Roman Timeline

THE KINGS AND THE REPUBLIC

BCE

753: Rome founded by Romulus. 

717: Disappearance of Romulus; Numa Pompilius created King. 

717-510: Six Kings of Rome: Numa, Tullius Hostilius, Ancus Marcius, Tarquinius Priscus, Servius Tullius and Tarquin the Proud. 

510: The rape of Lucretia. Brutus leads a revolution. The Republic is founded. 

510: Inconnu founded. 

449: The Laws of Rome are codified in the Twleve Tables. 

390: Gauls sack Rome. The dictator Camillus saves the city. 

c.300: Disappearance to Julius Senex. 

264-241: First Punic War: Rome clashes with Carthage over Sicily. 

218-202: Second Punic War: Hannibal invades Italy. He is finally defeated by Scipio Africanus and Fabius Maximus. 

149-146: Third Punic War: Carthage is finally destroyed, although it later becomes the site of a Roman colony. 

146: Greece becomes a Roman province. 

133: Tribunate of Tiberius Gracchus. 

123-121: Tribunate of Gaius Gracchus. 

112-105: Jugurthine War. 

109-101: Barbarian invasion of Italy; Marius manages to get himself elected Consul five times to deal with it. 

91-88: Social War: Italians revolt against Roman rule. they are defeated by the Romans. 

88-87: The First Civil War begins, between Marius and Sulla. 

87-65: Mithridatic Wars, fought against Mithridates IV, king of Pontus. 

84-81: Conclusion of the First Civil War; Sulla is victorious. 

81-79: Dictatorship of Sulla. 

78-72: War against Sertorius in Spain. 

73-71: Spartacus's slave revolt. 

63: The conspiracy of Catiline. 

60: First Triumvirate: Caesar, Pompey, Crassus. 

60-51: Caesar in Gaul. 

54: Crassus defeated by Parthians at the Battle of Carrhae. 

53: Battle between collegia ends with the death of Clodius and conflagration at the Senate House. Martial law declared. 

49-45: Civil War: Caesar is victorious over the senatorial forces, led by Pompey. The cowed Senate give Caesar the title of Dictator in Perpetuity. 

44: Privileges of Caesar, February 3rd. 

44: Caesar assassinated, March 15th. 

43: Second Triumvirate: Antony, Octavian, Lepidus. 

43-42: Caesar's assassins are defeated in battle at Phillipi by Antony and Octavian. 

33-31: Civil war: Octavian versus Antony and Cleopatra. 

27: The Senate gives Octavian the name Augustus. He is now the first Emperor of Rome. 

 

THE PRINCIPATE

CE

14: Death of Augustus. 

14-37: Reign of Tiberius. 

c. 27: Death of Christ. 

37-41: Reign of Gaius, called Caligula. 

41-54: Reign of Claudius. 

43: Conquest of Britain. 

54-68: Reign of Nero. 

c. 57: Vision of Longinus. 

60: Rebellion of Boudicca in Britain. 

64: Great Fire of Rome. First persecution of Christians. 

64: Near-destruction of the Inconnu in Rome during the Great Fire and its aftermath. 

69: Year of the Four Emperors: Galba, Otho, Vitellius and Vespasian. 

70: Siege of Jerusalem. 

69-79: Reign of Vespasian. 

79: Mt. Vesuvius erupts on 24th August, destroying the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. 

79-81: Reign of Titus. Completion of the Flavian Amphitheater (a.k.a. the "Colosseum"). 

81-96: Reign of Domitian. 

96-98: Reign of Nerva. 

98-117: Reign of Trajan. 

101-106: Trajan conquers Dacia. 

117-138: Reign of Hadrian. 

122: Hadrian builds a colossal wall across the width of northern Britain. 

136: Hadrian adopts Lucius Aelius as his deputy and successor. Hadrian keeps the title Augustus, and gives Aelius the title Caesar. Future Emperors will follow this system. Aelius dies six months before Hadrian, and Hadrian adopts Antoninus in Aelius's place. 

138-161: Reign of Antoninus Pius. 

142: Lollius Urbicus constructs the Antonine Wall across northern Britain in the Emperor's name. 

161-180: Reign of Marcus Aurelius, who is co-Emperor with Lucius Verus, son of Aelius, from 161 to 169. 

165-180: Antonine Plagues: Plague ravages Empire in waves, claiming the lives of Lucius Verus and Marcus Aurelius. Two thousand people die each day during the height of the plague. In total, the plague kills some 5,000,000 people. 

175: Avidius Cassius attempts to usurp the Imperial throne; he rules Egypt and Syria for two months. 

177: Marcus Aurelius appoints his son Commodus as Caesar. 

180-192: Reign of Commodus. 

193: Year of the Five Emperors: Pertinax, Didius Julianus, Clodius Albinus, Pescennius Niger and Septimus Severus. 

193-211: Reign of Septimus Severus. 

194: Death of Pescennius Niger. 

197: Death of Clodius Albinus. 

211-217: Reign of Caracalla, who murders his brother and co-Emperor Geta in 212. 

212: Constitutio Antoniniana: Caracalla extends Roman citizenship to every free man within the bounds of the Empire, mainly for the purposes of revenue — citizens pay more tax. 

217-218: Reign of Macrinus, Praetorian Prefect and assassin of Caracalla, alongside his son Diadumenian. 

218-222: Reign of Elagabalus. 

222-235: Reign of Severus Alexander. 

232: First Rite of the Lancea et Sanctum. 

 

THE AGE OF CRISIS

235-238: Reign of Maximinus the Thracian. 

238: Year of the Six Emperors: Maximinus; the elderly Senator Gordian I is co-Emperor with his son Gordian II for 21 days; he is followed by Balbinus, co-Emperor with Pupienus for 99 days. The Senate finally elects the boy Emperor Gordian III, son of Gordian II. 

238-244: Reign of Gordian III. he dies, aged 19, while at war against the Persians; no one knows exactly how. 

244-249: Reign of Philip the Arab, former Praetorian Prefect. 

249-251: Reign of Decius, with his son Herennius Etruscus. 

250: Julius Valens becomes pretender Emperor in Rome for a brief time during Decius's absence, before Valens's execution. 

250-251: Decian Persecution: Decius orders the systematic persecution of Christians. 

251-266: Plague of Cyprian: Disease again spreads across the Empire. 

251: Decius and his son die in battle against the Goths at the Battle of Abrittus, becoming the first Emperors to die in battle against a foreign enemy. Hostilian, the younger son of Decius, becomes Emperor in Rome but dies of the plague within weeks. 

251-253: Reign of Trebonianus Gallus, with his son Volusian. 

253: Reign of Aemilian the Berber as Emperor for three months. 

253-260: reign of Valerian, with his son Gallienus. 

257-260: Valerian orders the extermination or forced conversion of Christians in the Empire, the burning of Christian books and the confiscation of their property. 

258: Martydom of Cyprian, Biship of Carthage, Popes Sixtus and Stephen and Lawrence, deacon of Rome, among many others. 

259: Cyriades proclaims himself Emperor in the East, backed by the Persian King Shapur. Cyriades's own troops assassinate him and return to Rome. 

260: Valerian is captured by the Persians. His generals Quietus and Macrianus get elected by the troops as Emperors, and successfully lead teh troops out of Persia, only to face Gallienus, and lose. 

260: Usurpation: Ingenuus takes advantage of the unstable situation to have himself proclaimed Augustus, but dies in battle against legitimate Roman forces. Regalianus gets elected Emperor by the eastern provinces almost wholly by accident. He saves his people from the Sarmatians, and gets assassinated by his own side for his trouble. 

260-268: Solo reign of Gallienus. 

260-273: Gallic Empire: Gaul and Britain secede from the Empire for a time, under the Gallic Emperors: Postumus (260-268), Marius (268), Victorinus (268-270) and Tetricus (270-273). Tetricus deserts his own men and joins Aurelian in 273, rather than face  the Emperor in battle. Aurelian rewards Tetricus with a position of responsibility in the Emperor's court. Gaul and Britain rejoin the Empire within weeks. 

260-273: Palmyrene Empire: Eastern provinces Syria, Palestine, Egypt and Asia Minor break away under leadership of the Palmyrene Empress Zenobia. 

261: Gallienus issues his Edict of Toleration, ending the official persecution of Christians. There are rumors that his wife Salonina is secretly a Christian. 

262: Thascius Hostilinus founds the vampire bloodline later called Morbus. 

265: Celsus gets proclaimed Emperor against his will. he gets assassinated within seven days. 

268: Usurpation: Aureolus becomes Emperor in Milan. Gallienus lays siege to Milan, but is murdered by his own men. The conspiracy includes the future Emperors Aurelian and Claudius Gothicus, who finish the siege. Aureolus dies at the hands of the Praetorian Guard, deserted by his allies. Meanwhile, Laelianus tries to carve out a small empire of his own in Germany, but dies after about a month. 

268-270: Reign of Claudius Gothicus, who fights successfully against the barbarians, but dies of the plague. 

270: Reign of Quintillus, brother of Claudius. Quintillus is Emperor for 17 days. 

270-275: Reign of Aurelian, who decrees the Unconquered Sun as Rome's new state religon and reunifies the Empire. 

271: Usurpation: Septimius is proclaimed Emperor in Dalmatia. His own troops kill him. Domitianus rules for less than a week in Britain. Felicissimus leads an uprising of workers in the Imperial Mint in Rome, and kills 7,000 soldiers in the city before losing his life. 

274-275: Reign of Ulpia Severina, wife of Aurelian, who lays down power on the appointment of Tacitus. 

275-276: Reign of Tacitus. 

276: Reign of Flrian, son of Tacitus. He rules for 88 days. 

276-282: Reign of Probus. 

282-283: Reign of Carus. Carus is one of the very few Emperors not to be murdered or killed in battle — he is struck by lightning. 

283: Reign of Carinus and Numerian, the sons of Carus. 

 

THE DOMINATE

284: Diocletian defeats Carinus and Numerian in battle, and becomes Augustus and Dominus. 

286: Diocletian appoints Maximian as his fellow Augustus, with responsibility over teh Western half of the Empire; Diocletian concentrates on the East. 

286: Martyrdom of the Theban Legion; Miracle of Saint Daniel. 

293: First Tetrarchy: Diocletian and Maximian remain Augusti, but appoint Galerius and Constantius Chlorus as their respective Caesars. 

293-296: Usurpation: Britain secedes under Carausius and Allectus, before being regained by Constantius. 

303-311: Great Persecution: Diocletian and Galerius begin an orchestrated attempt to expunge Christianity completely from the Roman Empire, wth the tacit approval of Maximian. 

305: Second Tetrarchy: Diocletian and Maximian retire. Galerius and Constantius take on the title of Augustus, and choose Severus and Galerius's nephew Maximinus Daia as their Caesars. 

306: Constantius dies,; his troops acclaim his son Constantine as Augustus in York. Gelerius, in opposition, appoints Severus as the Western Augustus, ignoring Constantine's claim. Maxentius, the son of Maximian, declares himself Augustus in the West, and takes control of the city of Rome. 

307: Maximian leaves retirement to rule alongside his son. They defeat and kill Severus. 

308: Galerius appoints Licinius as a second Augustus in the East, and declares Maximinus Daia a third. Maximian tries to depose Maxentius, but the troops throw Maximian out of the city. 

310: Maximian commits suicide. 

311: Galerius dies; on is death-bed, he signs an Edict of Toleration, ending the Great Persecution. Maximinus and Licinius divide the Eastern Empire between themselves. 

312: Battle of Milvian Bridge: Constantine faces Maxentius, just outside Rome. Promted by a vision before the battle, Constantine orders his men to paint the Christian chi-rho (the "labarum") on their shields. Maxentius dies in the battle, caught under the collapsing bridge over the Tiber. 

313: Licinius defeats Maximinus Daia in battle. Maximinus dies of "despair, poison and divine justice." Constantine passes the Edict of Milan: he proclaims toleration for all religions, but Christianity becomes Constantine's religion of state. 

314: Constantine defeats Licinius in a civil war; the two Emperors make peace. Licinius marries Constantine's half-sister. 

324: Constantine defeats Licinius again. Constantine places Licinus under house arrest — and then has him murdered. Constantine's eldest son Crispus acquits himself so well that Constantine appoints him as his Caesar and heir apparent. 

325: First Great Ecumenical Council: Held at Nicaea, the council sees the formulation of the Nicene Creed, and the de facto foundation of the Roman Catholic church. 

326: Constantine has Crispus executed; someone strangles Constantine's wife (and Crispus's stepmother) Fausta shortly afterwards, with the Emperor's approval. No accounts say why. The Emperor has Crispus's name excised from all monuments and records. 

335: Consecration of the Black Abbey: Foundation of the Lancea et Sanctum. 

337: Death of Constantine. His three sons, Constantine II, Constantius II and Constans share the Empire: Constans and Constantine II hold the West, and Constantius the East. The three sons order the massacre of all their male relatives save their cousins Gallus and Julian, whom the Emperors consider to young to be a threat. 

340: Death of Constantine II in civil war against Constans. 

341: Constans bans pagan sacrifices. 

350: General Magnentius seizes power in the West; Constans goes on the run, but Magnentius catches and kills Constans in Gaul. 

351: Constantius appoints Gallus Caesar in the West to face Magnentius. 

353: Gallus defeats Magnentius. 

354: Gallus's reputation for cruelty concerns Constantius so much that the Emperor has the Caesar executed. 

355: Constantius appoints Julian Caesar in order to put down the rebellion of the general Silvanus. 

357: Battle of Strasbourg: Julian defeats the Alamanni, despite overwhelming odds. 

357: Constantius makes a state visit to Rome. 

358: An earthquake destroys the city of Nicomedia. 

360: Julian's troops, unwilling to fight under Constantius in Mesopotamia, declare Julian Augustus; civil war looms. 

361: Death of Constantius from a fever, before he can march against Julian. Julian becomes uncontested Emperor. 

362: Julian spends time in Antioch. He attempts to re-institute the rites of Apollo, with little success, and bans Christians from teaching law, philosophy or rhetoric. 

363: Julian's campaign in Persia meets with variable success. At the Battle of Maranga, which the Roman's win, Julian dies, pierced by a spear. No one knows where it came from. 

 

AFTER JULIAN

363-364: Reign of Jovian. He makes peace with the Persians, but dies of food poisoning on the way to his coronation. 

364-375: Reign of Valentinian I, alongside his brother Valens. 

365: An undersea earthquake rocks the Mediterranean on September 21st. The earthquake cretes a tidal wave, with engulfs Alexandria, killing 50,000 people. 

365-366: Rebellion of Procopius. 

367-368: "Barbarian Conspiracy": Picts, Saxons, Scots and Attacotti invade Britain simultaneously; Count Theodosius, the father of the later Emperor, drives them back. 

367-383: Reign of Gratian, last of the line of Constantine, Emperor in West. 

375: On the death of his father, Valentinian II, aged four, becomes co-Emperor in West. 

378: Goths invade the Eastern Empire. Valens dies at the battle of Adrianople. 

379-395: Theodosius the Great becomes Emperor in the East; he rules alongside Valentinian II. 

383-388: Magnus Maximus declares himself Emperor in Britain; he kills Gratian and seizes control of the Western Empire. Theodosius appoints his elder son Arcadius Caesar in the East. 

391: Theodosius outlaws pagan blood sacrifice and pagan rites. 

392: Valentinian II found hanged. He was possibly murdered by his pagan chamberlain Arbogast. 

392-394: Pagan general Eugenuis declared Emperor; defeated at Battle of the Frigidus, September 5th. 

393: Theodosius appoints his younger son Honorius as Caesar in the West. Honorius is only nine years old, and is placed under teh care of Stilicho the Vandal, who later becomes Regent. 

394-395: Theodosius unifies the Empire under a single Emperor for the last time. However, before he dies, Theodosius divides the Empire into two halves, East and West, the West under Honorius, the East under Arcadius. 

395-408: Reign of Arcadius in the East. 

395-423: Reign of Honorius in the West. 

400-402: A Gothic army led by Rome's former ally Alaric invades Italy. Stilicho defeats them on Easter Day 402. 

402-407: A series of attempted usurpations, rebellions and invasions weaken the Western Empire. 

407: The threat of civil war between East and West is averted only by Arcadius's death in 408. 

c.409: The Romans abandon Britain. Honorius writes to the Britons: Look to your own defense. 

410: Alaric sacks Rome. 

410-476: A series of weak or puppet Emperors hold the throne in the West. 

434-451: Attila the Hun stages a series of invasions in the Eastern and Western Empires. 

476: Odoacer, king of the Goths, deposes Romulus Augustus, last Emperor of Rome; the Byzantine Empire continues in the East. 

Roman Timeline

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