but the Ostrogoths' Arianism and hostile attitude brought them into conflict with the populace of Constantinople, and Gainas' garrison in the capital was overpowered and massacred in a general riot. Gainas reacted by declaring open war on Arcadius, and advanced on Constantinople before realising it was too strong for him to take. After this the Goths attempted to recross the Hellespont and invade Asia, but were defeated by Fravitta, a loyal Goth in the Roman service who replaced Gainas. The latter fled to the Danube with his remaining followers, intending to establish an independent kingdom in Scythia, but was ultimately defeated and killed by Uldin the Hun.[14]

Eudoxia's influence was strongly opposed by John Chrysostom, the Patriarch of Constantinople, who felt that she had used her family's wealth to gain control over the Emperor. Eudoxia used her influence to have Chrysostom deposed in 404, but she died later that year. Eudoxia gave to Arcadius four children: three daughters, Pulcheria, Arcadia and Marina, and one son, Theodosius, the future Emperor Theodosius II.

Arcadius was dominated for the rest of his rule by Anthemius, the Praetorian Prefect, who made peace with Stilicho in the West. Arcadius himself was more concerned with appearing to be a pious Christian than he was with political or military matters, and he died, only nominally in control of his Empire, in 408.

Arcadius gold multiple CdM Paris Beistegui 239
Solidus of Arcadius.

Character and works

In this reign of a weak Emperor dominated by court politics, a major theme was the ambivalence felt by prominent individuals and the court parties that formed and regrouped round them towards barbarians, which in Constantinople at this period meant Goths. In the well-documented episode that revolved around Gainas, a number of Gothic foederati stationed in the capital were massacred, the survivors fleeing under the command of Gainas to Thrace, where they were tracked down by imperial troops and slaughtered and Gainas dispatched. The episode has been traditionally interpreted as a paroxysm of anti-barbarian reaction that served to stabilize the East. The main source for the affair is a mythology à clef by Synesius of Cyrene, Aegyptus sive de providentia (400),[15] an Egyptianising allegory that embodies a covert account of the events, the exact interpretation of which continues to baffle scholars. Synesius' De regno, which claims to be addressed to Arcadius himself, contains a tirade against Alaric and the Goths, who had been ravaging Greece before being pacified by Arcadius' offer of peace and independent settlement in Illyricum, in 398.[16]

A new forum was built in the name of Arcadius, on the seventh hill of Constantinople, the Xērolophos, in which a column was begun to commemorate his 'victory' over Gainas (although the column was only completed after Arcadius' death by Theodosius II).

The Pentelic marble portrait head of Arcadius (now in the Istanbul Archaeology Museum) was discovered in Istanbul close to the Forum Tauri, in June 1949, in excavating foundations for new buildings of the University at Beyazit.[17] The neck was designed to be inserted in a torso, but no statue, base or inscription was found. The diadem is a fillet with rows of pearls along its edges and a rectangular stone set about with pearls over the young Emperor's forehead.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Edward Gibbon, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, (The Modern Library, 1932), ch. XXIX., p. 1038, 1046
  2. ^ Gibbon, pp. 1033-36
  3. ^ Gibbon, pp. 1028-32
  4. ^ Gibbon, p. 1037
  5. ^ Gibbon, p. 1032
  6. ^ Gibbon, p. 1029, 1032
  7. ^ Gibbon, p. 1039
  8. ^ Gibbon, ch. XXXII., p. 1151
  9. ^ Gibbon, p. 1153, 1154
  10. ^ Gibbon, p. 1156, 1157
  11. ^ Gibbon, p. 1153
  12. ^ Gibbon, pp. 1157-59
  13. ^ Gibbon, p. 1161
  14. ^ Gibbon, p. 1162, 1163
  15. ^ The date 400 is argued for by Cameron and Long 1993.
  16. ^ Gibbon, ch. XXX., p. 1052
  17. ^ Nezih Firatli, "A Late Antique Imperial Portrait Recently Discovered at Istanbul" American Journal of Archaeology 55.1 (January 1951), pp. 67–71.

References

  • A. Cameron and J. Long. 1993. Barbarians and Politics at the Court of Arcadius (Berkeley/Oxford)
  • Edward Gibbon, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (The Modern Library, 1932, New York)

External links

Media related to Arcadius at Wikimedia Commons

Arcadius
Born: 377/378 Died: 1 May 408
Regnal titles
Preceded by
Theodosius I
Eastern Roman Emperor
395-408
Succeeded by
Theodosius II
Political offices
Preceded by
Richomeres,
Flavius Clearchus
Consul of the Roman Empire
385
with Flavius Bauto
Succeeded by
Honorius,
Flavius Euodius
Preceded by
Eutolmius Tatianus,
Quintus Aurelius Symmachus
Consul of the Roman Empire
392
with Rufinus
Succeeded by
Theodosius I,
Eugenius,
Abundantius
Preceded by
Theodosius I,
Eugenius,
Abundantius
Consul of the Roman Empire
394
with Honorius and Virius Nicomachus Flavianus
Succeeded by
Anicius Hermogenianus Olybrius,
Anicius Probinus
Preceded by
Anicius Hermogenianus Olybrius,
Anicius Probinus
Consul of the Roman Empire
396
with Honorius
Succeeded by
Caesarius,
Nonius Atticus
Preceded by
Fravitta,
Flavius Vincentius
Consul of the Roman Empire
402
with Honorius
Succeeded by
Theodosius II,
Flavius Rumoridus
Preceded by
Stilicho,
Anthemius
Consul of the Roman Empire
406
with Anicius Petronius Probus
Succeeded by
Honorius,
Theodosius II
400s (decade)

The 400s decade ran from January 1, 400, to December 31, 409.

Aelia Eudoxia

Aelia Eudoxia (Greek: Αἰλία Εὐδοξία; died 6 October 404) was a Roman Empress consort by marriage to the Roman Emperor Arcadius. The marriage was the source of some controversy, as it was arranged by Eutropius, one of the eunuch court officials, who was attempting to expand his influence, and whom she later had executed. As Empress, she came into conflict with John Chrysostom, the Patriarch of Constantinople, who was popular among the common folk for his denunciations of imperial and clerical excess. She had five children, four of whom survived to adulthood, including her husband's successor Theodosius II, but she had two additional pregnancies that ended in either miscarriages or stillbirths and she died as a result of the last one.

Alaric I

Alaric I (; Gothic: *Alareiks, *𐌰𐌻𐌰𐍂𐌴𐌹𐌺𐍃, "ruler of all"; Latin: Alaricus; 370 (or 375) – 410 AD) was the first King of the Visigoths from 395–410, son (or paternal grandson) of chieftain Rothestes. He is best known for his sack of Rome in 410, which marked a decisive event in the decline of the Western Roman Empire.

Alaric began his career under the Gothic soldier Gainas, and later joined the Roman army. He first appeared as leader of a mixed band of Goths and allied peoples, who invaded Thrace in 391 but were stopped by the half-Vandal Roman General Stilicho. In 394, he led a Gothic force of 20,000 that helped Roman Emperor Theodosius defeat the Frankish usurper Arbogast at the Battle of Frigidus. Despite sacrificing around 10,000 of his men, Alaric received little recognition from the emperor. Disappointed, he left the army, was elected reiks of the Visigoths in 395 and marched toward Constantinople until he was diverted by Roman forces. He then moved southward into Greece, where he sacked Piraeus (the port of Athens) and destroyed Corinth, Megara, Argos and Sparta. Nonetheless, the Eastern emperor Arcadius appointed Alaric magister militum ("master of the soldiers") in Illyricum.

In 401 Alaric invaded Italy, but was defeated by Stilicho at Pollentia (modern Pollenza) on April 6, 402. A second invasion that same year also ended in defeat at the Battle of Verona, although he did force the Roman Senate to pay a large subsidy to the Visigoths. During Radagaisus' Italian invasion in 406, he remained idle in Illyria. In 408, Western Emperor Honorius ordered the execution of Stilicho and his family, in response to rumors that the general had made a deal with Alaric. Honorius then incited the Roman population to massacre tens of thousands of wives and children of foederati Goths serving in the Roman military. The Gothic soldiers then defected to Alaric, increasing the size of his force to around 30,000 men, and joined his march on Rome to avenge their murdered families.Moving swiftly along Roman roads, Alaric sacked the cities of Aquileia and Cremona and ravaged the lands along the Adriatic Sea. The Visigothic leader thereupon laid siege to Rome in 408, but eventually the Senate granted him a substantial subsidy. In addition, he forced the Senate to liberate all 40,000 Gothic slaves in Rome. Honorius, however, refused to appoint Alaric as the commander of the Western Roman Army, and in 409 the Visigoths again surrounded Rome. Alaric lifted his blockade after proclaiming Attalus Western Emperor. Attalus appointed him magister utriusque militiae ("master of both services"), but refused to allow him to send an army into Africa. Negotiations with Honorius broke down, after which Alaric deposed Attalus in the summer of 410 and besieged Rome for the third time. Allies within the capital opened the gates for him on August 24, and for three days his troops sacked the city. Although the Visigoths plundered Rome, they treated its inhabitants humanely and burned only a few buildings. Having abandoned a plan to occupy Sicily and North Africa after the destruction of his fleet in a storm, Alaric died as the Visigoths were marching northward.

Arcadio Huang

Arcadio Huang (Chinese: 黃嘉略, born in Xinghua, modern Putian, in Fujian, 15 November 1679, died on 1 October 1716 in Paris), was a Chinese Christian convert, brought to Paris by the Missions étrangères. He took a pioneering role in the teaching of the Chinese language in France around 1715. He was preceded in France by his compatriot Michael Shen Fu-Tsung, who visited the country in 1684.

His main works, conducted with the assistance of young Nicolas Fréret, are the first Chinese-French lexicon, the first Chinese grammar of the Chinese, and the diffusion in France of the Kangxi system with two hundred fourteen radicals, which was used in the preparation of his lexicon.

His early death in 1716 prevented him from finishing his work, however, and Étienne Fourmont, who received the task of sorting his papers, assumed all the credit for their publication.

Only the insistence of Nicolas Fréret, as well as the rediscovery of the memories of Huang Arcadio have re-established the pioneering work of Huang, as the basis which enabled French linguists to address more seriously the Chinese language.

Arcadius Kahan

Arcadius Kahan (January 16, 1920 – 1982) was a noted 20th-century economic historian and Professor at the University of Chicago. Arcadius was author of 'Russian Economic History, The Nineteenth Century' also 'The Plow the Hammer and the Knout' The latter book presents his explanation of the foundation in the Eighteenth Century of the Russian economy and power structure.

Kahan had been a student in the Communist Party when the Nazis invaded his country, Poland, in 1939. He joined an underground group which engaged in acts of sabotage and which struggled not to be caught, a group in which he became a leader. After the Soviet army pushed the Nazis out of Poland, he expected to help in forming a new government. Instead, the Soviets set up their own state within Poland and drove Kahan to flee the country.

Kahan came to the U of Chicago after severe persecution in the old Soviet Union that included a stay in the Treblinka prison, apparently a prison used by the Soviets which was on the site of the wartime extermination camp.

As a member of the Economics Department at the University of Chicago, Kahan straddled a fine line between the principles which he brought from his socialist youth and the neoclassical school of economic thought associated with the Department. He won the confidence of Milton Freedman with his work on the economic effects of the persecution of Jews in 19th century Russia. Kahan concluded that this had a significant impact on Russia's economic backwardness, particularly as compared with western Europe. He argued that this was an example of dysfunctional governmental interference in the economy, which drew on the principles of the neoliberals in the Chicago school. References: /

Arcadius of Antioch

Arcadius of Antioch (Greek: Ἀρκάδιος ὁ Ἀντιοχεύς) was a Greek grammarian who flourished in the 2nd century CE. According to the Suda, he wrote treatises on orthography and syntax, and an onomasticon (vocabulary), described as "a wonderful production."Ancient Greek: Περὶ τόνων (Peri tonon), an epitome of the major work of Herodian on general prosody in twenty books, was wrongly attributed to Arcadius; it is probably the work of Theodosius or a grammarian named Aristodemus. This epitome was the work of a forger of the 16th century. Though meager and carelessly assembled, it preserves the order of the original and so affords a foundation for its reconstruction.

Arcadius of Bourges

Saint Arcadius (died 549 AD) was a bishop of Bourges. He took part in the Third Council of Orléans (538). He was bishop for about 15 years. His episcopate is sometimes said to have lasted from 531 to 541.

Arcadius of Mauretania

"Saint Arcadius" redirects here. For the French saint, see Arcadius of Bourges.Arcadius of Mauretania (died c. 302) is venerated as a saint and martyr. Tradition states that he was a prominent citizen of Caesarea in Mauretania Caesariensis (present-day Cherchell), who hid away in the countryside to avoid being forced to worship the Roman gods. However, he was caught and arrested. His legend states that he suffered a grisly death. His limbs were cut off, joint by joint, until all that remained were his trunk and head. According to his legend, as Arcadius looked around at all the pieces of him, hacked off, and lying on the ground, he could still speak, and cried out, "You are happy, my members. Now you really belong to God. You have all been sacrificed to Him."

Bebearia arcadius

Bebearia arcadius, the Arcadian, is a butterfly in the family Nymphalidae. It is found in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Ivory Coast and Ghana. The habitat consists of wetter forests.

Adults are attracted to fallen fruit.

Byzantine Empire under the Theodosian dynasty

The Eastern Roman Empire was ruled by the Theodosian dynasty from 379, the accession of Theodosius I, to 457, the death of Marcian. The rule of the Theodosian dynasty saw the final East-West division of the Roman Empire, between Arcadius and Honorius in 395. Whilst divisions of the Roman Empire had occurred before, the Empire would never again be fully reunited. The reign of the sons of Theodosius I contributed heavily to the crisis that under the fifth century eventually resulted in the complete collapse of Roman control in the West.

The Eastern Empire was largely spared the difficulties faced by the West in the third and fourth centuries, due in part to a more firmly established urban culture and greater financial resources, which allowed it to placate invaders with tribute and pay foreign mercenaries. Throughout the fifth century, various invading armies overran the Western Empire but spared the east.

The Theodosian dynasty also ruled the Western Roman Empire from 392 to 455 AD.

Column of Arcadius

The column of Arcadius (Turkish: Arkadyos Sütunu or Avrat Taşı) was a Roman triumphal column begun in 401 in the forum of Arcadius in Constantinople to commemorate Arcadius's triumph over the Goths under Gainas in 400. Arcadius died in 408, but the decoration of the column was only completed in 421, so the monument was dedicated to his successor Theodosius II.

Strongly inspired by the Column of Theodosius set up in the forum Tauri in the 380s, the column of Arcadius follows the tradition of triumphal columns such as those of Trajan and Marcus Aurelius. It was destroyed in either the 16th or the 18th century when, weakened by earthquakes, it threatened to topple and had to be taken down. Only its massive masonry base of red granite now survives, known as the Avret Tash in Turkish , located on Haseki Kadın Sokuk in the Fatih district of Istanbul. There is no trace of the shaft, originally made of serpentine. Detail of the shaft's decoration is conserved in a series of drawings made in 1575 and preserved in the Freshfield Album, kept at Trinity College, Cambridge.

Eutropius (consul)

Eutropius (died 399) was a fourth-century Eastern Roman official.

Forum of Arcadius

The Forum of Arcadius (Latin: Forum Arcadii, Greek: Φόρος τοῦ Ἀρκαδίου), was built by the Emperor Arcadius in the city of Constantinople, now Istanbul.

Built in 403, it was built in the Xerolophos area and was the last forum before reaching the Constantinian city walls and the Golden Gate in a line of forums, including the Forum of Theodosius, the Forum of Constantine, the Forum Bovis, and the Forum Amastrianum, built westward from the city center along the Mese.The forum was later converted to a bazaar by the Ottomans, referred to as the Avrat Pazarı or "Women's Bazaar", which was mistaken with the Slave Market at Tavukpazari near Nur-u Osmaniye used for the auctioning of female slaves, otherwise known as 'Cariye', who technically during the period had a completely different social status than regular slaves. This practice was abolished in 1847 during Reshid Pasha's time possibly due to the British influence Slavery Abolition Act 1833.

The Column of Arcadius, located in the center of the forum, was decorated with spiral bands of sculpture in bas relief representing the triumphs of the emperor, like Trajan's Column in Rome. At the top of the column, which was more than 50m high, there was an enormous Corinthian capital surmounted by an equestrian statue of Arcadius, placed there in 421 by his son, Theodosius II. This statue was eventually toppled from the column and destroyed during an earthquake in 704. The column itself remained standing for another thousand years until it was deliberately demolished in 1715, when it appeared to be in imminent danger of collapsing on the neighboring houses. Now all that remains are the mutilated base and some fragments of sculpture from the column which are on display in the Istanbul Archaeological Museum.

Gainas

Gainas was a Gothic leader who served the Eastern Roman Empire as magister militum during the reigns of Theodosius I and Arcadius.

Gainas began his military career as a common foot-soldier, but later commanded the barbarian contingent of Theodosius' army against the usurper Eugenius in 394. Under the command of Gainas, a man of "no lineage", was the young Alaric of the Balti dynasty. In 395, Stilicho sent him with his troops, under the cover of strengthening the armies of the East, to depose the prefect Rufinus, who was hostile to the Stilicho. Gainas murdered Rufinus, but proceeded to join the eunuch Eutropius, who was likewise Stilicho's enemy. Gainas assumed a high place in the administration of the Eastern Roman Empire, controlled by Eudoxia, Arcadius' wife, and Eutropius, his favorite.In 399 he replaced magister militum Leo after the latter failed to quell the insurrection of the Ostrogoths in Asia Minor, led by the chieftain Tribigild. Gainas too failed to put down the invasions; according to some sources, Gainas was conspiring with Tribigild in order to effect the downfall of Eutropius, who by now was on bad terms with Gainas. After suffering repeated failures against the Ostrogoths, who continued devastating the provinces of Asia Minor, Gainas advised Arcadius to accept Tribigild's terms, which included the death of Eutropius. Gainas then showed his true colors, openly joining Tribigld with all his forces; he forced Arcadius to sign a treaty whereby the Goths would be allowed to settle in Thrace, entrusted with the defense of that frontier against the barbarians beyond the Danube. Gainas proceeded to install his forces in Constantinople, where he ruled for several months. He attempted in effect to copy the success of Stilicho in the West and posed a danger to the survival of the Eastern Roman Empire. He deposed all the anti-Goth officials and had Eutropius executed, though he had previously only been banished; after the intervention of St. John Chrysostom the others were spared.While a somewhat competent military commander, the zealous Arian Gainas was patently unable to administer a city of 200-400,000 whose Graeco-Roman populace intensely resented barbarian Goths and Arian Christians. Gainas' compromises with Tribigild led to rumors that he had colluded with Tribigild, his kinsman; when he returned to Constantinople in 400, riots broke out. He attempted to evacuate his soldiers but even then the citizens of Constantinople managed to trap and kill 7,000 armed Goths, spurred to action by the Empress Aelia Eudoxia.In response, Gainas and his forces attempted to flee back across the Hellespont, but their rag-tag ad hoc fleet was met and destroyed by another Goth in Imperial service, Fravitta, who was subsequently made consul for 401 but was later accused of treason and executed as well. After this battle, Gainas fled across the Danube and was caught by the Huns under Uldin. Gainas was killed, and his head was sent by Uldin to Arcadius c. 400 as a diplomatic gift.Gainas' usurpation is the subject of the Egyptian Tale and might also be the subject of the speech On Imperial Rule by Synesius of Cyrene who may have represented an anti-barbarian faction within the Byzantine nobility.

Herwig Wolfram, the historian of the Goths, notes that the death of Gainas marks an end to the relatively pluralistic Gothic tribal development with independent warbands: "thereafter only two ethnogeneses were possible: that of the Roman Goths within the empire and that of the Hunnic Goths at its doorstep".

Honorius (emperor)

Honorius (Latin: Flavius Honorius Augustus; 9 September 384 – 15 August 423) was Western Roman Emperor from 395 to 423. He was the younger son of emperor Theodosius I and his first wife Aelia Flaccilla, and brother of Arcadius, who was the Eastern Emperor from 395 until his death in 408. During his reign, Rome was sacked for the first time in almost 800 years.Even by the standards of the rapidly declining Western Empire, Honorius's reign was precarious and chaotic. His reign was supported by his principal general, Stilicho, who was successively Honorius's guardian (during his childhood) and his father-in-law (after the emperor became an adult). Stilicho's generalship helped preserve some level of stability, but with his execution in 408, the Western Roman Empire moved closer to collapse.

Rufinus (consul)

Flavius Rufinus (c. 335 – November 27, 395) was a 4th-century East Roman statesman of Gaulish extraction who served as Praetorian prefect of the East for the emperor Theodosius I, as well as for his son Arcadius, under whom Rufinus was the actual power behind the throne.

He was the subject of the verse invective In Rufinum by the western court poet Claudian.

Theodosian dynasty

The Theodosian dynasty was a Roman family that rose to eminence in the waning days of the Roman Empire.

Theodosius I

Theodosius I (Latin: Flavius Theodosius Augustus; Greek: Θεοδόσιος Αʹ; 11 January 347 – 17 January 395), also known as Theodosius the Great, was a Roman Emperor from 379 to 395, and the last emperor to rule over both the Eastern and the Western halves of the Roman Empire. On accepting his elevation, he campaigned against Goths and other barbarians who had invaded the Empire. His resources were not sufficient to destroy them or drive them out, which had been Roman policy for centuries in dealing with invaders. By treaty, which followed his indecisive victory at the end of the Gothic War, they were established as foederati, autonomous allies of the Empire, south of the Danube, in Illyricum, within the Empire's borders. They were given lands and allowed to remain under their own leaders, a grave departure from Roman hegemonic ways. This turn away from traditional policies was accommodationist and had grave consequences for the Western Empire from the beginning of the century, as the Romans found themselves with the impossible task of defending the borders and deal with unruly federates within. Theodosius I was obliged to fight two destructive civil wars, successively defeating the usurpers Magnus Maximus in 387-388 and Eugenius in 394, though not without material cost to the power of the Empire.

He issued decrees that effectively made Nicene Christianity the official state church of the Roman Empire. He neither prevented nor punished the destruction of prominent Hellenistic temples of classical antiquity, including the Temple of Apollo in Delphi and the Serapeum in Alexandria. He dissolved the Order of the Vestal Virgins in Rome. In 393, he banned the pagan rituals of the Olympics in Ancient Greece. After his death, Theodosius's young sons Arcadius and Honorius inherited the east and west halves of the empire respectively, and the Roman Empire was never again re-united, though Eastern Roman emperors after Zeno would claim the united title after Julius Nepos's death in 480.

Theodosius II

There were also a Theodosius II of Abkhazia, a Patriarch Theodosius II of Alexandria and a Theodosius II of Constantinople. Additionally, Pope Theodoros I of Alexandria is also known as Theodosius II in Coptic history.Theodosius II (Latin: Flavius Theodosius Junior Augustus; Greek: Θεοδόσιος Βʹ; 10 April 401 – 28 July 450), commonly surnamed Theodosius the Younger, or Theodosius the Calligrapher, was the Eastern Roman Emperor for most of his life, taking the throne as an infant in 402 and ruling as the Eastern Empire's sole emperor after the death of his father Arcadius in 408. He is mostly known for promulgating the Theodosian law code, and for the construction of the Theodosian Walls of Constantinople. He also presided over the outbreak of two great Christological controversies, Nestorianism and Eutychianism.

Roman and Byzantine emperors
Principate
27 BC – 235 AD
Crisis
235–284
Dominate
284–395
Western Empire
395–480
Eastern/
Byzantine Empire

395–1204
Empire of Nicaea
1204–1261
Eastern/
Byzantine Empire

1261–1453

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