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Valerian

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History, Facts and Information about Valerian
The content of this article provides interesting history, facts and information about the Emperor Valerian who ruled the empire of Ancient Rome. Read about the life of Valerian who can be described or remembered as:

 "The Emperor who was skinned and stuffed with manure"

Short Biography about the life of Valerian
Short Biography profile and facts about one of the most famous Romans of all, in the life of Valerian, Emperor of Rome and provinces of the Roman Empire.

  • Name commonly known as: Valerian
  • Latin Roman Name: Caesar Publius Licinius Valerianus Pius Felix Invictus Augustus
  • Reigned as Roman Emperor / Caesar: 253-259 (with Gallienus as co-emperor)
  • Dynasty / Historical Period: Crisis of the Third Century (235 - 284). Era of the Barracks Emperors (238 - 268)
  • Date of Birth: c. 200
  • Name of previous Emperor: His predecessor or the Emperor before Valerian was Aemilian
  • Family connections / Genealogy
    • Name of Father:
    • Name of Mother:
    • Married: Egnatia Mariniana
    • Children: Gallienus & Valerianus Minor
  • Place and Date of Death: Died After 260 at Bishapur (a city in Iran)
  • Name of next Emperor:  The successor to Valerian was Gallienus

Interesting facts about the life of Valerian
Obtain a fast overview of the times of the Roman Emperor Valerian from the following facts and information about his life. Why was Valerian famous? Accomplishments, achievements and important events. Valerian supported the co-emperors Gallus and his son, Volusian. When threatened by the ambitious Aemilian, Valerian raised reinforcements from Germany to join their forces. But he failed to arrive in time. In August 253 AD their troops mutinied and the two co-emperors were murdered. Their troops then declared for Aemilian who became the next emperor. General Valerian heard of the news of their defeat and refused to accept Aemilian as the new emperor. His mood was captured by his troops and with their support Valerian was promptly declared emperor. Valerian headed to Rome to confront Aemilian and avenge the death of his old friend Gallus. Aemilian answered the challenge and went with his army to meet Valerian and his army near Spoleto, 78 miles from Rome. When it became evident that Valerian's forces were larger, the soldiers of Aemilian turned on Aemilian rather than risk their own lives. They then murdered their leader. Valerian, the Censor, then took the Roman throne. In Rome, the Senate quickly acknowledged Valerian as Emperor. His first act as emperor was to make his son Gallienus his co-emperor.

The Reign of Valerian
A very high character is given to Valerian, whose reign, however, was filled with disasters. Having joined his son Gallienus with him, Valerian vainly sought to repel the attacks of innumerable enemies on every side of the empire including the Goths, the Franks, the Scythians and the Persians. In 259AD a campaign against the Persians culminating in the Battle of Edessa was fought. The Romans suffered a humiliating defeat. Valerian was taken prisoner and the entire 70,000-strong Roman force being slain or captured. Valerian languished for nine years in captivity, his unnatural son making no effort for his liberation. Valerian died in captivity at Bishapur, a city in modern day Iran. Valerian's body was later skinned and stuffed with manure to produce a trophy of Roman submission preserved in a Persian temple.

Valerian - Crisis of the Third Century - Era of the Barracks Emperors (238 - 268)
The Crisis of the Third Century was the period in Roman history following the death of Alexander Severus when Rome entered into the era of Military Anarchy commonly known as the Crisis of the Third Century. During the Crisis of the Third Century, lasting over 50 years, not one single Emperor died of natural causes. Revolts sprung up in virtually all of the provinces and ambitious men struggled for power. During the crisis there were civil wars, street fights between the citizens of Rome and soldiers of the imperial guard,  fierce foreign enemies, plagues, famines, fire and earthquakes. The "Barracks Emperors" (238 - 268) were all military generals who seized power by force. Taxation was high, the economy was failing and Roman territories were being captured by barbarians and the Roman government was unstable. During this uncertain era and violent environment the promise of an afterlife seemed to be the only thing to hope for. And people started to turn towards a new religion, Christianity.  

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