Hadrian (Emperor)

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Capitoline Museums

Publius Aelius Hadrianus (titulature as emperor: Imperator Caesar Traianus Hadrianus Augustus ; * January 24, 76 in Italica near today's Seville or in Rome ; † July 10, 138 in Baiae ) was the fourteenth Roman emperor . He ruled from 117 until his death.

Hadrian, like his great-uncle and imperial predecessor Trajan, was native to Hispania . As ruler, he worked hard to consolidate the unity of the Roman Empire, which he toured extensively in large parts. Through grants and administrative measures at the level of the Roman provinces and cities, he promoted prosperity and strengthened the infrastructure. By fixing the edictum perpetuum , he gave the judiciary an important impetus. Since he waged only a few wars, especially the one against the rebellious Jews , his reign was an epoch of peace for the vast majority of the empire. He renounced conquests and gave up the territories occupied by Trajan in the Parthian War , with which he carried out a sharp and controversial change of course, which strained his relationship with the Senate , but prevented the forces of Rome from being overstretched. After that, Hadrian concentrated his military efforts on an efficient organization of the defense of the empire. Border fortifications, including Hadrian's Wall named after him, served this purpose .

Hadrian was interested in many things and was ambitious in testing his talents. He held particular esteem for Greek culture, in particular the city of Athens , famous as a classical center of Greek education , which he promoted along with many other cities through intensive construction work. During his reign, important buildings such as the library in Athens , the Pantheon and Castel Sant'Angelo in Rome and Hadrian's Villa near Tivoli were built .

In the emperor's private life, his homoerotic relationship with the young man Antinous, who died early, played a central role. After the death of his lover, Hadrian set in motion his cultic veneration across the empire, which was very popular in the East, but also in Italy. Hadrian's two-generation succession plan set the course for the successful continuation of the empire consolidation initiated by him under his two successors, Antoninus Pius and Marcus Aurelius .

Origin and advancement

Iberian roots and ties

Amphitheater in Italica

Hadrian came from a Roman family who had already settled in Italica in the province of Hispania ulterior (later Baetica ) in the south of the Iberian Peninsula during the republican period as part of the Roman expansion . The unknown author of Hadrian's biography in the Historia Augusta , who used material from Hadrian's now-lost autobiography, reports that the family originally came from Hadria or Hatria (now Atri ) in the central Italian Picenum . The nickname Hadrianus goes back to the name of this city, which was also eponymous for the Adriatic Sea . Baetica was rich in minerals; Grain and wine were grown there in large quantities and the province also exported garum, which is essential for Roman cuisine . Some influential families who made their fortunes in Hispania, including the Ulpii with Trajan, the Aelii with Hadrian, and the Annii with Marcus Aurelius, formed a network through marriage alliances and held together in Rome in pursuit of influential positions.

Nothing is known about Hadrian's childhood. In view of his early philhellenism , it is considered that his father, Senator Publius Aelius Hadrianus Afer, might have taken him to Greece as a possible proconsul of the Achaea province when he was a child. He lost his father, who had attained praetorical rank, at the age of ten. Hadrian then came under the guardianship of Trajan, who was a cousin of his father, and under that of the knight Publius Acilius Attianus , who was also based in Italica . At the age of fourteen Hadrian found himself on the family estates in Italica after creating the toga virilis . He went through basic military training there and should probably familiarize himself with the management of family estates. In the process, however, he developed an exaggerated enthusiasm for hunting from the point of view of his guardian Trajan and was ordered back to Rome by him.

Ascent under Trajan's guidance

Head of Trajan (fragment of a larger than life statue, Glyptothek , Munich)

The career of Hadrian between his return from Hispania and his assumption of rule as emperor 117 occupies research mainly from the point of view of the unanswered question whether he was actually adopted by Trajan shortly before his death and designated as his successor, which was already doubted in ancient times . Clues for a clarification of Trajan's intentions can be obtained from the available news about the relationship between the two men from the 1990s onwards.

At the age of eighteen Hadrian was appointed as decemvir stlitibus iudicandis in 94 to a supervisory body at the court. He is attested in inscriptions in two further functions on the way to a senatorial career: He served as a military tribune first with the Legio II Adiutrix in Aquincum (Budapest), then with the Legio V Macedonica in the Moesia inferior (Lower Moesia ). In autumn 97 Trajan was adopted by Nerva, who had come under pressure from the Praetorian Guard in Rome . Hadrian was commissioned by his legion to convey the congratulations on the adoption to the emperor's designated successor. In late autumn he made his way to the Rhine, where Trajan was staying. This put him now for a third military tribunate at the Legio XXII Primigenia stationed in Mogontiacum (Mainz) . A tension arose here with the newly appointed governor Lucius Iulius Ursus Servianus for the province of Germania superior , Hadrian's sister's husband, who was now his superior and rivaled him for Trajan's favor. When Nerva died in January 98 and Trajan succeeded him as emperor, the rivalry between Hadrian and Servianus continued.

Hadrian's ties to the imperial family became even closer through his marriage to his grandniece Trajans Vibia Sabina , who was ten years his junior and whom he married when he was twenty-four. In the same year 100 Hadrian came to the quaestorship and thus to the senate, in the privileged position of quaestor Augusti , who was among other things responsible for reading out the emperor's speeches. During the campaign against the Dacian king Decebalus , Hadrian 101 served as comes Augusti on the emperor's staff. His tribunate is to be set for 102, and the praetur for 105, which Trajan generously helped with the popular organization by holding costly games. Hadrian also took part in Trajan's second Dacian war, which began in June 105, now as commander ( legatus legionis) of the Legio I Minervia . For his military achievements he was awarded a diamond by Trajan, which he had received from Nerva. As a result, he got the governor post in Lower Pannonia , which had to be secured against the Jazygen . At the age of 32, Hadrian became a suffect consul in 108 .

Whether this career shows that Hadrian was prepared as planned for the role as future successor of Trajan is a question that has not been clearly clarified. Trajan had not made him a patrician a priori , which would have allowed him to skip tribunate and aedility ; nevertheless Hadrian became consul as quickly as it could be the case with patricians. Compared to these, he had the advantage of a significant military experience, which was not usual among patricians in this form. Trajan gave Hadrian significant privileges and powers, but he always dosed them.

Versatile personality

The Palatine Library in Villa Adriana

Hadrian showed ambition not only in his rapid ascent in the political career and in the military field, but also in various other fields of activity. His good command of the two languages ​​Latin and Greek as well as his rhetorical qualities, passed down through literary sources and fragments, suggest an intensive training in grammar and rhetoric. According to the sources, he had acumen, a thirst for knowledge, eagerness to learn and a quick grasp of things. In research, this information is not only judged as a common repertoire of praise for rulers, but is also considered plausible in view of his actions. His traditional fields of activity, including singing, playing a stringed instrument, painting, sculpture and poetry, but also geometry and arithmetic, medicine and astronomy, bear witness to the diversity of his interests. However, the assessment of his specific performance within this wide range of activities is controversial; According to negative reviews, he was just a high profile amateur who even tried to play himself in front of the respective special experts in a subject.

Hadrian's marriage was childless. He is said to have had extramarital relationships, but there are no confirmed descendants. Apparently he was primarily homoerotically oriented, which was reflected in the Erastes-Eromenos relationships . It is said, for example, that he had frequent contact with the lust boys who could be found in Trajan's house. His relationship with Antinous , a young Bithynian whom Hadrian probably met in Asia Minor , was of lasting importance . Antinous belonged to the emperor's court for some time and accompanied him on his travels until he drowned in the Nile under circumstances that were never clarified .

The literary sources paint a varied and sometimes contradicting picture of Hadrian's character and nature. The Historia Augusta says: "He was both strict and cheerful, affable and dignified, frivolous and thoughtful, stingy and generous, a master in hypocrisy and dissimulation, cruel and kind, in short, always and changeable in every respect." Cassius Dio attested Hadrian's insatiable ambition, curiosity and uninhibited zest for action. He is also said to have had quick wit and wit. Jörg Fündling , the leading expert on this source, considers the phenomenal memory performance attributed to Hadrian in the Historia Augusta to be exaggerated and unbelievable in this form. These include the claims that Hadrian did not need anyone to help him out by name in everyday life, because he knew how to greet everyone he met by name and even remembered the names of all the legionnaires he had ever dealt with. He was only able to recapitulate lists of names that had been read once and even correct them in individual cases; He also recited little-known new books after reading them once. Fündling is also skeptical of the statement in the Historia Augusta that Hadrian was able to write, dictate, listen and chat with his friends at the same time. After Fündlings view Hadrian's biographer was the presentation of Caesar by Pliny the Elder on offer, according to the Julius , as he wrote, at the same time either dictate or could listen.

Beginning of rule

The problem of the alleged adoption by Trajan

Hadrian's Coin

When Trajan's speechwriter Sura died soon after Hadrian's suffect consulate, Hadrian also came into this position of trust close to the ruler. During the Parthian War , to which Trajan decided in the fall of 113, Hadrian was also part of the command staff. When Trajan's offensive against the Parthian Empire in Mesopotamia encountered massive resistance and rebellions within the Roman Empire, especially in North Africa, required considerable efforts to suppress them, Trajan withdrew, planned to return to Rome and installed Hadrian as governor in Syria . He was thus also given command of the army in the east, a position of power that no other possible successor candidate possessed. Two high officers, Aulus Cornelius Palma Frontonianus and Tiberius Iulius Celsus Polemaeanus , who may have pursued their own successor ambitions, Trajan himself had removed from his inner circle of power. Thus Hadrian had no serious rivals.

Hadrian was therefore promoted by Trajan in many ways. The question remains, however, why Trajan only adopted the adoption immediately before his death, if he did at all. In recent research, a plausible reason is that Trajan feared premature disempowerment in view of his limited ability to act due to illness; the adoption had to result in a reorientation of the leading circles towards the coming man and its effect could in fact amount to an abdication. What is certain is that Hadrian's friends and allies in the immediate vicinity of the dying emperor exerted their influence. They included the Empress Plotina , Trajan's niece Matidia and above all the Praetorian Prefect Attianus, Hadrian's former guardian.

Another possibility is that when Trajan set out on the sea voyage to Rome, he intended to adopt it there, just as he had once been adopted in absentia by Nerva during his military command on the Rhine. A public adoption in Rome would have given Hadrian an indubitable legitimation. The return trip had to be canceled because of Trajan's dramatically deteriorating health - stroke and incipient circulatory failure - off the Cilician coast near Selinus .

The news of the adoption that still took place is based solely on the testimony of Plotina and the Praetorian prefect Attianus, whose massive support for Hadrian is beyond doubt. The only possibly independent witness, Trajan's valet, died under strange circumstances three days after the emperor. Therefore, the suspicion arose early on that the adoption had been faked by Hadrian's supporters. Even in modern research, this suspicion has not been invalidated. By missing the right time and framework for determining a successor, Trajan made it much more difficult for Hadrian to take office: There was no clear initiation of the transition for the Roman public and practically no transition period; instead, given the circumstances of the change of ruler, justifiable doubts about the lawful emergence of Hadrian Principate. Trajan had had 19 years to designate Hadrian as his successor; that he had either never done so or only at the last minute, doubted whether he had really wanted his great-nephew to be the new emperor.

Takeover and change in foreign policy

The Roman Empire in 125

According to the official version, Hadrian learned of his adoption by Trajan on August 9, 117 and of his demise on August 11. It is possible, however, that both reports were already contained in a letter sent from Selinus on August 7; In any case, the staggering of the announcement to the soldiers left room for the orderly proclamation of Hadrian, who had already been adopted under the Caesar title, as emperor. As on August 9 as adoption day was also the day the Kaiser survey (this imperil) , the August 11, henceforth committed by Syrian troops as a holiday. Hadrian immediately sent the Senate, which had been ignored, a letter in which he declared his elevation through army acclamation without a Senate vote, stating that the state must always have a ruler; therefore one had to act quickly. With this justification, a snub of the Senate should be avoided as far as possible. In the reaction of the Senate, Hadrian was not only confirmed as the new princeeps, but he was also offered a number of special honors, including the title pater patriae ("father of the fatherland"), which he initially rejected.

Hadrian did not go to Rome in the twelve months after his uprising, but remained concerned with the military reorganization in the east and on the Danube. On the one hand, he had to consolidate the legitimation of his rule before the public in Rome; on the other hand, he made foreign policy and military decisions that were necessary from his point of view, but represented a departure from the expansion policy of his very popular predecessor, were associated with territorial losses and therefore not available to the public were easy to convey. A new ruler, who decided to withdraw, was not an attractive appearance for the Senate and the people of Rome, especially since the Senate had already decided on the triumph and the victorious name of Parthicus for this 116 after the initial reports of victory from Trajan's Parthian campaign in the east . Hadrian surrendered within a short time Rome's extensive territorial claims both in the east and on the lower Danube in the area of ​​the province of Dacia. He evacuated the provinces of Mesopotamia and Armenia , conquered and newly established by Trajan , whereby the Euphrates became an imperial border again. This was militarily necessary because the Romans had largely lost control of these eastern areas in the 24 months before due to local uprisings and Parthian counter-attacks. Also north of the lower Danube, large parts of the areas conquered under Trajan were given up, for example on the lower Olt and in Mutenia, in the eastern part of the Carpathian Mountains and in the south of Moldova.

While Hadrian made this clear change in foreign policy, he emphasized - also because of the doubts about his adoption - the continuity with his predecessor in order to appease his numerous supporters. Therefore, he promoted the extensive honor of Trajan, initially took over his entire title and had coins minted, among other things, which showed him with Trajan - symbolizing the transfer of power - shaking hands.

Features of Hadrian's Principate

With a generally respectful treatment of the Senate and its policy of external pacification, Hadrian was able to place himself in the succession of Augustus and on the ground of a new Pax Augusta . He saw his own role and task in particular in stabilizing the cohesion of the Roman Empire, also by being interested in the particular regional features, accepting them and promoting them in many ways. As a special characteristic of his principality, the long journeys of Hadrian over several years are highlighted, unique in the Roman Empire both in terms of their scope and conception. He was celebrated on coins as a “restorer” and “enricher of the world” (restitutor orbis terrarum and locupletor orbis terrarum) .

Hadrian combined his far-reaching travels with measures to fortify the borders and with the thorough inspection and reorganization of the Roman army units, whose undiminished readiness and effectiveness he vigorously maintained even in times of far-reaching external peace. The greatest military challenge of his principate, however, turned out to be an internal uprising well after the halfway point of his rule: the protracted and costly suppression of the Jewish uprising. Hadrian's special attention and interest had already been directed to the Greek eastern half of the Roman Empire, whose historical and cultural togetherness he sought to revive. A center of his diverse building initiatives and design measures spread across the empire was therefore Athens, to which he felt particularly drawn, as his comparatively frequent longer stays showed.

A “Golden Age” program and everyday political life

Portrait of Hadrian ( Museo Nazionale Romano )

Especially in the first years of his reign, Hadrian was anxious to be recognized and recognized as Trajan's heir; with its increase he also increased his own reputation. On the other hand, he also wanted to emphasize his own line, in particular to put his drastic change in foreign policy in the best possible light and to give the Roman Empire a new model to match. Hadrian King Numa Pompilius , the peaceful successor of Romulus , and above all Emperor Augustus , the reorganizer of the Roman Empire after the end of the civil wars and founder of the Principate, served as historical models for his policy, which was focused on peace and consolidation . An emperor who restored the imbalanced order of the empire could thus present himself as heir to Augustus. With the generally respectful treatment of the Senate and its policy of external pacification, Hadrian was able to stand on the ground of a new Pax Augusta .

The coinage of the early years of Hadrian's Principate emphasized the goal of stable and pleasant external and internal relationships with predominant slogans such as unity (concordia) , justice (iustitia) and peace (pax) . There were also evoked performances of long duration (aeternitas) and a golden age (saeculum aureum) ; the phoenix symbolized both the regained prosperity and the eternal existence of the empire. Hadrian's orientation towards Augustus was also evident in the construction of the Pantheon , the first large-scale object that was completed under him as emperor in Rome. There the reference to Augustus is evident not only in the architrave inscription, which names Agrippa, an important confidante of this emperor, but also through the forecourt and the temple front of the vestibule, which are clearly reminiscent of the Augustus Forum.

Hadrian paid special attention not only in Rome, but also during his inspection trips to the case law. In doing so, he ensured a systematization of the principles of jurisprudence by commissioning the leading jurist of his time, Publius Salvius Iulianus , to write the praetoric legislation, which had been revised annually by an edict after the praetors took office, in the edictum perpetuum (probably from the Years 128) on a permanent basis. Although the edict was not actually a codification, it had a great influence: the lawyer Ulpian wrote over 80 books of commentaries on it, which later found their way into Justinian's digests . The edictum perpetuum contributed to the fact that the emperor was increasingly viewed as a source of law. Karl Christ rated Hadrian's efforts in the field of justice as very positive . The relevant measures of the ruler are not characterized by monarchical arbitrariness, but by objectivity, objectivity and humanity. Disadvantaged groups and lower classes in Roman society in particular benefited from this. Women were given the right to manage their own property and inheritance. The marriage of the girls from then on required their express consent.

As the highest judge, Hadrian was apparently knowledgeable and coped with an impressive workload. In the winter quarters of the year 129 he is said to have held 130 court days. According to a widespread anecdote that has been handed down in various versions, Hadrian was approached by an old woman on a trip and hurriedly told her that he had no time. "Then stop being emperor!" The woman called after him. Hadrian stopped and listened to them.

A renewed strengthening of its social significance learned under Hadrian the senatorial order (ordo senatorius) downstream knights (ordo equester) . The Princeps put all the central administrative departments previously run by freedmen into their hands; among them he also selected the two Prefects of the Guard, one of whom now had to be a specialist lawyer.

At a decentralized level in the provinces, Hadrian promoted urban self-government. This was expressed, among other things, in the granting of coinage rights and in the granting of needs-based city constitutions. In the central finance and tax administration of the empire, however, he again relied on the systematization of the previous procedures and appointed special representatives for the fiscal interests of the state, the advocati fisci .

Italy, which Hadrian divided into four regions, each under the control of an imperial legate, was oriented more towards the imperial central administration. This was at the expense of the senate's competencies, since the legates were supposed to be selected from the ranks of previous consuls, but not by the senate, but by the emperor.

Relationship to the Senate and the people

A model of Hadrian:

Hadrian also succeeded Augustus in relation to the Senate: he showed respect for the institution by attending the meetings when he was in Rome; he used to deal with senators and made the missing funds available to those members of the senatorial class who were financially in dire straits. In questions of political participation, however, he left the Senate little room for maneuver and instead consulted with people he trusted personally.

The relationship between the emperor and the senate was severely strained at the beginning and then again at the end of his principate by the execution of four consulates in the first case and at least two in the second. The first action involved eliminating a group of four key Trajan's military commanders (Avidius Nigrinus, Aulus Cornelius Palma Frontonianus , Lucius Publilius Celsus and Lusius Quietus ) who were suspected of disapproving of Hadrian's takeover. All of them would have been considered emperors themselves because of their military merits and for that reason alone represented a potential threat to the new princeps with his questionable legitimacy. While Hadrian himself was not yet back in Italy, his Praetorian prefect Attianus organized an execution in four different places without even bringing the victims to justice. This action led to strong tensions with the Senate, where the reason given that the consular had conspired against the new emperor was seen as a pretext, so that Hadrian, after his arrival in Rome, demonstratively removed Attianus as a scapegoat in order to convince the senators appease. Moreover, the emperor claimed to have known nothing of the executions; but this was not believed, and his relationship with the Senate remained difficult even after he had promised not to have any more senators executed in the future.

In the other case, which occurred when Hadrian's health was already severely impaired and was dealing with dispositions for his successor, the conduct and ambitions of two relatives of the emperor who saw themselves neglected in the succession plan probably gave the impetus for their execution. It was Hadrian's almost ninety-year-old brother-in-law Servianus and his grandson Fuscus, Hadrian's great-nephew. A transfer of the imperial dignity to Servianus and after his death to Fuscus could have seemed possible to both of them; in any case, they appeared to Hadrian as potentially threatening, so that they were sentenced to death.

Before his last phase of life, which was marked by serious illness and in which he withdrew from the public, Hadrian tried to be affable, accommodating and helpful to both the senators and ordinary citizens as princeps civilis . It is said that one could meet him among ordinary citizens in public baths and talk to him. He made sick visits not only to senators, but also to important knights and freedmen, sometimes not just once a day. This behavior made him popular with the knights and freedmen, but not with the Senate, which saw his position threatened. Hadrian's demonstrative generosity and generosity made a lasting impression. Cassius Dio reports that you didn't have to ask him for help first, but that he helped out as needed. He invited scholars, philosophers and artists to his evening table parties to discuss with them. Hadrian's political and social demeanor is described in some sources as being characterized by moderatio (prudence) and modestia (moderation); However, exaggerations, stylizations and typologies are to be expected, but some researchers consider the tenor to be credible.

On the other hand, there were anecdotes about him that were borrowed from the tyrant topic; and at least once there was almost a scandal when the emperor wanted to order the people gathered in the circus to be silent; this would have been a grave violation of the principled ideology , which was only prevented by the Herald. The ruler's long absence from Rome, first because of his travels and then because of his retreat to his villa, was undoubtedly seen as a disregard for the people. Antoninus Pius was only able to enforce the deification of his predecessor against resistance in the Senate .

Travel, troop inspection and border fortifications

Replica of the head of a bronze statue of Hadrian (found in the Thames), which was probably erected around 122 AD on the occasion of his visit to Britain; It was probably destroyed in the 4th or 5th century and then thrown into the river (London, British Museum)
Selection of allegorical provincial representations on Hadrian's denarii ( travel commemorative coins )

Hadrian's extensive travels, which also served to satisfy his cosmopolitan thirst for knowledge, were intended to support and secure the transition to a reorganization of the empire. Coin minting, among other things, served to publicize this widely distributed rulership: Adventus coins, which celebrated the arrival of the emperor in a region or province, restitutor mints, which praised his activity as a restorer of cities, regions and provinces, and exercitus coins on the occasion the inspections of the troop contingents of different provinces.

Especially with the organization of the military sector, Hadrian succeeded Trajan and had to go new ways under changed conditions. While Trajan had gathered the troops around him during expansion campaigns and, as emperor, often found himself in the center of order, the situation now arose for Hadrian that the first and most important pillar of his rule was mainly stationed on the outer borders of the empire. Visiting the parts of the army, some of which were far away from Italy, making on-site speeches, inspections, accompanying and evaluating maneuvers could serve to keep the legions' ties to the emperor alive and to prevent military units from becoming independent, which would otherwise hardly be effective far from Rome control were. As it was, however, the princeeps showed that he was not afraid of long journeys and that one could or had to expect his coming. According to recent calculations, he and his entourage set a speed that, with appropriately developed roads and paths, suggests travel conditions that were only reached again in the 19th century at an average speed of 20 to 30 kilometers per day.

When he arrived at the troop locations, he did not limit his inspections to military matters in the narrower sense, but, according to Cassius Dio, also examined some private matters. Where camp life had become luxurious in his view, Hadrian took precautions against it. He shared the daily hardships with the soldiers and impressed with the fact that, bareheaded, he defied every climate: the snow in the north as well as the scorching sun of Egypt. The methods and military exercises he used to train the discipline outlasted his century.

Hadrian's Wall (Vallum Hadriani) at Housesteads

In the run-up to his first big trip from 121 to 125, Hadrian ordered measures to expand the Upper Germanic-Rhaetian Limes , which was to form a clearly visible, fortified outer border of the Roman Empire through palisades made of halved oak trunks: a clear expression of Hadrian's decision to include the expansion policy Put an end to. A four-year absence from Rome began in 121 with the inspection of troops and border fortifications in the area of ​​the Danube and Rhine. Moving down the Rhine and crossing it into Britain, he went to join the troops who were building Hadrian's Wall between Solway Firth and Tyne . This wall allowed the effective control of all human and goods traffic; a system of fortifications and outposts made it possible to control a considerable area north and south of the wall. Before winter, Hadrian left the island again and traveled through Gaul, where a stay in Nîmes is documented. He reached Spain on the Via Domitia , where he wintered in Tarragona and organized a meeting of representatives from all regions and main towns in Spain. In 123 he crossed to North Africa and carried out troop inspections before he set out there because of a threatened new conflict with the Parthians in the east and achieved a calming of the situation in negotiations on the Euphrates . The further route led via Syria and various cities in Asia Minor to Ephesus . From there, Hadrian reached Greece by sea, where he spent all year 124 before returning to Rome in the summer of 125.

After a visit to North Africa 128 Hadrian set off again via Athens on a journey to the eastern half of the empire. Visiting places and transit stations were the regions of Asia Minor Caria , Phrygia , Cappadocia and Cilicia before he spent the winter in Antioch . In 130 he was traveling in the provinces of Arabia and Judea . In Egypt he went up the Nile, visiting the ancient cities. After the death of Antinous he traveled by ship from Alexandria along the Syrian and Asia Minor coasts with stops in between to the north. In the summer and autumn of 131 he stayed either permanently in the west coast regions of Asia Minor or further north in Thrace , Moesia, Dacia and Macedonia. He spent the winter and spring of 132 for the last time in Athens, before then, alarmed by the Jewish uprising , either returned to Rome or to see the situation for himself in Judea.

His travels had an overall positive effect on the welfare of the areas that the emperor visited. He initiated many projects after convincing himself of their necessity on site. He promoted the preservation of local historical and cultural traditions by ensuring that representative old buildings were restored, local games and cults were renewed and the graves of important personalities were repaired. Infrastructural improvements in the road network, port facilities and bridge construction were also combined with Hadrian's travel activities. Other questions, such as the stimulating economic effects of the Imperial Travel, have not been clarified in research. Coins minted in related issues from Hadrian's last years of reign accounted for the return of the long journeys for the population in a completely new way, a report of deeds of its own. There are three types of so-called provincial coins : one that shows the personification of a part of the empire and the name of the emperor names, another, which commemorates the arrival of the emperor in the respective area, with Hadrian and the respective personification facing each other, and a third, which is dedicated to the emperor as the 'renewer' of a part of riches and makes him stand up a woman kneeling in front of him .


Hadrian in Greek clothes

In addition to Rome as the center of power, which he could not neglect, Hadrian's generosity and permanent devotion were exceptionally strong in Greece and especially Athens. His philhellenism , which was developed early on and earned him the nickname Graeculus ("little Greek"), not only determined his aesthetic inclinations, but was also reflected in his appearance, in the accents of his life and environment as well as in his political will and activity. The expression Graeculus also marks a certain mocking distance between the Roman upper class and the rich and demanding Greek educational value. Even in republican times, too intense preoccupation with Greek philosophy, for example, was considered harmful to a young Roman. On the other hand, the adolescent Hadrian found in Rome under Domitian , who had written poetry himself and assumed the office of archon as emperor in Athens , a climate that was thoroughly open to Greek culture. Since 86 Domitian has held a four-year competition for poets and musicians, athletes and riders, which he himself presides dressed in Greek in a newly built arena for 15,000 spectators.

The hairstyle and beard were striking in Hadrian's external appearance and clearly contrasted with Trajan. Hadrian's curly forehead - with lavishly curled hair in contrast to Trajan's “forked hairstyle” - was one obvious difference, his beard the other. With his beard, Hadrian changed the fashion of the empire for over a century. He was able to present himself to Trajan as his own personality and at the same time set accents in cultural terms with the "Greek beard" or "educated beard".

As soon as the opportunity arose for Hadrian after completing his official career and during a break from Trajan's major military operations, he went to Athens in 111/112, was granted citizenship there and was elected archon, which only Domitian and his predecessors did Successors were only granted to Gallienus again , who, in contrast to him, were already reigning emperors at the time of their archonate. For the time in the middle of his fourth decade of life, Hadrian was apparently largely released from other tasks and obligations and was able to devote more than usual to his inclinations, establish and maintain contacts. During this time he may have visited and spoken to the stoic philosopher Epictetus . Through the mediation of his friend Quintus Sosius Senecio , who was also friends with Pliny the Younger , or Favorinus , he could have met Plutarch and had frequent contact with the sophist Polemon of Laodikeia . Hadrian was also obviously interested in the Epicureans , as can be proven at the latest in 121 when he was involved in a new arrangement for the appointment of the school management. A clear assignment of Hadrian to a specific philosophical school does not result from this. As an eclectic , he must have made a selection of what was important to him: Epicurean perhaps with a view to his own circle of friends, stoic elements more with regard to state obligations.

In a religious sense, Hadrian adopted the ancient Athenian tradition for himself. After Augustus he was the second Roman emperor to be initiated into the mysteries of Eleusis . His initiation on the first stage could already fall during the time of his archonate. A later, probably to the second stage of initiation (Epopteia) related coinage showing on the front Augustus carrying the inscription on the back side other than the picture of a sheaf Hadrianus August (ustus) p (ater) p (atriae) ren. It is ren . for renatus ( "regenerated"); Hadrian thus operated under the sign of the Eleusinian mysteries as a born again. He was therefore likely to have been included among the Epopts on the occasion of one of the further stays in Athens 124 or 128.

Ruins of the Olympieion

While Greece was seen in large parts of the Roman upper class at that time only as a cultural-historical-museum ensemble worth visiting for building purposes, Hadrian worked to lead the Greeks, as the eastern population pole of the Roman Empire, to new unity and strength and to more self-confidence. During his inspection trips through the Greek provinces, he triggered a festive frenzy by holding games and competitions . No other emperor gave his name to so many games as he did with the Hadrians . With significant structural innovations and infrastructural improvement measures, he ensured that Athens was revived as a metropolis of the Greeks. With the construction of the Olympieion , which he envisaged as the cultic center of a Panhellenion , a representative assembly of all Greeks in the Roman Empire , which was finally completed at his instigation after centuries , Hadrian took up the synhedrion , which was well over half a millennium ago and whose competencies were greatest in the era The power of the Attic democracy had been relocated to Athens under Pericles . The Athenians thanked Hadrian for his donation by celebrating the emperor's first stay as the beginning of a new city era.

The Hadrian's Gate in Athens

Apparently, this corresponded to a large extent to Hadrian's self-image and the way he portrayed himself in public space. At the transition from the city to the Olympieion district, Hadrian's Gate was built in his honor . The inscriptions on both sides of the gate refer to Theseus as the founding hero of Athens and Hadrian as the founder of the new city. By appearing here without the usual additional title, Hadrian did not practice so much modesty, but rather placed himself on the same level as the ritually revered city founder Theseus, who was also named without any particular rank or title.

The Athenians were demonstratively grateful to the emperor in other ways as well, as the large number of honorary statues that are proven for Hadrian shows. In Athens alone there were several hundred portraits of the emperor in marble or bronze . In Miletus , by decision of the council, he received a new one every year, so that at the end of his reign there were 22 statues or busts of Hadrian. The archaeologist Götz Lahusen estimates that there were 15,000 to 30,000 portraits of him in antiquity; around 250 of them are known today. Hadrian, for his part, founded the Athenaeum in Rome in 135 .

A power-political component of Hadrian's commitment to the Greeks was that the Greek-speaking provinces acted as an abutment and a dormant pole in the hinterland of the oriental military hotspots and conflict zones. This was the political and strategic side of Hadrian's philhellenism. Hadrian did not seek to relocate the center of political power to the eastern part of the empire.

The importance of the Panhellenion as a political binding and strengthening means of Greek unity was in any case limited. The date and seat of the assembly, as well as its goal, are uncertain. Perhaps the Greek poleis should be harmonized with one another and at the same time bound more closely to Rome and the West via Athens. Apart from cultural contacts, not much seems to have remained after Hadrian's death.

Construction activity

Hadrian Temple in Ephesus

Hadrian's principate was associated with a sustained upswing in building projects of the most varied kinds, not only affecting Rome and Athens, but the cities and regions throughout the empire. Construction became one of Hadrian's priorities. Political and dynastic considerations as well as the emperor's deep personal interest in architecture contributed to this. Some of the buildings built in Hadrian's era represent a turning point and high point of Roman architecture.

Cassius Dio attests to early studies in painting and modeling, as well as Hadrian's interest in architecture. Hadrian also apparently showed no hesitation in coming up with his own construction ideas and drafts, even among masters of the subject. Cassius Dio reports of a bitter rebuff that the famous architect Apollodorus of Damascus gave the perhaps somewhat cheeky young man. Apollodor is said to have rebuked Hadrian, who interrupted him in his remarks to Trajan: “Get lost and draw your pumpkins. You don't understand anything about these things. "

Soon after taking power, Hadrian began implementing his own building program in both Rome and Athens and on the family estate near Tibur . The operation on these and numerous other construction sites ran parallel for a long time and in some cases even beyond Hadrian's death, for example in the case of the Temple of Venus and the Roma and at Hadrian's mausoleum . In this way, especially in Rome, the emperor's constant commitment to the metropolis was evident, even in the long periods of his absence.

On inspection visits to the provinces of the empire it is not accompanied only responsible for correspondence imperial office, which initially still Suetonius board, but also a selection of building professionals of all kinds. As the archaeologist Heiner Knell finds stood in almost any other time of antiquity the flourishing building culture under such a favorable star as under Hadrian; At that time, buildings emerged "which have become fixed points in the history of Roman architecture".

Facade of the Pantheon

A striking preserved monument of this architectural heyday is the Pantheon , destroyed by lightning and redesigned under Hadrian in 110 , which was completed in the mid-120s and used by Hadrian publicly for receptions and court sessions. The position of the pantheon on an axis with the entrance of the Augustus mausoleum , which is a good seven hundred meters away, indicates a commitment to the legacy of Augustus, especially since Agrippa probably originally conceived the pantheon as a sanctuary for the family of Augustus and the patron gods associated with them. The building is spectacular with its interior, which is vaulted by the largest non-reinforced concrete dome in the world. The prerequisite for this was a “concrete revolution”, which made it possible for Roman building technology to construct buildings that had not yet occurred in human history. In addition to bricks (figlinae) , concrete (opus caementicium) was or became a basic building material. The management class including the imperial family invested in this trade, especially brick production.

Construction site and ruins of the double temple of Venus and Roma

For the Romans, the construction of the double temple for Venus and Roma on Velia , one of the original seven hills of Rome, looked impressively new in another way . The connection between two goddesses was unusual, and there were hardly any precedents for such an important cult of the Roma in their own city. With this building, Hadrian appeared as the new Romulus (city founder). While the cellae of the double temple corresponded to the Italian temple type, the columned hall surrounding both cellae followed the Greek temple type. It was by far the largest temple complex in Rome. In it the cross-cultural expansion of the Roman Empire could be symbolized as well as a cultural unity and identity gained from it. When Hadrian sent the plans to Apollodorus for examination and comment, he is said - again according to the Cassius Dios report - to have drastically criticized and again incurred Hadrian's anger. The tradition that Hadrian first ensured the exile and then also the death of Apollodor in exile, is considered extremely implausible in recent research. Even when the building site for the double temple was being opened up, the Romans were presented with an unforgettable sight: The colossus made under Nero and erected there , a 35 meter high bronze statue with an estimated minimum weight of over 200 tons, which was associated with the sun god Sol , was technically unexplained Way, using 24 elephants supposedly standing upright.

Garden of Hadrian's Villa in Tibur (now Tivoli)

Almost in the open field, Hadrian was able to pursue his ambitions as a builder on the country estate near Tibur , the area of ​​which is now about 40 hectares . The site has been largely destroyed, but Hadrian's Villa is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site and is unique, not least because of the eclectic mix of different architectural styles (Roman, Greek, Egyptian). The mansion, a sprawling palace and alternative seat of government, looked almost like a small town. New types of experiments were dared in the planning and construction techniques. Due to its wealth of forms and the splendor of its decor, the villa subsequently became one of the seeds for the development of art and architecture. The new possibilities in concrete construction were also used here in a variety of ways, for example in domes and semi-domes, into which varied openings were cut when developing new types of room lighting. In connection with the strongly changing room sizes and shapes as well as a diverse interior decoration, the visitor was accompanied on a tour with a constant element of surprise, which also gained validity in the change of perspective from the interior to views of the gardens and landscape. The villa thus set a new standard for Roman architecture.

The entrance to the Augustus mausoleum

Already in the first years of his principalate, Hadrian made provisions for his own death and burial by building the monumental mausoleum on the bank of the Tiber opposite the Marsfeld, parallel to the start of construction of the double temple of Venus and Roma . There, however, it ultimately formed the optical counterpart to the likewise cylindrical main part of the Augustus mausoleum , which lay a few hundred meters northeast on the other bank of the Tiber. With a total height of the monument of about 50 meters, the 31 meter high drum alone at the base had a diameter of 74 meters. The structure, which was probably begun in 123 and has been preserved to this day, rested on a concrete platform about two meters thick. It is no longer possible to reconstruct the superstructures and the figural furnishings above the basic structure.

A synopsis of the building program implemented by Hadrian shows that he also tried to bring together the characteristic cultural features of different parts of the Roman Empire in a synthesis - very clearly, for example, in the architectural diversity of Hadrian's villa near Tibur, rich in allusions and citations. But Rome and Athens were also architecturally referred to each other by Hadrian. The exterior of the Roman double temple of Venus and Roma had a Greek character, while the Hadrian's Library donated for Athens, for example, transferred typical Roman architecture to the design of the columns.


Bust of Antinous from the Villa Hadriana in Tivoli , now in the Louvre
Antinous as Osiris
Antinous as imperial priest

One of the sensational peculiarities of Hadrian's principate and one of the factors that have long-term determining the image of this emperor is his relationship with the Greek youth Antinous . The time when it came about is not known. Cassius Dio and the author of the Historia Augusta only dealt with Antinous on the occasion of the circumstances of his death and Hadrian's reactions to it. These were so unusual with regard to the emperor's mourning and the associated creation of an Antinous cult that Hadrian research was stimulated or challenged to many different interpretations.

Since there was undoubtedly an Erastes-Eromenos relationship between the two , Antinous probably stayed near the emperor from around the age of fifteen until his death when he was around twenty. This assumption is supported by pictorial representations of Antinous. He came from the Bithynian Mantineion near Claudiopolis . Hadrian probably met him during his stay in Asia Minor in 123/124.

For the contemporary environment it was not so much Hadrian's homoerotic tendency towards the adolescent that was irritating - such conditions existed with Trajan as well - but rather the way the emperor dealt with the death of his beloved, which continuously saddened him and for whom he wept like a woman - unlike the death of his sister Paulina, which also fell during this time. The very different degrees of posthumous honors that Hadrian bestowed on Antinous and Paulina were also registered as a noticeable discrepancy. This was perceived as improper neglect of the sister. Both the excessive mourning and the fact that the deceased was considered a mere pleasure boy and therefore not worth mourning was offensive.

As little as these forms of the ruler's mourning work did not fit the Roman way of thinking, the circumstances under which Antinous died were equally dubious: In addition to natural death by falling into the Nile and subsequent drowning, as Hadrian himself portrayed, there were alternative interpretations into consideration, according to which Antinous either sacrificed himself for Hadrian or sought suicide in an untenable situation. The assumption of the sacrificial death is based on magical ideas, according to which the life of the emperor could be extended if someone else sacrificed his own for him. Antinous could have sought death on his own initiative because as an adult he could not continue the previous relationship with Hadrian, since he had lost the specific attractiveness of an adolescent and a relationship between two adult men - unlike between a man and a young person - was considered unacceptable in Roman society.

The place and time of Antinous' death in the Nile met Hadrian's efforts to deify and worship his dead lover. In Egypt, the adaptation of Antinous to the god Osiris offered itself . Contributing to this was the fact that his death occurred around the anniversary of Osiris' drowning. According to an Egyptian tradition, which Antinous may have known, those who drowned in the Nile received divine honors. The thought of saving someone else's life with one's own life was familiar to Greeks and Romans.

Near the place where Antinous drowned, Hadrian founded the city of Antinoupolis on October 30, 130 , which grew up around the burial place and tomb temple of Antinous, following the pattern of Naukratis , the oldest Greek settlement in Egypt. It is possible that he had planned to found a city for Greek settlers for the current stay on the Nile. This was in line with his policy of Hellenization in the eastern provinces of the empire. In addition, another port on the right bank of the Nile might bring economic impetus with it. Antinoupolis joined a large number of new cities, some of which Hadrian endowed with his own name. Since Augustus no emperor had founded cities in so large numbers and spread over so many provinces.

Individual Hellenistic rulers had already pursued the posthumous deification of their beloved. The model for this was provided by Alexander the Great when he showered his lover Hephaistion with honors including a hero cult after his death, which also met with criticism. What was new about the cult established by Hadrian for Antinous was the area-wide extent and the inclusion of the cadastre ; Hadrian claimed to have seen the star of Antinous. The concrete form of the Antinous cult could have been discussed after the imperial society had returned to Alexandria for a stay of several months. Speeches and poems for the consolation of Hadrian may have offered many suggestions for the later Antinous iconography .

The Antinous cult found enormous spread in different varieties. The youth, present as a statue in many places, was demonstratively closely associated with the imperial family, as emphasized by a browband on which Nerva and Hadrian appear. The veneration as hero outweighed the divine honors in the narrower sense; mostly Antinous appears as the Hermes equivalent, as Osiris-Dionysus or as the patron of seeds. Archeology has unearthed around 100 marble portraits of Antinous . Only from Augustus and Hadrian themselves have more such portraits come down to us from classical antiquity. Earlier assumptions that the Antinous cult was only widespread in the Greek eastern part of the Roman Empire have since been refuted: more Antinous statues are known from Italy than from Greece and Asia Minor. Leading circles not only close to the imperial family promoted the Antinous cult; He also had a following among the masses, which also linked him with the hope of eternal life. Lamps, bronze vessels and other objects of daily life bear witness to the acceptance of the Antinous cult by the general population and its effects on everyday iconography. The veneration of Antinous was also promoted with festive games, the Antinóeia , not only in Antinoupolis, but also in Athens, where such games were still held in the early 3rd century. It is unclear whether the development of the cult was planned from the beginning. In any case, the veneration of Antinous enabled the Greek population of the empire to celebrate their own identity and at the same time to express their loyalty to Rome, which strengthened the cohesion of the empire.

Jewish uprising

Hadrian stuck to his pacification and stabilization course with regard to external borders and neighbors of the Roman Empire throughout his rule. Nevertheless, there were ultimately serious military conflicts that took place inside the empire, in the province of Judea . There the Bar Kochba uprising broke out in 132 , the suppression of which lasted until 136. After the Jewish War of 66-70 and the Diaspora uprising 116/117, with the foothills of which Hadrian still had to do when he took office, this was the third and last campaign by Roman emperors against the Jewish desire for autonomy and the armed self-assertion associated with it. On this question, Hadrian followed the line taken by his predecessors, which aimed at the subordination of Jews and Christians to Roman laws and norms. Instead of the traditional tax for the Jerusalem temple , which the Romans destroyed in the Jewish War in 71, the Jews were subsequently imposed a corresponding tax for the temple of Jupiter Capitolinus , a continuing stumbling block for all who refused to conform.

The Jewish temple destroyed in AD 70, model in the Orientalis Museum Park ( Berg en Dal )

The subject of a research controversy is whether Hadrian contributed to the outbreak of the uprising by imposing a ban on circumcision , revoking a permit previously given to the Jews to rebuild the destroyed Jerusalem Temple, and resolving to establish Jerusalem as a Roman colony called Aelia Capitolina (which tied the city to his family name) to rebuild. These three reasons for the outbreak of war are named in Roman and Jewish sources or have been deduced from them. According to the current state of research, however, a different picture emerges: the thesis that the building of temples was initially permitted and then forbidden is now considered refuted, the circumcision ban was probably only imposed after the outbreak of the uprising and Aelia Capitolina was founded - if it was actually before the outbreak of war happened - just one of the circumstances that the insurgents found unacceptable. There does not seem to have been any major conflicts between Jews and Romans before, because the Romans were surprised by the uprising. This was not an enterprise of the entire Jewish people, but there was a Roman-friendly and a Roman-hostile direction among the Jews. The Roman friends agreed with the incorporation of the Jewish people into Roman and Greek culture, while the other side radically opposed the assimilation desired by Hadrian for religious reasons. Initially, the rebellion was only started by a possibly relatively small anti-Roman, strictly religiously minded group, later it expanded greatly. According to the Cassius Dios report, the survey had been prepared well in advance by collecting weapons and setting up weapons stores and secret places of retreat.

When the uprising broke out in 132, the two Roman legions stationed there soon proved to be inferior, so that Hadrian ordered parts of the army and military command personnel from other provinces to Judea, including the highly capable commander Sextus Iulius Severus , who arrived at the scene from Britain . It is unclear whether Hadrian himself took part in the expeditio Iudaica until 134 ; some evidence suggests it. Undoubtedly, the enormous mobilization of troops for the fighting in Judea was a reaction to heavy Roman losses. As an indication of this, the fact is also interpreted that Hadrian in a message to the Senate renounced the usual declaration that he himself and the legions are well. The retaliatory campaign of the Romans when they finally regained the upper hand in Judea was merciless. In the fighting, in which almost a hundred villages and mountain festivals had to be taken individually, over 500,000 Jews were killed, the country remained deserted and destroyed. From Iudaea the province was Syria Palaestina . Hadrian valued the eventual victory so highly that in December 135 he received the second Imperial acclamation; but he renounced a triumph .

The Torah and the Jewish calendar were banned, Jewish scholars were executed, and scrolls that were sacred to Jews were burned on the Temple Mount . Statues of Jupiter and the emperor were erected at the former temple shrine . The Jews were initially not allowed to enter Aelia Capitolina . They were later granted entry once a year on Av 9 to mourn defeat, temple destruction, and displacement.

Death and succession

At the beginning of 136, at the age of sixty, Hadrian fell so seriously ill that he had to give up his usual routine and from then on remained largely confined to bed. The cause may be hardening of the arteries of the coronary arteries caused by high blood pressure , which could ultimately have resulted in death from necrosis in the limbs with insufficient blood supply and from suffocation. The problem of succession planning arose urgently. In the second half of the year, Hadrian presented Lucius Ceionius Commodus to the public , who was the acting consul but a surprise candidate. He was the son-in-law of Avidius Nigrinus, one of the four commanders of Trajan executed after Hadrian's accession to power. Ceionius had a five-year-old son who was included in the probable line of succession. Hadrian's motives for this choice are just as unclear as the role he envisaged for his alleged nephew Marcus Aurelius . At the instigation of the emperor, Mark Aurel was betrothed to a daughter of Ceionius in 136 and, at the age of fifteen, was entrusted with the office of temporary city prefect (praefectus urbi feriarum Latinarum causa) during the Latin festival .

The adoption of Ceionius, who with the Caesar title was now officially a candidate for power, was publicly celebrated through games and money donations to the people and soldiers. Afterwards, the presumptive successor, who was not yet militarily well-versed and equipped by Hadrian with the tribunician power and the imperium proconsulare for Upper and Lower Pannonia, went to the army units stationed on the latently troubled Danube border . From Hadrian's point of view, he would like to gain particularly rewarding military experience there and establish important contacts with the management level. In terms of health, the person who had probably been suffering from tuberculosis for a long time was not in good hands in the harsh Pannonian climate. After returning to Rome, Ceionius died on January 1, 138 after severe, prolonged blood loss.

Tiber with pons Aelius

This first, now unsuccessful succession plan found little understanding in Rome. The removal of Hadrian's brother-in-law Servianus and his nephew Fuscus, who were suspected of their own ambitions to rule, caused bitterness. Hadrian was forced to quickly reorganize his succession in view of his frailty. On January 24, 138, his 62nd birthday, he announced his intentions to prominent senators from his sickbed, which culminated in the official act of adoption on February 25: Antoninus Pius was a new Caesar , who had been a member of Hadrian's advisory staff for a long time, and Antoninus Pius was also a consul he was far less experienced in the military than in administrative matters, but as a proven proconsul of the province of Asia , he was also respected in Senate circles. Hadrian connected the adoption of Antoninus to the condition that the new Caesar, in one overall process, carried out the double adoption of Marcus Aurelius and the Ceionius offspring Lucius Verus , which happened on the same day. Whether Mark Aurel, nine years older of the two adoptive brothers, was already chosen by Hadrian as the future successor of Antoninus is controversial in research. In any case, Antoninus himself established this sequence by having Marcus Aurelius break the engagement to the Ceionius daughter after Hadrian's death and giving him his own daughter to wife.

Hadrian's own physical condition became increasingly unbearable, so that he wanted the end more and more urgently. With his body bloated from water retention and tormented by shortness of breath, he looked for ways to end the agony. He repeatedly asked individuals around him to get him poison or a dagger, instructed a slave to thrust the sword into his body at the point indicated, and reacted angrily to the general refusal to cause his death prematurely. Antoninus did not allow this, however, because he, the adopted son, would otherwise have been regarded as a patricide. However, it was also in the legitimacy of his own imminent rule that Hadrian did not end by suicide, with which he classified himself among the "bad emperors" such as Otho and Nero , forfeiting deification and thus forfeiting Antoninus the status of divi filius ("son of the deified") ) would have withheld.

Hadrian's mausoleum

In the last phase of Hadrian's life, marked by illness and the expectation of death, his animula poem , which is considered authentic, belongs :

animula vagula blandula,
hospes comesque corporis,
quo nunc abibis? in loca
pallidula rigida nubila -
nec ut soles dabis iocos.
Little soul, wandering, tender,
Guest and companion of the body,
Where are you going to disappear now? To places
who are pale, rigid and gloomy,
And you won't joke like you used to anymore.

After his last stay in Rome, Hadrian was not brought to his villa in Tibur, but to a country estate in Baiae on the Gulf of Naples, where he passed away on July 10, 138. According to the presentation of the Historia Augusta , Antoninus did not have the ashes of his predecessor immediately transferred from Baiae to Rome, but because of Hadrian's hatred by the people and the Senate, temporarily buried in camera at Cicero's former country seat in Puteoli . However, this is considered unlikely in research. Even a protracted struggle by Antoninus Pius for the deification of Hadrian with a refusing senate hardly seems credible; Although the deceased had bitter enemies, it was advisable for Antoninus to wind up the program of the change of power quickly, and he had all the means necessary for it.


The only narrative source that, according to tradition, was written during Hadrian's lifetime was his autobiography, of which only a prelude letter to Antoninus Pius has survived, in which Hadrian addresses his near end and thanks his successor for his care. The other surviving original testimonies from Hadrian - speeches, letters and rescripts preserved in fragments on stone or papyrus, as well as Latin and Greek poems - represent a considerable collection of material. The coins obtained from Hadrian's principle also provide information.

In the 3rd century Marius Maximus wrote a collection of emperor biographies following the Suetons that had ended with Domitian ; it also contained a biography of Hadrian. This work has not been preserved and is only partially accessible. In several late antique breviaries (for example in the Caesares Aurelius Victors ) only brief information about Hadrian can be found.

The two main sources are the Historia Augusta and the Roman History of Cassius Dio . The latter work is from the 3rd century and in the 69th book relating to Hadrian has only survived in fragments and excerpts from the Byzantine period. However, it is classified as a largely reliable source.

Memorial to Nobel Prize Winner Theodor Mommsen in front of Humboldt University (1909)

The (Vita Hadriani) in the Historia Augusta (HA), which was probably not created until the end of the 4th century, is considered a highly controversial, but most extensive source. Information from sources that are lost today, such as the work of Marius Maximus, have been incorporated here, but the unknown late antique author brought in material which cannot be assumed to come from credible sources, but which is primarily attributable to the historian's creative will. Theodor Mommsen saw the HA as "one of the most wretched messes" among ancient literature.

In his two-volume commentary on Hadriani's vita , Jörg Fündling complied with Mommsen's demand for meticulous examination and commentary on each individual statement through a comprehensive comparison both within the HA vitae and with the available source material outside the HA . In Hadrian's biography, which is ranked among the most reliable HA vites in research, Fündling identified at least a quarter of the total as unreliable, including 18.6 percent as fictional with high certainty and a further 11.2 percent whose source value is is very dubious to look at. With this result, Fündling counteracts a more recent tendency to answer the large number of controversial positions in HA research by "skipping all source problems", "as if these were irrelevant for the content because they were insoluble anyway".



Hadrian's versatility and his sometimes contradicting appearance also determine the spectrum of judgments made about him. In the contemporary context, it is noticeable that Marcus Aurelius does not deal with Hadrian in more detail in the first book of his self-reflections , in which he extensively thanks his important teachers and supporters, nor elsewhere in this collection of thoughts, for whom he did his own advancement through the given adoption arrangement owed to the rule.

Cassius Dio attests Hadrian an overall humane exercise of rule and an affable nature, but also an insatiable ambition that extended to the most diverse areas. Many specialists in various fields would have suffered from his jealousy. The architect Apollodorus, who aroused his anger, he had first sent into exile and later killed. Cassius mentions Dio et al. As characteristic features of Hadrian. a. Excessive precision and intrusive curiosity on the one hand, prudence, generosity and varied skill on the other. Because of the executions at the beginning and at the end of his reign, the people hated him after his death, despite his remarkable achievements in the times in between.

The ancient Christians judged Hadrian negatively in two main ways: because of his suicidal intentions and preparations for crime and because of his homoerotic tendencies, which were clearly evident in relation to Antinous and in the Antinous cult. The divine veneration of Hadrian's lover, classified as a pleasure boy, was so provocative for Christians that Antinous was one of the main targets of Christian attacks on “paganism” until the late 4th century. Tertullian , Origen , Athanasius and Prudentius were particularly offended by Hadrian's relationship with Antinous .

Jörg Fündling thinks that Hadrian's diverse interests and sometimes contradicting traits make it difficult to form a judgment about personality - both for the author of the Historia Augusta and for posterity. The encountered “abundance of intellectual demands and burning ambitions” seems intimidating, while dealing with Hadrian's mistakes and peculiarities relieves the viewer because it leads back to a human dimension. Ultimately, the presentation of the author of the Historia Augusta is an expression of his gratitude for the charms of eccentric personalities. But Hadrian remained hated by many even after his death; the predominantly positive image of the emperor, which still shapes his perception today, seems to have emerged later.

Research history

Remains of the Hadrianeum , today the seat of the Roman stock exchange

Susanne Mortensen gives an overview of the history of research since the publication of the first major Hadrian monograph by Ferdinand Gregorovius in 1851. Ernst Kornemann emphasizes it as being of particular importance in terms of historical impact with his negative judgment on Hadrian's foreign policy and Wilhelm Weber . In a comprehensive analysis of Hadrian's work, Weber came to an overall more balanced judgment, but then, under the influence of the National Socialist “blood and racial doctrine”, also came to “overdrawings and misinterpretations”. Weber saw in Hadrian a typical “Spaniard” “with his contempt for the body, his care for the imperious spirit, his will to the strictest discipline and his urge to surrender to the power of the supernatural in the world, to unite with it, with his organizational power that never pretends to be, always invents new things and strives to realize what has been conceived with new means ”. In 1923 Bernard W. Henderson presented the last extensive Hadrian monograph for decades with The Life and principate of the emperor Hadrian AD 76-138 .

With regard to Hadrian's reception after the Second World War , Mortensen states that there has been an increased specialization on locally or thematically narrowly limited issues. It is characterized by an extremely sober manner of presentation with extensive renunciation of value judgments. Recently, however, daring hypotheses and psychologizing constructs had been put forward; they mainly extended to topics that made a reconstruction of historical reality impossible in the case of incomplete or contradicting sources. For serious research, Mortensen sums up primarily with a view to the areas of foreign policy, military affairs, the promotion of Hellenism and travel activities; as a result of the newly chosen broader perspective, the impression arises that Hadrian was sensitive to the problems of his time and reacted appropriately to grievances and necessities.

Anthony R. Birley laid out with Hadrian in 1997 . The restless emperor has since provided the authoritative presentation of the results of Hadrian's research. Hadrian's admiration for the first Princeps Augustus and his endeavor to present himself as the second Augustus becomes clear . His restless travels made Hadrian the most "visible" emperor the Roman Empire ever had.

Robin Lane Fox completed his portrayal of classical antiquity, which began with the time of Homer , with Hadrian in 2005 , because this ruler himself showed many preferences of classical stamping, but was also the only emperor on his travels to gain an overall picture of the Greco-Roman world firsthand. Lane Fox sees Hadrian in his Panhellenic mission more ambitious than Pericles and finds him most clearly tangible from source documents in the communication with the provinces, from which he constantly had to answer a variety of inputs.

Almost all representations see Hadrian's principality as a turning point or turning point because of the change in foreign policy. Karl Christ emphasizes that Hadrian ordered and tightened the military protective shield of the empire, which had around 60 million inhabitants, and systematically increased the defense readiness of the army, which had 30 legions and around 350 auxiliary troops. He certifies Hadrian a progressive overall concept. The emperor had deliberately brought about the deep turning point. In doing so, he did not just react impulsively to the coincidence of unpredictable catastrophes, but opted for a coherent, new, long-term policy that actually set the development of the empire for decades.

In 2008 the major exhibition Hadrian: Empire and Conflict in London brought the high point of Hadrian's research to date.


A well-known fictional representation of Hadrian is the novel by Marguerite Yourcenar, first published in 1951, I tamed the she-wolf. The memories of the emperor Hadrian . Yourcenar presented a fictional autobiography of Hadrian in first-person form as a novel after many years of examination of the sources. This book has strongly shaped the perception of Hadrian among the wider public and has become an essential part of Hadrian's modern history of reception.


Introductions and general information

  • Anthony R. Birley : Hadrian. The restless emperor. Routledge, London et al. 1997, ISBN 0-415-16544-X (authoritative biography).
    • Anthony R. Birley: Hadrian. The restless emperor. Zabern, Mainz 2006, ISBN 3-8053-3656-X (based on the English-language edition, but heavily shortened and partly reworked. Review see points).
  • Anthony R. Birley: Hadrian to the Antonines. In: Alan K. Bowman, Peter Garnsey, Dominic Rathbone (Eds.): The Cambridge Ancient History . 2nd Edition. Vol. 11, Cambridge 2000, pp. 132-194, especially pp. 132-149.
  • Karl Christ : History of the Roman Empire. From Augustus to Diocletian. CH Beck, Munich 1995 (and more recent editions), pp. 314–332 (standard work on the Roman Empire, but in the meantime partly outdated)
  • Anthony Everitt: Hadrian and the Triumph of Rome. Random House, New York 2009, ISBN 978-1-4000-6662-9 .
  • Jörg Fündling : Commentary on Hadriani's Vita of Historia Augusta (= Antiquitas. Series 4: Contributions to Historia Augusta research, Series 3: Commentaries, volumes 4.1 and 4.2). Habelt, Bonn 2006, ISBN 3-7749-3390-1 (comprehensive analysis of Hadriani's Vita including evaluation of research results on Hadrian; review sehepunkte).
  • Yvonne Joeres, Annette Simonis: Hadrian. In: Peter von Möllendorff , Annette Simonis, Linda Simonis (ed.): Historical figures of antiquity. Reception in literature, art and music (= Der Neue Pauly . Supplements. Volume 8). Metzler, Stuttgart / Weimar 2013, ISBN 978-3-476-02468-8 , Sp. 469-478.
  • Susanne Mortensen: Hadrian. A story of interpretation. Habelt, Bonn 2004, ISBN 3-7749-3229-8 (overview of Hadrian's research since the mid-19th century).
  • Thorsten Opper: Hadrian: power man and patron. Darmstadt 2009, ISBN 978-3-8062-2291-3 (English original edition: Hadrian: Empire and conflict , London 2008).
  • Christian Seebacher: Between Augustus and Antinous. Tradition and innovation in Hadrian's Principle . Steiner, Stuttgart 2020, ISBN 978-3-515-12586-4 .
  • Michael Zahrnt : Hadrian. In: Manfred Clauss (Ed.): The Roman Emperors. 55 historical portraits from Caesar to Justinian. 4th updated edition. CH Beck, Munich 2010, ISBN 978-3-406-60911-4 , pp. 124-136.


  • Mary Taliaferro Boatwright: Hadrian and the City of Rome. Princeton University Press, Princeton 1987, ISBN 0-691-03588-1 .
  • Heiner Knell : The emperor's new buildings. Hadrian's architecture in Rome, Athens and Tivoli. Zabern, Mainz 2008, ISBN 978-3-8053-3772-4 ( review H-Soz-u-Kult).
  • Dietrich Willers : Hadrian's Panhellenic Program. Archaeological contributions to the redesign of Athens by Hadrian. Association of Friends of Ancient Art, Basel 1990, ISBN 3-909064-16-7 .

Religious politics, Bar Kochba uprising

Web links

Wikisource: Hadrian  - Sources and Full Texts
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  1. Opper 2009, p. 40 f.
  2. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, pp. 233, 260 with reference to Epitome de Caesaribus 14.2.
  3. Birley 2006, p. 10 f.
  4. ^ Cassius Dio 69.1 .
  5. Birley 2006, p. 13 f.
  6. The incident reported in the Historia Augusta ( Vita Hadriani 2,6), according to which Hadrian's carriage was attacked by servants of Servianus and made unfit to drive in order to prevent Hadrian from being the first to inform Trajan about the proclamation as emperor, Jörg Fündling points out but back as unbelievable (Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, pp. 289–294).
  7. On the dating problems and approaches with regard to Hadrian's official career in the research literature, see Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, pp. 334–351.
  8. For problematization and weighting, see Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 341.
  9. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 335.
  10. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 351. Mortensen arrives at a similar result with regard to Hadrian's career advancement through Trajan in her synopsis of the more recent research status (p. 35/37).
  11. Mortensen 2004, p. 252 f.
  12. Mortensen 2004, p. 249.
  13. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 4,5.
  14. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 14.11. Quoted from Mortensen 2004, p. 288.
  15. Cassius Dio 69.3.2 and 69.5.1 .
  16. Mortensen 2004, p. 289 with reference to Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 20,8.
  17. Fündling comments: "Taking the HA position at its word would mean giving Hadrian a 'phone book' with a good 40,000 names for the first decade of his rule alone, which he could have called up at any time ..." (Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, P. 930 f.).
  18. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 20:10.
  19. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 20:11.
  20. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 932.
  21. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 4.3; Karl Strobel: Emperor Traian. An epoch in world history. Regensburg 2010, p. 401.
  22. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 382.
  23. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 384; Karl Strobel: Emperor Traian. An epoch in world history. Regensburg 2010, p. 401.
  24. See also Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire from Augustus to Constantine , Munich 1988, p. 314.
  25. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, pp. 380-387.
  26. ^ Karl Strobel: Emperor Traian. An epoch in world history. Regensburg 2010, p. 403.
  27. Mortensen 2004, p. 125.
  28. Mortensen 2004, p. 132.
  29. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 400.
  30. ^ Karl Strobel: Emperor Traian. An epoch in world history. Regensburg 2010, p. 405 f.
  31. Mortensen 2004, p. 179.
  32. Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire. From Augustus to Constantine. 5th edition, Munich 2005, p. 320; Mortensen 2004, pp. 73/190.
  33. Birley 2006, pp. 36/69 f .; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 401.
  34. Michael Zahrnt: Hadrian. In: Manfred Clauss (Ed.): The Roman Emperors. 55 historical portraits from Caesar to Justinian. 4th updated edition, Munich 2010, pp. 124-136, here: pp. 127 f.
  35. Knell 2008, p. 112.
  36. Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire. From Augustus to Constantine. 5th edition. Munich 2005, p. 321 f.
  37. Michael Zahrnt: Hadrian. In: Manfred Clauss (Ed.): The Roman Emperors. 55 historical portraits from Caesar to Justinian. 4th updated edition, Munich 2010, pp. 124–136, here: p. 133.
  38. Cassius Dio 69,6,3 ; Birley 2006, p. 57. This story, which came from the tyrant topic and which was told almost word for word about Demetrios Poliorketes (cf. Plutarch , Vita Demetr. 42,7), can therefore hardly be regarded as historical.
  39. Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire. From Augustus to Constantine. 5th edition. Munich 2005, p. 322.
  40. Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire. From Augustus to Constantine. 5th edition. Munich 2005, p. 323.
  41. Birley 2006, p. 69.
  42. Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire. From Augustus to Constantine. 5th edition, Munich 2005, p. 321.
  43. Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire. From Augustus to Constantine. 5th edition. Munich 2005, p. 319; Cassius Dio, 69,2,5 f. ; Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 7.1-4.
  44. Detailed explanations of various unsecured interpretative approaches in Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 1005-1024.
  45. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 20: 1.
  46. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 9.7.
  47. Cassius Dio 69,5,2 .
  48. Cassius Dio 69.7.3 ; Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 16:10.
  49. Mortensen 2004, p. 87.
  50. Cassius Dio 69,6,1f.
  51. Mortensen 2004, p. 193.
  52. Mortensen 2004, pp. 191 and 193.
  53. Mortensen 2004, p. 194.
  54. ^ Cassius Dio: Roman History 69 : 9 : 1-4; Birley 2006, p. 42; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, pp. 544-572, in a critical examination of the military excursion in Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 10.2-11.1.
  55. Birley 2006, p. 41.
  56. Opper 2009, p. 79.
  57. Birley 2006, p. 48 f.
  58. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 622–625 provides a compilation of different route considerations developed in research.
  59. Birley 2006, p. 96.
  60. Mortensen 2004, p. 182, with the note that neither the chronology nor the route of this trip can be precisely determined. Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 642 states that Hadrian was 'lost' in a documentary way after the beginning of 132 and only reappeared in Rome on May 5, 134.
  61. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 676.
  62. Mortensen 2004, pp. 197, 199.
  63. Mortensen 2004, p. 195/201 f.
  64. Michael Zahrnt: Hadrian. In: Manfred Clauss (Ed.): The Roman Emperors. 55 historical portraits from Caesar to Justinian. 4th updated edition, Munich 2010, pp. 124–136, here: p. 128.
  65. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 258.
  66. Birley 2006, p. 8; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 259.
  67. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 1128–1131; Paul Zanker: The Mask of Socrates: The Image of the Intellectual in Ancient Art. Munich 1995, pp. 206-221.
  68. ^ Karl Strobel: Emperor Traian. An epoch in world history. Regensburg 2010, p. 400.
  69. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 16:10; Birley 2006, p. 8; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 804-810.
  70. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 804 f./807.
  71. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 627.
  72. Birley 2006, p. 77.
  73. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 263.
  74. Mortensen 2004, p. 228 f.
  75. Birley 2006, p. 78 and Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 634 refer as historical models to the popular resolution brought about by Pericles to hold a congress of all Greeks united against the Persians in Athens, which then failed due to the boycott of Sparta (Plutarch, Pericles 17).
  76. Michael Zahrnt: Hadrian. In: Manfred Clauss (Ed.): The Roman Emperors. 55 historical portraits from Caesar to Justinian. 4th updated edition, Munich 2010, pp. 124–136, here: p. 130.
  77. Knell 2008, p. 78; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 631.
  78. Götz Lahusen: Roman portraits. Client - functions - locations. Scientific Book Society, Darmstadt 2010, pp. 194f.
  79. Opper 2009, p. 70.
  80. Mortensen 2004, p. 237.
  81. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 632-634.
  82. Opper 2009, p. 100.
  83. Knell 2008, p. 17.
  84. Cassius Dio 69,3,2 .
  85. Cassius Dio 69.4.2 ; Translation after Opper 2009, p. 102.
  86. Knell 2008, p. 111.
  87. ^ Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, P. 902. Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire. From Augustus to Constantine. 5th edition. Munich 2005, p. 323 refers to a staff of construction specialists in his company, who stimulated construction activity throughout the Reich. Opper 2009, p. 103 concludes: "We can therefore describe him as surrounded by a crowd of architects, engineers and other highly capable specialists [...] and involved in initiating projects, checking plans and sketches, always committed, challenging, critical , demanding. "
  88. Knell 2008, p. 111.
  89. Opper 2009, pp. 112/125; Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 891 f.
  90. Opper 2009, pp. 101/109.
  91. Opper 2009, p. 101.
  92. Opper 2009, p. 125.
  93. Knell 2008, p. 112.
  94. ^ Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 910; Opper 2009, p. 102.
  95. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 903.
  96. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 19:12; Opper 2009, p. 125 f. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 901-904, here: 903 f. doubts this: “The heaviest known masses that were moved in one piece during this time are the approx. 50 Roman foot long columns from the Temple of Venus and Roma themselves - their weight is estimated at approx. 100 tons, safe before final processing a bit more. Under ancient conditions it is hardly conceivable that the even greater mass of the Colossus could (instead of being dismantled) have made the journey in the vertical [...]. [...] In all likelihood, stantem atque suspensum is thus an invention [...] "
  97. Opper 2009, p. 132.
  98. Opper 2009, p. 149.
  99. Opper 2009, p. 153.
  100. After renovations and construction of a connecting passage to the Vatican , the Passetto , it became known as Castel Sant'Angelo . It served the popes as a protective fortress against the incursions of foreign powers that were frequent in earlier times, for example the Sacco di Roma in 1527.
  101. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 899; Opper 2009, p. 208. Knell 2008, p. 112 thinks that Hadrian's mausoleum is so similar to Augustus' mausoleum, as if it were intended to indicate an almost fraternal relationship between the two buildings and their tombs.
  102. Opper 2009, p. 213.
  103. Opper 2009, p. 215.
  104. Knell 2008, p. 113.
  105. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 687/689.
  106. Cassius Dio 69,11,4 ; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 690.
  107. Fündling 2006, p. 692.
  108. Cassius Dio 69,11,2 f. ; Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 14.6.
  109. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 692-695; Birley 2006, p. 90.
  110. Birley 1997, Vol. 4.2, pp. 692-695; Birley 2006, p. 249.
  111. Birley 2006, p. 90 f.
  112. Opper 2009, p. 174.
  113. Michael Zahrnt: Hadrian. In: Manfred Clauss (Ed.): The Roman Emperors. 55 historical portraits from Caesar to Justinian. 4th updated edition, Munich 2010, pp. 124–136, here: p. 135.
  114. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 696/698.
  115. Opper 2009, p. 177.
  116. Perhaps symbolic for the immortality and rebirth hopes of the princeeps. (Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 698.)
  117. Opper 2009, p. 186. Seven statues of Antinous alone come from Tibur (Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 700).
  118. ^ Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 697.
  119. Opper 2009, p. 189.
  120. Opper 2009, p. 188.
  121. Opper 2009, p. 191.
  122. Opper 2009, p. 90.
  123. Cassius Dio 69, 12, 1 f. ; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 670-74; Birley 2006, p. 95; Opper 2009, p. 90.
  124. Peter Schäfer: The Bar Kokhba uprising. Tübingen 1981, pp. 29-34.
  125. See the relevant studies by Peter Kuhlmann: Religion and Memory. Göttingen 2002, pp. 133-136 and Peter Schäfer: Der Bar Kokhba-Aufstand , Tübingen 1981, pp. 38-50 and Aharon Oppenheimer: The Ban on Circumcision as a Cause of the Revolt: A Reconsideration . In: Peter Schäfer (Ed.): The Bar Kokhba War Reconsidered , Tübingen 2003, pp. 55-69 and Ra'anan Abusch: Negotiating Difference: Genital Mutilation in Roman Slave Law and the History of the Bar Kokhba Revolt . In: Peter Schäfer (Ed.): The Bar Kokhba War Reconsidered , Tübingen 2003, pp. 71–91. See also Giovanni Battista Bazzana: The Bar Kokhba Revolt and Hadrian's Religious Policy. In: Marco Rizzi (Ed.): Hadrian and the Christians , Berlin 2010, pp. 85–109.
  126. Peter Schäfer: The Bar Kokhba uprising. Tübingen 1981, pp. 29-50.
  127. Peter Schäfer: The Bar Kokhba uprising , Tübingen 1981, pp. 47-50.
  128. Cassius Dio 69,12,3 ; Opper 2009, p. 89.
  129. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 676.
  130. Cassius Dio 69,14,3 ; Birley 2006, p. 101.
  131. Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire. 5th edition. Munich 2005, p. 328.
  132. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 23.1; Cassius Dio 69.17.1 ; Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 1004.
  133. Fündling 2006, p. 1017.
  134. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 1074 f.
  135. Birley 2006, p. 108.
  136. Opper 2009, p. 217; Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 1042 f.
  137. According to Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 23:14, Hadrian complained about the unstable health of his chosen successor: “We leaned against a ramshackle wall and threw out four hundred million sesterces that we donated to the people and the soldiers on the occasion of Commodus' adoption . "
  138. Cassius Dio 69.20 ; Birley 2006, p. 110; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 1057.
  139. Historia Augusta , Marcus Aurelius 6.2; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 1066.
  140. Cassius Dio 69.22 ; Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 24.8; Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 1088-1090.
  141. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 1089 f.
  142. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 25. Cf. also Jens Holzhausen : Hadrians nous and his animula (PDF; 734 kB). In: Rheinisches Museum für Philologie 143, 2000, pp. 96–109. The diminutive animula (“little soul”, from animasoul ”) could be attuned to a “tone of friendly condescension” of the “rational self” towards the soul; see Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 1116.
  143. Historia Augusta , Hadrianus 25.7; Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 1106 f.
  144. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, pp. 1108 / 1153-56.
  145. Birley 2006, p. 5.
  146. Der Neue Pauly , Supplementary Volume 8, 2013, Col. 471f .; Giovanni Battista Bazzana: The Bar Kokhba Revolt and Hadrian's Religious Policy . In: Marco Rizzi (Ed.): Hadrian and the Christians , Berlin 2010, p. 88.
  147. Theodor Mommsen: The Scriptores historiae Augustae. In: Hermes , Volume 25, 1890, pp. 228-292, here: p. 229 ( online ).
  148. Theodor Mommsen: The Scriptores historiae Augustae. In: Hermes , Volume 25, 1890, pp. 228–292, here: p. 281.
  149. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 85.
  150. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 7.
  151. Birley 2006, p. 112. Fündling registers a handful of rather incidental mentions of Hadrian's names in Mark Aurel's self-contemplations : 4.33; 8.5; 8.25; 8.37; 10.27 (Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.2, p. 1076).
  152. Cassius Dio 69.2 to 5 .
  153. Cassius Dio 69.23 .
  154. ^ Fündling 2006, vol. 4.2, p. 697.
  155. Mortensen 2004, p. 314.
  156. Fündling 2006, Vol. 4.1, p. 208.
  157. Mortensen 2004, pp. 11-13.
  158. Quoted from Mortensen 2004, p. 13.
  159. Mortensen 2004, p. 15.
  160. Mortensen 2004, p. 350.
  161. Mortensen 2004, p. 352.
  162. See Mortensen 2004, p. 19.
  163. ^ Anthony R. Birley: Hadrian. The restless emperor. London 1999, p. 307; German edition: Birley 2006, p. 113.
  164. Robin Lane Fox: The Classic World. A world history from Homer to Hadrian. Stuttgart 2010, pp. 16-18, 22 (English original edition: The Classical World. An Epic History from Homer to Hadrian , London 2005).
  165. Karl Christ: History of the Roman Empire. From Augustus to Constantine. 5th edition. Munich 2005, pp. 318, 325.
  166. Opper 2009, p. 29; Anthony R. Birley: Hadrian. The restless emperor. London 1997, p. 9 and p. 314, note 13.
predecessor Office successor
Trajan Roman emperor
Antoninus Pius
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