Talk:Roman emperor

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List of emperors[edit]

As can be seen at Talk:List of Roman Emperors, my extremely complicated listing of Roman Emperors is far from a finished or satisfactory project. I would greatly appreciate any input as to how it ought to be refined or made more gooder. Pubicus

Focus on dynastic/non-dynastic changes[edit]

As I mentioned elsewhere, I think it would be an amazing idea for this page's list of the Emperors to focus on dynastic and non-dynastic changes (so as to justify its separate listing of the Emperors). I put together an example of how this might be done with the Julio-Claudians as an example:

Julio-Claudian Emperors:
Dynastic Relationships:
Caesar Augustus's first wife Livia Drusilla (subsequently "Iulia Augusta") had previously borne two children by her first husband, Tiberius Claudius Nero: Tiberus and Drusus. Tiberius's second wife was Iulia, Marcus Agrippa's widow (his first wife had been Vipsania, Agrippa's daughter by his first marriage); Caesar Augustus adopted Tiberius on June 26, 4, whereupon Tiberius himself adopted his brother Drusus's son by Marcus Antonius's daughter, Germanicus Iulius Caesar. Germanicus married Vipsania Agrippina, Agrippa's daughter by Iulia and Tiberius's stepdaughter, and had by her one surviving son, Gaius "Caligula" ("Bootkins"), and a daughter, Iulia Agrippina, whose second husband was Germanicus's brother by blood, Claudius (she was his first wife); Agrippina had already borne a son (Lucius) by her first husband, Gnaeus Domitius Ahenobarbus. Claudius adopted Lucius under the name Nero in 40; Nero married Claudius's daughter Octavia in 53.

What does everyone think about using this as a general model for the article's second part? It will of course take some time to modify the whole article, and will necessarily make the article somewhat lengthier, but I think it would go a long way toward demonstrating the complicated (dare I say, "byzantine"?) often-familial personality of the Roman Emperor's succession. Comments? Publius

It sounds an interesting idea. But speaking of "byzantine", the familial connections get more complicated from the Tetrarchy and till Anastasius I. Any ideas how to cover the following connections (from a modern Greek encyclopedia)?:

to Julian and great-great-uncle by marriage to Gratian.

As you can see those Emperors are connected to each other but far from consitute a single Royal House. Any ideas of how to indicate this in the article? User:Dimadick

Yes, I've been working on upgrading the whole article to my new proposed format, and the Tetrarchy and beyond is definitely a snag. I've been thinking that perhaps we ought to delineate the later houses into separate lines based on Constantinian, Valentinian, Theodosian, and Leonine lines, and add clarification as to how the lines are related. Something along the following lines:
Constantius I's first wife St. Helena bore him a son, Constantinus I, whose second wife Fausta (sister of Maxentius and daughter of Maximian by Eutropia, mother of Constantius's second wife Theodora) bore him three sons (Constantinus II, Constantius II, and Constans I) and two daughters (Constantia and Helena). Constantius II's daughter Constantia married Gratianus (see below), son of Valentinianus I (see below), while Helena married her half-cousin, Julianus "the Apostate".

What do you think? (As it happens, I'm glad someone was amused by my "byzantine" pun.) Publius 18:13, 27 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Hmmm... pretty good but some connections of lesser significance should perhaps be clarified to avoid confusion. How about:

Constantius I was married twice. First to St. Helena and then to Theodora, daughter to Maximian by Eutropia and sister of Maxentius. He had a single son by the former known as Constantinus I and by the later two more sons (Dalmatius and Julius Constantius) and two daughters (Eutropia and Constantia). Constantine also married twice. First to Minervina and then to Fausta, a sister of his step-mother. The former was mother to Caesar Crispus and the later to three sons (Constantinus II, Constantius II, and Constans I) and two daughters (Constantia and Helena). Julius Constantius in turn became father to two sons: Caesar Gallus and Julian. Their sister Constantia was wife to Licinius. Constantia the younger was wife to Gallus and Helena to Julian. An even younger Constantia, daughter to Constantius II later became consort to Gratianus (see below), son of Valentinianus I (see below).

I am in turn glad to see someone trying to clarify the various conceptions and misconceptions about the Roman and "Byzantine" Emperors. User:Dimadick

What is your opinion of the current revisions (up to but not including Theodosius and his successors)? I'm not entirely satisfied with the Tetrarchical and Constantinian sections, but do you feel that they adequately convey what was happening with the Imperial dignity at the time? Or is more clarification necessary for the average reader? Publius 13:53, 14 Jan 2004 (UTC)

Well, it's finally finished. I have completed the systematic upgrade of the article, including dynastic relationships and other topical information (like economic backgrounds and increasingly non-Italian origins of the Emperors), but I'm afraid I won't be around to discuss further improvements. I can only hope that the article is informative, and that others enjoy reading it as much as I have enjoyed writing it. Publius 06:58, 24 Jan 2004 (UTC)


This page is really, really long (67kb right now; over twice the recommended maximum length). Would anyone object to splitting it up? Four sub-articles seem rather obvious to me:

  • Roman Emperor (Principate)
  • Roman Emperor (Crisis of the Third Century)
  • Roman Emperor (Dominate)
  • Roman Emperor (Late Empire)

What does everyone else think?Binabik80 20:04, 5 Mar 2005 (UTC)

As a general rule, whenever splitting away material, it's necessary to leave a condensed version of it at the parent article, with an indented note in italics telling the reader where to find the more complete material. As long as this is done, there's little harm in splitting. --Wetman 21:58, 5 Mar 2005 (UTC)
See Talk:Roman Empire#Splitting up Roman Empire too for my answer.--Hippalus 09:33, Mar 12, 2005 (UTC)

The Holy Roman Empire[edit]

Are we really going to insinuate that the HRE was a legitimate continuation of the actual Empire, and not merely an imitator? -Chris5369 18:15, 20 Apr 2005

I think the edit you've made ("as a separate instution") sums it up sufficiently. Binabik80 23:05, 20 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Touche. Just didn't want to start an ideological war again... -Chris5369 04:01, 21 Apr 2005

The idea that it is treated by historians as a separate institution might be okay to say. But as it stood it just mucked up the meaning of an already existing sentence, which was saying that historians called them Holy Roman Emperors. At any rate, it seems POV to say that the HRE was not a legitimate continuation of the actual empire - it considered itself to be, certainly. But something talking a bit more about how to distinguish the two might be in order. john k 03:11, 21 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I've had a go at it while you've been writing this message; what do you think? Saying that the HRE wasn't a legitimate continuation might verge on POV, but I don't think there should be a problem with saying that modern historians don't view it as such. I mean, they don't, do they? Binabik80 03:18, 21 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Is it POV? The only sources that seem to agree with the HRE continuation theory are the occasional German historians. Should we list the Sultans? The Tsars? To even include them, sounds POV. -Chris5369 00:41, 22 Apr 2005

I somewhat disagree with the statement that the HRE was continued through the Austrian (1806-1867) and Austro-Hungarian (1867-1918) Empires. Francis explicitly laid down the HR crown in 1806, having *previously* created the Austrian Emperorship for himself (1804), i.e. carryign two imperial titles in the period 1804-1806. Therefore, the Austrian/Austro-Hungarian Emperorship is clearly not a continuation of the HRE. Neither, by the way, is the German Empire of 1871-1918, where the title "German Emperor" was merely a name for the President of the Federation of German states within the Reich. Thus, I have deleted the passage in the article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:42, 31 May 2008 (UTC)


Is 'determinating' a word? Would 'determinator' be better? --darklilac 20:14, 6 September 2006 (UTC)

Unsourced statements[edit]

There are many statements in the article which quote no sources and thus cannot be verified. Can anyone provide adequate references for them? --Nehwyn 15:10, 16 November 2006 (UTC)

In that case use the {{unreferenced}} tag, not the {{OR}} one.--Panarjedde 17:06, 16 November 2006 (UTC)
I think there are too many "citation needed" tags in this article, especially as we have a similar tag at the head of the article. Some are also in awkward spots that makes the article hard to read. I'm removing some. Master z0b (talk) 00:58, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

Poisoned emperors[edit]

Half the Roman emperors are regularly claimed to have been "poisoned", some people say, but this article names onely several potential poison victims, why?, and who are the emperors often cited as being poisoned?

Yes, who are they? I'd never heard that "half the Roman emperors are regularly claimed to have been poisoned" before! FilipeS (talk) 13:39, 12 January 2008 (UTC)
I've made a personal count (OR! Don't use) from an oldish history book, giving a natural death frequency not more than 10%, the rest killed in any way, most usually murdered, but sometimes killed in war. I believe the future prospects of any Roman Emperor was as bad as high nazi functionary before 1945 which seems to be an equally dangerous profession. Said: Rursus 05:01, 9 June 2008 (UTC)
I.e. much much worse than vulcanologist, a decidedly dangerous research profession. Said: Rursus 05:03, 9 June 2008 (UTC)


RE: imperator as exclusive use of emperor and the basis of imperial power

I think it has to be mentioned that the use of the titles 'imperator' as well as 'caesar' both evolved sgnificantly over the period of the eraly empire. For example, under Tiberius, it was common to refer to Germanicus as 'Caesar' as in Tacitus' Annals in describing Germanicus German campaigns. Tacitus also mentions here Germanicus being saluted as 'imperator' by his troops. Something which did not apparently bother Tiberius greatly. Contrast to later, even around AD 69.

I would also say that "what makes an emperor, emperor", is in fact this title. For example, Vespasian dated his imperial rule from the time he was saluted as Imperator by his troops in the East (July 69) not his formal accession after the defeat of Vitellius. Second the possession of this title meant command of the Army, the ultimate guarantor of imperial power. (Tacitus' "Secret of the Empire").

Also at no point does the page mention anywhere the concept of "imperial provinces" commanded by men the Emperor appoints (and not the Senate). Another key concept which demarks both the powers and the office of Emperor.


I have replaced the first two paragraphs here giving the definition and derivation of imperator. But, after saving, only part of my second paragraph appears and to my dismay the rest of the page content has vanished. However, if I click edit again all my alteration appears together with the remainder. Could someone please check this for me and advise me what I am doing wrong? Many thanks.

Since writing that I seem to have solved it by removing this tag (Please click Edit because it is clipping the text again here): <ref name="OCD">, the identical tag (pasted) which I had used earlier in the text.

Move to "Roman emperor"[edit]

Why is the second word of this article capitalized? Spa toss 21:33, 20 August 2007 (UTC)

Because Emperor is a title. (Romanorum Imperator (talk) 18:52, 19 May 2008 (UTC))
So capitalize it when it is being used as part of a title - and not otherwise. It's not a proper noun, after all. By way of analogy, we write "Pope John", but "pope" is not capitalized generally. WolfmanSF (talk) 17:32, 2 August 2009 (UTC)

It clearly should NOT be capitalized, and ought to be fixed. It's like writing 'He was an English King' instead of the correct 'He was an English king'. Alpheus (talk) 00:09, 16 October 2009 (UTC)

Merger with Imperator[edit]

Strongly disagree. The title Imperator has meanings separate from Roman Emperor. "Imperator" in its original form means something along the lines of "great commander," or "commander of the army," or terms along those lines to suggest a great general. As I understand it, Imperator came to be associated with "emperor" after only lengthy precedent in the matter, in which the original(and very important) meaning of the word was lost.

P.S. - How long has that been there? There seems to have been no discussion on it. (talk) 03:40, 16 August 2008 (UTC)

Disagree. The title of the Roman Emperor was Basielues for the greatest part of the Roman Empire's life. If it should be merged to anything it should be Basileus but that would exclude the period when the title was in fact Imperator so it is also inadvisable.--Xenovatis (talk) 14:30, 28 June 2009 (UTC)

"First Roman Emperor"[edit]

I'm wondering if this section is contradicting itself. At one point it says: "However, Julius Caesar, unlike those after him,[citation needed] did so without the Senate's vote and approval" Emphasis on -without-. A bit later it says: "again he did not gain these positions without the majority of a vote by the people and senate" -> So, which is it? With or without approval? First sentence suggests without, second sentence with. (I'm no expert on the matter, but I always thought he did all that he did with approval) Vince (talk) 23:40, 16 July 2009 (UTC)


>> His "restoration" of powers to the Senate and the people of Rome was a demonstration of his auctoritas and pious respect for tradition. godly. <<

Whatever this read before, "godly" should either be deleted or made a sentence. —Preceding unsigned comment added by TaoQiBao (talkcontribs) 10:36, 24 January 2010 (UTC)

Some article issues[edit]

I removed the veritable rash of tags requesting citation, particularly in the early sections of the article - please note that some have been embedded here for three years - because they served no purpose (QED) other than making the text even harder to read. I replaced them all with a general header. The entire article lacks appropriate sources. Currently, it provides two dictionary definitions (handy, but not really citation), one reference to Dio and an offsite link to Constantine Paleologus. My point here is that the text as a whole offers little or no differentiation between primary, secondary and tertiary sources or sources of argument, opinion (scholarly or otherwise) and critical interpretation. Some parts are more lucid than others - the lede is pretty clear - but overall, the article rambles wordily, and I rapidly got lost in it. I've clarified and simplified a tad but only in subject material I know to be broadly uncontentious and available from virtually any well-written general history of the period.

Regarding sources - otherwise expressed as "what sources?" - a great deal of this article seems based on the online encyclopedic essay series to be found at De Imperatoribus Romanis. I've not gone through this in any great detail, but DomitianDiocletian's so-called Dominate as an "outright oriental monarchy" stands out in particular as a dubious or at least contestable appraisal, sourced from the online de Imperatoribus article. I believe - and I'm happy to be corrected if wrong - that we should not uncritically use other Encyclopedias as building blocks for this one. Haploidavey (talk) 16:04, 11 January 2010 (UTC)

Cut part in intro, re "Emperor" as follows - "The first to bear that title was Michael I Rhangabes in the early 9th century, who was styled Basileus Rhomaiôn, "Emperor of the Romans"—if appreciating that by that time the meaning of "Basileus" had changed from "Sovereign" to "Emperor")". Needs placing chronologically, with citation; "meaning" can be a tricksy thing. Haploidavey (talk) 20:25, 11 January 2010 (UTC)

Republican or monarchy?[edit]

I think it is worth discussing whether we should consider the roman emperors monarchs or not. It seems to me that if you describe the emperors as a monarchy, you need to describe a lot of other people as monarchs who aren't normally considered monarchs- such as many presidents-for-life and dictators in many republics in history. In what sense are we using the word "monarchy"? (talk) 16:07, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

The difference between dictators and monarchs boils down to customary designation and use of specific titles. It's not possible to define underlying substantive criteria. The Duvaliers of Haiti would probably fulfil any definition of monarchy except the lack of a monarchical title. The Kings of Poland prior to the third partition fulfil any definition of (elected) president-for-life except the title. The title by which they are now known "Emperor", is enough to convey the sense of monarchy. In reality, historians tend to refer to the development of monarchical trappings in the principate until it becomes a fully-fledged monarchy in the Dominate. I understand where you're coming from, after all what substantively was the difference between Julius Caesar as Dictator in the Republic, and Augustus as Princeps, Diocletian as Dominus and Heraclius as Basileus in the Empire? Only that by convention the Republican era ended with Augustus and thereafter there was an Imperial era, the latter monarchical the former non-monarchical. And "convention" (i.e. simply reflecting the sources) is what WP is supposed to be about, not coming up with our own analysis (wich is called WP:OR).
You've made the lead inaccurate in describing the Empire after Augustus. It was not in a stasis and republic trappings were soon dropped. The statement that the emperors "were emphatically not royal monarchs, but leaders of a nominal republic" is just plain wrong when applied to Constantine or Justinian for instance, but you could get away with describing Augustus and especially Tiberius in that way. It's a gross oversimplification and you should revert it. I hope this doesn't turn into yet another silly Wiki terminology dispute that historians in the outside world just aren't that bothered about. DeCausa (talk) 17:22, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
I assume that most people understand "monarchy" to clearly mean a political system where the highest political position is claimed, acquired and legitimised by its inheritance as a right of birth; I also assume most people find this very distinct from a non-monarchical system where the leader claims to be leader on merit though selection or acclamation. I apologize if this seeems too terminological.
Of the four you mention in your second paragraph, i.e. Caesar, Augustus, Diocletian, and Heraclius, not one was the natural son of an Emperor. Of the three more you then mention in your third paragraph, i.e. Constantine, Justinian and Tiberius, not one was the natural son of an Emperor. Even Emperors who were descended from Emperors still claimed to be Emperor on merit and popular acclaim, not inheritance.
(Regarding our times, I dont think Jean-Claude Duvalier ever claimed inheritance was the basis of his legitimacy for ruling Haiti, and even claimed to want to avoid dynastic rule, whereas Elizabeth II is legitimately entitled to be queen because her father was king, and her son and grandson are by inheritance legitimately entitled to the monarchy after her.)
However if the convention is that the emperors were a monarchy, then please direct me to the academic sources, I was unaware of this but i always like to learn. Academic sources of which I am currently aware seem to say the opposite, but perhaps i must read them more carefully! I havent made the lead innaccurate, but i may have rephrased existing innaccuracies, if that is what there are: For example the lead has, for at least six months, said "Since the Roman Republic was constituted on an profoundly non-royalist basis, Rome theoretically remained a republic" etc. etc. (talk) 16:14, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
There have been several monarchies which weren't hereditary. I mentioned Poland, but also the Holy Roman Empire and, many of the early Germanic monarchies weren't strictly hereditary in the sense that the King was elected from the Royal House. Arguably the modern UAE is anon-hereditary monarchy. As for sources, there are many. Here's some random examples: “The Emperor …was seen as a divinely sanctioned monarch”, “Diocletion was still monarch of the entire empire”, “Augustus was not only the princeps, the first man among many, but also a monarch,”, and "Tiberius…was a monarch". DeCausa (talk) 19:03, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
The UAE is a monarchy in the sense that it is a federation of hereditary absolute monarchies, and all power belongs to: 1) the Council consisting of those Monarchs, and 2) the President, who can only be one of those Monarchs. YOMAL SIDOROFF-BIARMSKII (talk) 11:35, 28 July 2013 (UTC)
Additionally, it's not true that it wasn't hereditary. It was a mixture of heredity and election by the army. There were plenty of dynasties: Julio-Claudian dynasty, Flavian dynasty, Constantinian dynasty, House of Theodosius, Antonine etc. The article needs to reflect the historical consensus that Augustus maintained the pretence that it wasn't a monarchy, but that pretence was soon dropped until in the 3rd century it was an "orientalized" monarchy under Diocletian. I've amended the 2nd para of the lead (with sources) to reflect this. DeCausa (talk) 08:19, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
Your edits are interesting, I shall look at them carefully!
Your sources are good, and they certainly do use the term "monarch". I think the problem is I was confusing monarchy with kings, which is not unreasonable but in this case confusing. My strong impression is that the Emperors tried hard to contrast themselves with "kings" i.e. Roman kings like Tarquinius Superbus etc. and oriental "kings"/"despots". Perhaps instead of "emphatically not royal monarchs" i should have written "emphatically not kings".
However once the idea of "not monarchs" has been replaced with the (here different) idea of "not kings" (at least for the first 300 years, according to your source), do you have further sources regarding the formal abandonment of the idea that Rome was (in theory) a republic (is this what you are saying?). I would be as happy with the statement that "the Republican institutional framework (senate, consuls, magistracies etc.) was preserved" or words to that effect. The lead already asserted (before i edited) that it still a nominal republic, which i have (as yet!) no reason to disbelieve. (talk) 15:50, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
With regard to your last para, I feel that you are falling into an anachronistic trap. Concepts such as what is "official" or not official in antiquity are blurred. It's not as though, as with modern states, there is a written constitution which declares it to be a republic etc. And indeed our concept of what is a "republic" is not exactly the same as the Romans. There won't be a "formal" abandonment of the Republic. But surely it's not disputed that historians conventially end the Republic at 27BC. If you put "History of the Roman Republic" in google books you get 14,800 titles by that name. I checked through several pages of hits with previews and found none that didn't end with Augustus. Here's a good example. Of course it is arguably an over-simplification (like the fall of the Roman Empire in the West happened in 476AD) but that is the convention, and we should reflect it. We're not here to do original research.
As far as the changes you've made are concerned, I think the statement "Only after three hundred years of Emperors, at the time of Diocletian, was the idea that the Emperor was not a "monarch" dropped" is wrong. The source doesn't say that. Diocletian was at the end of a process that began with Augustus, when the last fig-leaves of the Republic were dropped. I don't think there was any doubt from Tiberius on that the Emperors were monarchs. And that's what the source in footnote 2 says. DeCausa (talk) 11:30, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
I've just seen this discussion on when the Republic ended by Harriet Flower in The Cambridge Companion to the Roman Republic. As you can see, there are a variety of possiblities, but none that include going into the Imperial era. DeCausa (talk) 13:23, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
Regarding the statement you think wrong, what distinction are you trying to make between "Only after three hundred years... was the idea that the Emperor was not a "monarch" dropped" [me] and "the last fig-leaves of the Republic were dropped" [you]?? They seem pretty similar to me. The source says "His position was that of a monarch. After three centuries the last shreds of traditional embarrassment about monarchy were disgorged." That seems to me to mean to very strongly imply that prior to this time, traditional embarrassment about monarchy had not been dropped/disgorged. (talk) 13:38, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
You've changed what's "dropped"! The source says "last shreds of embarrassment" about it being a monarchy. You've said "the idea the Emperor wasn't a monarch". At best it's ovestating it, but actually its two different things. One is the actual status, the other is merely reaction to that status. (By the way, normal WP practice is to indent your post - it makes the thread easier to read: see Help:Using talk pages#Indentation) DeCausa (talk) 14:29, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
I think neither is about the actual status, both regard the principle. After three-hundred years, the principle that the Emperor wasn't a monarch was dropped. In any case, the important point, i think, is that the distinction with kings was maintained.
On another point, are you not confusing the period (and accompanying political situation) known, by convention and for convenience, as the republic, and the institution? "Roman Republic" is indeed used to refer to a specific period when specific principles applied, but the "institution" largely continued. The political situation changed enough to consider that a new historical period had begun. If I search for "Roman Republic", I would hope and expect to receive information on the period known by convention as the Roman Republic, but all this that doesnt mean that the institution of the Republic ceased to exist. Chile is a presidential republic, but by convention and for convenience, the term "Presidential Republic" refers (in Chilean history) to a specific period of Chilean history. This in no way stops Chile being a presidential republic today. (talk) 16:20, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
Of course, the period and the institutional situation can both be contrasted with a third thing, the claims of the emperors. (talk) 16:35, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
I think your last change makes it about right. I suspect that although the choice of Emperor (actually princeps, Augustus, imperator etc), not king, was originally because of traditional repugnance for the royal title, the later reason for maintaining it morphed into a sense that Emperors were greater than kings. I haven't looked for sources to support this though. DeCausa (talk) 10:15, 6 August 2011 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

FYI: User:JCScaliger has been indef blocked as a sockpuppet of User:Pmanderson (blocked for another year for abusive sockpuppetry).
The following discussion is an archived discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: moved. ErikHaugen (talk | contribs) 20:08, 26 November 2011 (UTC)

Roman EmperorRoman emperor

Per WP:MOSCAPS ("Wikipedia avoids unnecessary capitalization") and WP:TITLE, this is a generic, common term, not a propriety or commercial term, so the article title should be downcased. Lowercase will match the formatting of related article titles. Tony (talk) 11:49, 19 November 2011 (UTC)

  • Oppose. Not necessary nor desirable. Emperor is a specific title; that we require separate articles on Roman, Byzantine, Serbian, and Mexican Emperors is a convenience, not a requirement. JCScaliger (talk) 23:21, 19 November 2011 (UTC)
  • Support. "Emperor" is not specific enough. It not an exclusively Roman title, but used widely to refer to other offices (German emperor, Russian emperor, Ottoman emperor, Japanese emperor, etc.). It has lost its specificity and has become so generic now to mean "ruler over a lot of stuff", rather than specifically related to ancient Rome (which is why the "Roman" specification seems necessary qualifier for an article on Roman emperors unlike, say, in an article on Roman bishops, which is merely "Pope" rather than "Roman pope".) Moreover, even during the Roman imperial period, multiple emperors were common, and there are various "ranks" of emperor (e.g. Augustus "higher" than a Caesar). It is common usage to downcase insufficiently specific titles, particularly when there is an demonym attached e.g. "French king", rather than "French King". Walrasiad (talk) 23:49, 19 November 2011 (UTC)
  • Support – emperor is not a proper name, and neither is Roman emperor. For a specific one, capitalize, as in "the Roman Emperor Constantine." Dicklyon (talk) 14:32, 20 November 2011 (UTC)
  • Support. It is just a designation that could be applied to a number of rulers. See consistent use with lower case at the nearest relevant guideline page: Wikipedia:Naming conventions (ancient Romans). NoeticaTea? 00:00, 23 November 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

Last emperor to rule from Rome?[edit]

It occurred to me to wonder who was the last Roman emperor to rule in Rome itself; you'd think this would be easy to find out, but it's not. As far as I can tell from the biographies of the emperors of this period, Carinus was the last to rule from the city of Rome; does anyone know if this is correct? If so, it should be mentioned in the article as a fairly significant fact; note that the article currently includes the statement "Constantine XI was the last emperor to rule from Constantinople." (I originally posted this in Talk:Carinus, but I have since realized that nobody is ever likely to see it there.) Languagehat (talk) 15:22, 6 March 2015 (UTC)

The last West-Roman Emperor to rule in Rome would probably have been Honorius. He was the one who moved the capitol of the West-Roman Empire to Ravenna. He and his successors didn't rule IN Rome but they continued to rule OVER Rome. Gerard von Hebel (talk) 15:58, 6 March 2015 (UTC)
According to his article, "At first Honorius based his capital in Milan, but when the Visigoths under King Alaric I entered Italy in 401 he moved his capital to the coastal city of Ravenna"; i.e., he did not rule from Rome. As far as I can tell, none of the emperors ruled from Rome after Diocletian established the multiple-capital system; the Western emperors ruled from Milan and later Ravenna. And of course "He and his successors didn't rule IN Rome but they continued to rule OVER Rome"; that goes without saying. I'm interested in who was the last to rule IN Rome. Languagehat (talk) 22:16, 6 March 2015 (UTC)

It seems I was wrong about this; Andrew Gillett, in "Rome, Ravenna and the Last Western Emperors" (Papers of the British School at Rome 69 [2001], pp. 131-167) has done a thorough study of the imperial court in the fifth century and concluded "that the western imperial court occupied Rome for significant periods, including between 401–408 and 440–449, and that Rome was the court’s primary residence between 450 and 476, the last generation of imperial rule in the West. The later years of the reign of Valentinian III and the rule of Anthemius in particular illustrate the role of Rome as the imperial residence." Languagehat (talk) 16:33, 12 April 2015 (UTC)

The last emperor in power over Rome was Constantine V. He was in power 741-775. In 751 Lombards invaded Exarchate of Ravenna and captured it. Only Rome duchy remained from the Exarchate's prevous two total duchies. In 752 pope Stephen II went to Paris and switched alegiance from Constatine V to Frankish king Pepin the Younger because the Emperor turned out to be incapable to defeat the Lombards. In 754 Pepin invaded Italy, defeated Lombards and installed his power there.--2A02:2168:83F:8428:0:0:0:1 (talk) 11:58, 15 December 2015 (UTC)


This title ("Semper Augustus") is not mentioned.--2A02:2168:83F:8428:0:0:0:1 (talk) 11:44, 15 December 2015 (UTC)