Friday, May 27, 2011

Trajan's Dacian Triumph

In ancient Rome, following the Julio-Claudian emperors and the chaotic year that followed the end of the first imperial dynasty, the Flavian dynasty ruled Rome. There were 3 Flavian emperors, the last being the unpopular Domitian. [See the first 12 Caesars.] After Domitian came the period described as the 5 Good Emperors. Trajan was the second of these. He was concerned with the Danube region where the local king, Decebalus, had been causing trouble for Rome from the time of Domitian.

Trajan, wishing to put an end to the aggravation, increased the legions to 30, their largest number to date. He marched his army across the Danube where King Decebalus swore his allegiance, but then reneged, so Trajan marched back in in 106. After Decebalus committed suicide, Trajan made Dacia a province, enjoyed a great new influx of wealth from Dacian mines, and celebrated a fabulous triumph in 107 lasting 123 days. A column was built visually depicted Trajan's victory over the Dacians.

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