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Open Access High-Ranking Military Officers: Septimius Severus Versus Gallienus

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High-Ranking Military Officers: Septimius Severus Versus Gallienus

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines the military officers, among whom both senators and equestrians played a role. To illustrate the developments in the power and status of military officers during the third century, the chapter analyzes and compares two cases: the set of high-ranking military officers under Septimius Severus and those operating under Gallienus. An analysis and comparison of these cases reveal not only a change in the character of the era, but also changes in the social rank of military officers and the declining value of senatorial rank in military contexts. Furthermore, it shows some strategic arrangements of the emperors to secure their power and to prevent the military from becoming a threat. Finally the chapter discusses the high-ranking officers who emerge from the literary and epigraphic evidence.

Keywords: equestrians; Gallienus; high-ranking military officers; senators; Septimius Severus; third century



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