Barea Soranus

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Quintus Marcius Barea Soranus was a Roman Senator in the 1st century AD. Soranus was from the gens Marcia. He was the son of Quintus Marcius Barea, who was Suffect Consul in 26 and was twice Proconsul of the Africa Province. Barea during his time in Africa was based in Leptis Magna. Barea was an influential person in the African Province and had dedicated a temple in Leptis Magna, to the ‘Dei Augusti’ or ‘The August Gods’. Throughout the province, Barea has left various inscriptions.

His brother, Roman senator Quintus Marcius Barea Sura, was a friend to the future Roman Emperor Vespasian. His nieces were Marcia (mother of Ulpia Marciana and future Roman Emperor Trajan) and Marcia Furnilla (second wife of the future Roman Emperor Titus). Soranus was born and raised in Rome and while growing up he was tutored by Publius Egnatius Celer of Berytus.

His daughter Marcia Servilia Sorana (best known as "Servilia"), with whom he had a loving relationship, later married Roman Senator Annius Pollio. Soranus in 52 was suffect consul and (perhaps in 61) proconsul of Asia. The upright and considerate manner in which he treated the provincials won him their affection, but at the same time brought upon him the hatred of Roman Emperor Nero, who felt specially aggrieved because Soranus had refused to punish a city, which had defended the statues of its gods against the Imperial commissioners.[1] During the reign of Nero, Soranus was an elderly man.

Soranus was accused of intimacy with Gaius Rubellius Plautus (another person of Nero's hatred and his second cousin) and of endeavouring to obtain the goodwill of the provincials by treasonable intrigues. One of the chief witnesses against him was Publius Egnatius Celer. Soranus was condemned to death (in 65 or 66), and committed suicide. His daughter Servilia, who was charged with having consulted sorcerers (magi),[2] professedly in regard to her father's fate, but in reality with evil designs against the emperor, was involved in his downfall. The accuser, who was condemned to death in the reign of Roman Emperor Vespasian for his conduct on this occasion, is a standing example of ingratitude and treachery.[1][3]

Nerva–Antonine family tree[edit]

  • (1) = 1st spouse
  • (2) = 2nd spouse
  • (3) = 3rd spouse
  • Darker purple indicates Emperor of the Nerva-Antonine dynasty; lighter purple indicates designated imperial heir of said dynasty who never reigned
  • dashed lines indicate adoption; dotted lines indicate love affairs/unmarried relationships
  • small caps = posthumously deified (Augusti, Augustae, or other)

Q. Marcius Barea Soranus Q. Marcius Barea Sura Antonia Furnilla M. Cocceius Nerva Sergia Plautilla P. Aelius Hadrianus
(r. 79-81)
Marcia Furnilla Marcia Trajanus Pater Nerva
(r. 96–98)
Ulpia Aelius Hadrianus Marullinus
Julia Flavia Marciana C. Salonius Matidius Trajan
(r. 98–117)
Plotina P. Acilius Attianus P. Aelius Afer Paulina Major L. Julius Ursus Servianus
Lucius Mindius
Libo Rupilius Frugi
Matidia L. Vibius Sabinus
Antinous Hadrian (r. 117–138) Paulina
Matidia Minor Suetonius Sabina
Annius Verus
C. Fuscus Salinator I Julia Serviana Paulina
Rupilia Faustina Boionia Procilla Cn. Arrius Antoninus
L. Caesennius Paetus L. Ceionius Commodus Appia Severa C. Fuscus Salinator II
Arria Antonia Arria Fadilla T. Aurelius Fulvus
L. Caesennius Antoninus Lucius
Fundania Plautia Ignota Plautia C. Avidius
Antoninus Pius
(r. 138–161)
M. Annius Verus Domitia Lucilla Fundania M. Annius Libo FAUSTINA Lucius Aelius
Avidia Plautia
(r. 161–180)
FAUSTINA Minor C. Avidius Cassius Aurelia Fadilla LUCIUS VERUS
(r. 161–169)
Ceionia Fabia Plautius Quintillus Q. Servilius Pudens Ceionia Plautia
Cornificia Minor M. Petronius Sura COMMODUS
(r. 177–192)
Fadilla M. Annius Verus Caesar Ti. Claudius Pompeianus (2) Lucilla M. Plautius Quintillus Junius Licinius Balbus Servilia Ceionia
Petronius Antoninus L. Aurelius Agaclytus
Aurelia Sabina L. Antistius Burrus
Plautius Quintillus Plautia Servilla C. Furius Sabinus Timesitheus Antonia Gordiana Junius Licinius Balbus
Furia Sabina Tranquillina GORDIAN III
(r. 238-244)



  1. ^ a b Public Domain One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Soranus, Barea". Encyclopædia Britannica 25 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 430. 
  2. ^ The word magi often took on a derogatory meaning among the Romans, out of suspicion toward foreign forms of cult practice and divination; here it likely means "necromancers." Regarding Servilia, see Richard Gordon, "Imagining Greek and Roman Magic," in Witchcraft and Magic in Europe: Ancient Greece and Rome, edited by Bengt Ankarloo and Stuart Clark (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1999), pp. 213–214.
  3. ^ See, for example, Juvenal Satire 3. 116-118