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By Johannes Wienand

Contested Monarchy reappraises the wide-ranging and lasting transformation of the Roman monarchy among the Principate and overdue Antiquity. The e-book takes as its concentration the century from Diocletian to Theodosius I (284-395), a interval within which the steadiness of monarchical rule depended seriously at the emperors mobility, on collegial or dynastic rule, and at the army answer of inner political crises. even as, profound non secular alterations changed the premises of political interplay and symbolic conversation among the emperor and his matters, and administrative and armed forces readjustments replaced the institutional foundations of the Roman monarchy. This quantity concentrates at the measures taken via emperors of this era to deal with the altering framework in their rule. the gathering examines monarchy alongside 3 detailed but intertwined fields: Administering the Empire, acting the Monarchy, and Balancing non secular switch. each one box possesses its personal historiography and method, and hence has often been handled individually. This volumes multifaceted technique builds on fresh scholarship and traits to ascertain imperial rule in a extra built-in model. With new paintings from quite a lot of foreign students, Contested Monarchy deals a clean survey of the function of the Roman monarchy in a interval of important and enduring switch.

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The fact that a senatorial career now involved serving the emperor in offices that had no Republican precedents, but which had evolved out of the private administration of the imperial household, changed what it meant to be a senator. In the wake of the Constantinian reforms, the internal hierarchy of the senate was no longer defined by the five ancient magistracies of the Roman state but by senior posts in the monarchical administration. Only the consulate maintained its role as the splendid apex of an officeholding career.

Still less do we need to endorse Victor’s suggestion that senators did not further engage in politics because they “relished their absence from high office and feared for their riches” (oblectantur otio simulque divitiis pavent). Even so, the fact that Victor interprets the drop in political participation as symptom of moral decay highlights the threat posed to the collective honor of the senate by Gallienus’ measure. Like the adoption by emperors of new ideologies of divine kingship, so also the removal from key government posts posed a challenge to the self-esteem of the ancient ruling class of the Roman empire.

But after his appointment by Valentinian I as teacher of his son and co-emperor Gratian, Ausonius experienced a swift rise to high office. Under the reign of Valentinian I, he was quaestor sacri palatii, responsible for the drafting of imperial constitutions; in the early years of Gratian, in 377 and 378 he served as praetorian prefect (senior fiscal, judicial, and administrative official) of Gaul, and from 378 to 379, his area of administration was extended to encompass Italy and Africa as well.

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