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Der Reflex Der Selbstdarstellung Der Valentinianischen Dynastie Bei Ammianus Marcellinus Und Den Kirchenhistorikern

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Chapter Summary

The representation of the Valentinian dynasty differs in some regards from what is generally known about late antique emperors. This chapter argues that certain elements are reflected in Ammianus Marcellinus and, to a lesser degree, in the church historians. The first example is the accession of Valentinian and Valens to the throne. Ammianus depicts Valentinian as a hesitant candidate whose elevation is by no means safe, thereby turning his description into an ironic commentary of the proceedings. Secondly, both an important and unusual element of Valentinian representation was the idea that an emperor should possess some degree of experience of everyday life. Ammianus' insistence on the low origin and lack of experience in Valens and Valentinian is not only an expression of his traditionalist attitude, but also an answer to this facet of imperial representation.

Keywords: traditionalist attitude; Valentinian dynasty; Ammianus Marcellinus; church historians



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