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Maximinus, Gaius Julius Verus

MAXIMINUS, GAIUS JULIUS VERUS, Roman emperor from A.D. 235 to 238, was born in a village on the confines of Thrace. He was of barbarian parentage and was brought up as a shepherd. His immense stature and enormous feats of strength attracted the attention of the emperor Septimius Severus. He entered the army, and under Caracalla rose to the rank of centurion. He carefully absented himself from court during the reign of Heliogabalus, but under his successor Alexander Severus, was appointed supreme commander of the Roman armies. After the murder of Alexander in Gaul, hastened, it is said, by his instigation, Maximinus was proclaimed emperor by the soldiers on the 1Qth of March 235. The three years of his reign, which were spent wholly in the camp, were marked by great cruelty and oppression; the widespread discontent thus produced culminated in a revolt in Africa and the assumption of the purple by Gordian (q.v.). Maximinus, who was in Pannonia at the time, marched against Rome, and passing over the Julian Alps descended on Aquileia; while detained before that city he and his son were murdered in their tent by a body of praetorians. Their heads were cut off and despatched to Rome, where they were burnt on the Campus Martius by the exultant crowd.

Capitolinus, Maximini duo; Herodian vi. 8, vii., viii. 1-5; Zosimus i. 13-15).

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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