Happy 1900th birthday, Marcus Aurelius! 🎉 Marcus Aurelius Antoninus was born on 26 April 121 in Rome during the reign of Hadrian to an aristocratic family of Italo-Hispanic origin, the gens Annia. The family had settled in the southern Spanish province of Baetica, in the small town of Ucubi (modern-day Espejo), a few miles southeast… Continue reading 26 April AD 121- Future Philosopher-Emperor Marcus Aurelius is born (#Hadrian1900)
Every year, the Romans celebrated the birthday of their city on the 21st of April, the day on which, according to early traditions, Romulus founded Rome by tracing the pomerium, the sacred urban boundary separating the city (urbs) from the country (ager). The celebrations were held during the Parilia, a rural festival associated with flocks and… Continue reading 21 April AD 121 – Hadrian celebrates Rome’s 874th birthday with circus games (#Hadrian1900)
Today (April 21) is the traditional date given for the founding of Rome. According to Roman mythology, the founders were Romulus and Remus, twin brothers and sons of the god Mars and Rhea Silvia. The twins were then abandoned by their parents as babies (because of a prophecy that they would overthrow their great-uncle Amulius)… Continue reading Happy birthday, Roma!
On 24 January AD 119, Hadrian celebrated his 43rd birthday in Rome, the first he spent in the capital as emperor. To mark the occasion, the emperor put on a gladiatorial show which lasted for six successive days. As reported by Dio Cassius and the Historia Augusta, many wild animals were slaughtered, including one hundred… Continue reading 24 January AD 119 – Hadrian celebrates his 43rd birthday in Rome with gladiatorial games (#Hadrian1900)
On January AD 119, Hadrian celebrated the new year (year 872 Ab urbe condita) in Rome as consul for the third time (COS III) and appointed Publius Dasumius Rusticus as ordinary consul. Rusticus is known only from his consulship and the reason why he received this prestigious honour is not known. It may be that… Continue reading January AD 119 – Hadrian inaugurates the new year in Rome (#Hadrian1900)
Upon his return to Rome (see previous post here), Hadrian’s first task was to regain the people’s favours after the killing of four ex-consuls who were accused of plotting against him. To boost his popularity and win over public opinion in Rome, the new princeps introduced a number of important financial reforms such as distributing largesses and remitting… Continue reading The early reforms and economic policies of Hadrian (#Hadrian1900)
With thousands of archaeological sites, Jerusalem is one of the most excavated cities on the planet and to walk its streets is to walk through a thousand years of history. This ancient city has been fought over more than any other place. It has been conquered, destroyed and rebuilt many times and Hadrian played a… Continue reading Exploring Aelia Capitolina, Hadrian’s Jerusalem
About a year and a half after the discovery of the bronze statue of Hadrian (see previous post here) in 1977, six fragments of a monumental Latin inscription – the largest ever found in Israel – were discovered near the camp of the Sixth Legion in Tel Shalem. The inscription, inscribed in three lines, had belonged… Continue reading The inscription dedicated to Hadrian from the Tel Shalem arch
This week marks the bimillennial anniversary of the death of the first Roman emperor, Augustus. He died on 19th August AD 14 at the age of 75 after a 41-year reign, the longest in Roman history. Augustus left his mark on Rome and western civilisation like few others. He vastly expanded the Roman Empire, established… Continue reading A tribute to Augustus
Marcus Aurelius was born Marcus Annius Verus on 26 April AD 121 of an aristocratic family of Spanish origin (from Ucubi, a small town southeast of Cordoba in Baetica). He was the last of the "Five Good Emperors" of Rome and a major Stoic philosopher. When Marcus Aurelius was a young child, he gained… Continue reading Felix dies natalis, Marce Aureli!