Aureus of Aurelian.jpg
Emperor of the Roman Empire
ReignSeptember 270 – September or October 275
Born9 September 214 or 215
Unclear location.[1] Possibly Serdica (present-day Sofia, Bulgaria) or Sirmium (present-day Sremska Mitrovica, Serbia)
Died25 September or October 275
Caenophrurium, Thrace (present-day Turkey)
SpouseUlpia Severina
Full name
Lucius Domitius Aurelianus
Regnal name
Imperator Caesar Lucius Domitius Aurelianus Augustus
MotherFreedwoman of the clan Aurelius and Priestess of Sol Invictus in her native village.
[2] Bust of a Roman Emperor usually thought of as a bust of Claudius II, however there is a possibility that this bust is actually the bust of Aurelian, since the Roman who buried this would have probably buried a statue of Aurelian along with Claudius II and the other busts found in the Brescia temple. Features of the statue do match the face of Aurelian depicted on coins.

Aurelian (Latin: Lucius Domitius Aurelianus Augustus;[a] 9 September 214 or 215 – September or October 275) was Roman Emperor from 270 to 275. Born in humble circumstances, he rose through the military ranks to become emperor. During his reign, he defeated the Alamanni after a devastating war. He also defeated the Goths, Vandals, Juthungi, Sarmatians, and Carpi. Aurelian restored the Empire's eastern provinces after his conquest of the Palmyrene Empire in 273. The following year he conquered the Gallic Empire in the west, reuniting the Empire in its entirety. He was also responsible for the construction of the Aurelian Walls in Rome, and the abandonment of the province of Dacia.

His successes were instrumental in ending the Roman Empire's Crisis of the Third Century, earning him the title Restitutor Orbis or "Restorer of the World". Although Domitian was the first emperor who had demanded to be officially hailed as dominus et deus (master and god), these titles never occurred in written form on official documents until the reign of Aurelian.[3]

Early life

Aurelian was born on 9 September, most likely in 214 AD, although 215 AD is also possible.[4] The ancient sources do not agree on his place of birth, although he was generally accepted as being a native of Illyricum but, another common belief was that he was born in Greece. According to the author of the Historia Augusta, "Aurelian was born of a humble family, at Sirmium according to most writers, but in Dacia Ripensis according to some. I remember, moreover, having read one author who declared that he was born in Moesia".[5][6] The province of Dacia Ripensis was actually created in Moesia by Aurelian as Emperor when he abandoned the old trans-Danubian territory of Dacia. The Roman historian Eutropius also opts for the area that later became Dacia ripensis.[7] The academic consensus is that he was of humble birth and that his father was a peasant-farmer who took his Roman nomen from his landlord, a senator of the clan Aurelius.[8] Saunders suggests that his family might in fact have been of Roman settler origin and of much higher social status; however, his suggestion has not been taken up by his more recent academic colleagues such as Southern and Watson.

Using the evidence of the ancient sources, it was at one time suggested that Aurelian's mother was a freedwoman of a member of the clan Aurelius and that she herself was a priestess of the Sun-God in her native village. These two propositions, together with the tradition that the clan Aurelius had been entrusted with the maintenance of that deity's cult in Rome, inspired the notion that this could explain the devotion to the sun-god that Aurelian was to manifest as Emperor - see below. However, it seems that this pleasant extrapolation of dubious facts is now generally accepted as being no more than just that.[9]

Other Languages
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العربية: أوريليان
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تۆرکجه: اورلیان
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беларуская: Аўрэліян
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Ελληνικά: Αυρηλιανός
español: Aureliano
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עברית: אורליאנוס
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қазақша: Аврелиан
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latviešu: Aureliāns
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монгол: Аврелиан
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norsk: Aurelianus
oʻzbekcha/ўзбекча: Avrelian
português: Aureliano
română: Aurelian
русский: Аврелиан
Scots: Aurelian
shqip: Aureliani
sicilianu: Aurilianu
Simple English: Aurelian
slovenčina: Aurelianus
slovenščina: Avrelijan
српски / srpski: Аурелијан
srpskohrvatski / српскохрватски: Aurelijan
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粵語: 奧勒良
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中文: 奥勒良