Short Biography about the life of Avitus
Short Biography profile and facts about one of the most famous Romans of all, in the life of Avitus, Emperor of the Western Roman Empire.
- Name commonly known as: Avitus
- Latin Roman Name: Marcus Maecilius Flavius Eparchius Avitus
- Reigned as Roman Emperor / Caesar: July 9, 455 - 17 October 456
Dynasty / Historical Period: Western Empire (394 - 476) which led to the disintegration of Roman authority and the Fall of the Roman Empire
- Date of Birth: c. 395
- Place and Date of Death: 457AD
For the names of the next Roman emperors in the East and the West of the Empire refer to the Timeline of Roman Emperors
Interesting facts about the life of Avitus
Obtain a fast overview of the times of the Roman Emperor Avitus from the following facts and information about his life. There was panic in the streets due to the after the sack of Rome by the Vandals. The previous emperor, Petronius Maximus, was killed in the streets by the mob on 31 May 455. On 9 July 455 Avitus was proclaimed emperor with backing by the Visigoths. Marcian, emperor of the Eastern Roman empire, refused to recognize the emperors of the Western empire and did nothing to aid the west during Attila's campaigns or when the Vandals sacked Rome. In 456 war with the Vandals continued but the attempts by Avitus to defeat them failed. There was famine in Rome and Avitus was forced to disband his Visigoth bodyguard in Rome. Leo I, the Emperor of the Eastern Roman Empire, who was based in Constantinople, tried to control Italian affairs through Ricimer, who was a military leader and the grandson of Wallia, king of the Visigoths. Ricimer incited rebellion amongst the Romans forcing Avitus to abdicate on 17 October 456 and he fled to Arles and then Gaul. His attempt to return to Rome ended when he was defeated in battle and captured near Placentia. Ricimer granted the Avitus the position of bishop of Placentia. But he was not left in peace and the senate ordered his execution. Once again Avitus fled to Gaul but on the way he died. The cause of death is unknown. There were rumours that he had died from the plague but this could have been a cover story for his assassination. Avitus was succeeded by Petronius Maximus.