Gaius Caristanius Fronto

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Gaius Caristanius Fronto was a Roman soldier and equites whom Vespasian promoted to the Roman Senate for his loyalty to the latter in the Year of Four Emperors (AD 69).[1] He was appointed to suffect consul in AD 90.

According to an inscription found at Antioch in Pisidia, which has been assumed to be his home, Caristanius had a typical equestrian career, first as a prefect of a cohort, followed by serving as tribunus angusticlavus, and lastly as prefect of an auxiliary alae raised from natives of the Bosporus.[2] It was after he was promoted to the Senate with first tribunician rank, then adlected with praetorian status -- thus excusing him from the trouble and expenses of the praetorship -- he was served as governor of Bithynia et Pontus in the 70s. Next Caristanius served as commander of the Legio IX Hispana; Birley believes this was c. 76-9, during the administrations of Sex. Julius Frontinus and Agricola.[3] Afterwards Caristanius served as governor of Lycia et Pamphylia during the joint reigns of Titus and Domitian, then became suffect consul. A fragmentary inscription found near Synnada led Cheesman to suggest he might have been Proconsul of Asia.[2]

Other inscriptions found at Antioch in Pisidia provide further personal information. Caristanius was the descendant of C. Caristanius Fronto Casesianus Julius, a Roman colonist settled there during the reign of Augustus. Married to Sergia L. f. Paulla, likely a daughter of the Proconsul of Cyprus, he is known to have two sons, Fronto and Paulinus. C. Caristanius Julianus, Proconsul of Achaea around 101, was either his younger brother or a cousin.[4]


  1. ^ So Anthony Birley believes. Birley, The Fasti of Roman Britain, (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1981), p. 234
  2. ^ a b G. L. Cheesman, "The Family of the Caristanii at Antioch in Pisidia", Journal of Roman Studies, 3 (1913), pp. 260f
  3. ^ Birley, Fasti, p. 234
  4. ^ Birley, Fasti, p. 234; Cheesman, "Family of the Caristanii", pp. 253-266