Wednesday, January 07, 2004

Laelianus - Roman Emperor

I was reading David Meadow's very interesting blog rogueclassicism and noticed a reference to the UNRV website. This website was initially established as a resource for Roma Victa gamers. As David points out, it has an extensive index of Roman legions from the time of Julius Caesar to the 4th Century C.E. including their foundation, their bases, and battles and events in which they were involved. I was also intrigued by its Emperor index that covered a number of relatively unknown emperors from the 3rd – 6th centuries C.E. including Ulpius Cornelius Laelianus (269 C.E.).

"Laelianus shared the same nomen as a prominent Spanish noble family, the Ulpii, that included Trajan among its members, and may have been a relative. This is supported by the strong allusion to Spain on an aureus he struck, which featured the design of Hispania reclining with a rabbit to her side. If he indeed was a relative, this may be the reason Spain allied itself with Claudius II, after the death of Postumus, seemingly without a struggle.
Laeilianus was an usurper against Postumus, himself another usurper, who was unable to rout the incumbent when their forces met in battle. Laelianus thus had a tenure lasting from near the beginning of the year 269 through no later than that summer. Although his exact position is unknown, he is believed to have been a senior officer under Postumus. Laelianus represented a strong danger to Postumus because he was believed to be governor of Germania Superior and therefore had the command of two legions. (Legio XXII Primigenia, Legio VIII Augusta at Argentorate -Strasbourg-)."
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