// Archives

On this day in AD306 the emperor Constantius I died in York

His troops, rather than await a new leader to be appointed for them, hailed the emperor’s son Constantine as Augustus but it was not until 324 that he would gain control over the entire empire.

Tonight in AD64 the Great Fire of Rome started

On the night of the 18th July, AD 64, in the reign of the emperor Nero, the Great Fire of Rome broke out. It raged for six days and seven nights destroying more than half of the city; many citizens were killed and many survivors lost everything.

Happy Birthday Julius Caesar! Part II

The date is not absolutely certain, and the year is subject to slight question but… happy birthday from us, nonetheless!

Happy Birthday Julius Caesar! Part I

The date is not absolutely certain, and the year is subject to slight question but… happy birthday from us, nonetheless!

On this day in AD138 the Emperor Hadrian died and was succeeded by Antoninus Pius.

Coming to the throne in 117, Hadrian was the third of the so-called ‘Five Good Emperors’, who were known for their peaceful and prosperous reigns. Hadrian was also well known for his love of learning and his extensive building works; he was especially loved by the Greeks, who named him as the second founder of the city of Athens because of his many building projects there.

On this day in AD175 Commodus took the toga virilis, the sign he had entered adulthood

The denarius shows Apollo leaning on a column, a type known only under this emperor.

On this day in AD69 Vespasian was acclaimed emperor by his troops in Judaea

This sestertius beautifully illustrates Vespasian’s distinctive portraiture.

On this day in AD221 the emperor Elagabalus adopted Severus Alexander

What prompted the notorious emperor to adopt his young cousin as his heir?

On this day in AD79 the emperor Vespasian died, aged 69.

Vespasian had achieved the position of emperor by virtue of being the last man standing in the short civil war that erupted following Nero’s suicide in June of 68 (the so-called Year of the Four Emperors).

On this day in AD362 Julian banned Christians from teaching using pagan literature

How do you change the world? How can any individual gain sufficient momentum to overthrow the status quo? Should they rely on violent revolution or peaceful evolution, is it more important to gain support from those at the top of society or to appeal to the majority of those found at the bottom?