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Gaius Marius "the Younger" (c. 110 – 82 BC) was a Roman republican general and politician who became
consul Consul (abbrev. ''cos.''; Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Roman ...
in 82 BC with Papirius Carbo. He fought in
Sulla's civil war Sulla's civil war was fought between the Roman general Lucius Cornelius Sulla Lucius Cornelius Sulla Felix (; 138–78 BC), commonly known as Sulla, was a Ancient Romans, Roman List of Roman generals, general and Politician, statesman. He w ...
. He committed suicide that same year at
Praeneste Palestrina (ancient ''Praeneste''; grc, Πραίνεστος, ''Prainestos'') is a modern Italian city and ''comune The (; plural: ) is a basic Administrative division, constituent entity of Italy, roughly equivalent to a township or mun ...
, after his defeat by
Sulla Lucius Cornelius Sulla Felix (; 138–78 BC), commonly known as Sulla, was a Roman general A general officer is an officer of high rank in the armies, and in some nations' air forces, space forces, or marines Marines or naval infan ...

Sulla
and during the city's capture by
Quintus Lucretius Afella Quintus Lucretius Afella"''Horror vacui'' in Lucretian biography", ''Leeds International Classical Studies'' 1.1 (2002), p. 11 (and note 51) was a Roman general who served under the command of Lucius Cornelius Sulla during Sulla's second march on Ro ...
.


Biography

Marius the Younger was the son of the
Gaius Marius Gaius Marius (; – 13 January 86 BC) was a Roman general and statesman. Victor of the and wars, he held the office of an unprecedented seven times during his career. He was also noted for his of . He set the precedent for the shift fro ...
who was seven times consul and a famous military commander. His mother,
Julia Julia is usually a feminine given name. It is a Latinate feminine form of the name Julio (given name), Julio and Julius. (For further details on etymology, see wikt:Iulius#Latin, Wiktionary entry “Julius”.) The given name ''Julia'' had been ...
, was an aunt of
Julius Caesar Gaius Julius Caesar (; 12 July 100 BC – 15 March 44 BC) was a Roman Roman or Romans most often refers to: *, the capital city of Italy *, Roman civilization from 8th century BC to 5th century AD *, the people of ancient Rome *', shortened ...

Julius Caesar
. In his youth, Marius was educated with
Titus Pomponius Atticus Titus Pomponius Atticus ( – 31 March 32 BC; also known as Quintus Caecilius Pomponianus) was a Roman editor, banker, and patron of letters, best known for his correspondence and close friendship with prominent Roman statesman Marcus Tullius ...
and
Marcus Tullius Cicero Marcus Tullius Cicero ( ; ; 3 January 106 BC – 7 December 43 BC) was a Roman Roman or Romans most often refers to: *, the capital city of Italy *, Roman civilization from 8th century BC to 5th century AD *, the people of ancient ...

Marcus Tullius Cicero
by Greek tutors. During the Social War, he served under
Lucius Porcius Cato Lucius Porcius Cato was a Roman Republic, Roman general and politician who became Roman consul, consul in 89 BC alongside Gnaeus Pompeius Strabo. He died at the Battle of Fucine Lake, possibly at the hands of Gaius Marius the Younger. Biography Lu ...
, which one source claims Marius killed at the
Battle of Fucine Lake The Battle of Fucine Lake was fought in 89 BC between a Roman army and a rebel force during the Social War. Lucius Porcius Cato Lucius Porcius Cato was a Roman Republic, Roman general and politician who became Roman consul, consul in 89 BC along ...
over Cato's claims that Cato's achievements were on par with the elder Marius's victory over the
Cimbri The Cimbri (Greek Κίμβροι, ''Kímbroi''; Latin ''Cimbri'') were an ancient tribe in Europe. Ancient authors described them variously as a Celts, Celtic people (or Gauls, Gaulish), Germanic peoples, Germanic people, or even Cimmerian. Severa ...
. Seeking to strengthen his political alliances, the elder Marius married his son to Licinia, a daughter of
Lucius Licinius Crassus Lucius Licinius Crassus (140–91 BC) was a Roman orator and statesman. He was considered the greatest orator of his day, most notably by his pupil Cicero. Crassus is also famous as one of the main characters in Cicero's work ''De Oratore'', a drama ...
. Due to the political turmoil launched by his father in 88 BC to strip his rival
Lucius Cornelius Sulla Lucius Cornelius Sulla Felix (; 138–78 BC), commonly known as Sulla, was a Ancient Romans, Roman List of Roman generals, general and Politician, statesman. He won the first large-scale civil war in Roman history, and became the first man of Rom ...
of command of the Roman forces in the
First Mithridatic War The First Mithridatic War (89–85 BC) was a war challenging the Roman Republic The Roman Republic ( la, Rēs pūblica Rōmāna ) was a state of the ancient Rome, classical Roman civilization, run through res publica, public Representation ...
, the younger Marius accompanied his father into exile when Sulla unexpectedly marched on Rome, forcing them both to flee. At
Ostia
Ostia
, young Marius went on ahead of his father and sailed to Africa. There he went to the court of
Hiempsal II Hiempsal II was a king of Numidia (ruled 88 BC - 60 BC). He was the son of Gauda, half-brother of Jugurtha, and was the father of Juba I. In 88 BC, after the triumph of Lucius Cornelius Sulla Lucius Cornelius Sulla Felix (; 138–78 BC), co ...
of
Numidia Numidia (Berber Berber or Berbers may refer to: Culture * Berbers Berbers or ''Imazighen'' ( ber, translit=Imaziɣen, ⵉⵎⴰⵣⵉⵖⵏ, ⵎⵣⵗⵏ; singular: , ) are an ethnic group mostly concentrated in North Africa, specifica ...

Numidia
to seek his help against Sulla, but the king decided to hold him captive instead. He managed to escape with the help of one of Hiempsal's concubines whom the young Marius had seduced. He then joined up with his father who had also come to Africa, and they escaped to the
Kerkennah Islands Kerkennah Islands ( aeb, قرقنة '; Ancient Greek: Κέρκιννα Cercinna) are a group of islands lying off the east coast of Tunisia in the Gulf of Gabès, at . The Islands are low-lying, being no more than Above mean sea level, above sea l ...
. Learning of Cinna's fight to retain his consulship in 87 BC, father and son returned to Rome, where Marius the elder took control of the situation, gathering an army of slaves and gladiators, and murdering his enemies, both real and imagined. According to
Cassius Dio Lucius Cassius Dio (; ) or Dio Cassius ( ''Dion Kassios'')), Cassius Lucius Dio or Cassius Claudius Dio; alleged to have the ' (nickname) Cocceianus was a Roman statesman and historian of Greek and Roman origin. He published 80 volumes of the ...
, the younger Marius inaugurated his father's seventh consulship by murdering one
plebeian tribune Tribune of the plebs, tribune of the people or plebeian tribune ( la, tribunus plebis) was the first office of the Roman state that was open to the plebeians The plebeians, also called plebs, were, in ancient Rome In historiography, anci ...
and sending his head to the newly installed consuls, while having another tribune thrown from the heights of the
Capitoline Hill The Capitolium or Capitoline Hill ( ; it, Campidoglio ; la, Mons Capitolinus ), between the Forum Forum (plural forums or fora) may refer to: Common uses * Forum (legal), designated space for public expression in the United States *For ...
. He also banished two
praetor Praetor ( , ), also pretor, was the granted by the government of to a man acting in one of two official capacities: (i) the commander of an , and (ii) as an elected ' (magistrate), assigned to discharge various duties. The functions of the magi ...
s, ordering that neither should receive fire or water from any Roman citizen. When his father died of natural causes shortly after taking office, the young Marius assumed leadership of his father's adherents and clients, although overall control of the Marian faction was held by Cinna, who was elected consul on consecutive years until his death in 84 BC. Marius minor was elected consul for 82 BC and deployed on the frontiers of Latium to oppose Sulla, who had conquered the southern part of Italy after landing in
Brundisium Brindisi ( , ; scn, label=Salentino, Brindisino, Brìnnisi; la, Brundisium; grc, Βρεντέσιον, translit=Brentésion; cms, Brunda) is a city in the region of Apulia in southern Italy, the capital of the province of Brindisi, on the co ...
the prior year. This was a political move by
Gnaeus Papirius Carbo Gnaeus Papirius Carbo (c. 129 – 82 BC) was thrice Roman consul, consul of the Roman Republic. Life A member of the Papirius Carbo, Carbones of the plebeian gens Papiria, and nephew of Gaius Papirius Carbo (consul 120 BC), Gaius Papirius Carbo ...
, his consular colleague and the new leader of the Marians after Cinna died, to drum up popular support and enthusiasm for the war against Sulla; Marius was much too young and had not held the prerequisite magistracies to be a legally elected consul. Two talented and better-qualified men among the Marian faction, his cousin Marius Gratidianus and
Quintus Sertorius Quintus Sertorius (c. 126 – 73 BC) was a Roman general and statesman who led Sertorian War, a large-scale rebellion against the Roman Senate on the Iberian peninsula. He had been a prominent member of the Populares, populist faction of Lucius Co ...
, were passed over in favor of the younger Marius "in the interest of unity". Many of the old veterans from the elder Marius's former armies came out of retirement and flocked to the younger Marius's side, and, by the battle of Sacriportus, his army numbered eighty-five cohorts. At the Battle of Sacriportus, in 82 BC,
Sulla Lucius Cornelius Sulla Felix (; 138–78 BC), commonly known as Sulla, was a Roman general A general officer is an officer of high rank in the armies, and in some nations' air forces, space forces, or marines Marines or naval infan ...

Sulla
and his army defeated the army of Marius. Marius with around 7,000 surviving troops retreated to the fortress city of
Praeneste Palestrina (ancient ''Praeneste''; grc, Πραίνεστος, ''Prainestos'') is a modern Italian city and ''comune The (; plural: ) is a basic Administrative division, constituent entity of Italy, roughly equivalent to a township or mun ...
, along with the treasury of the Capitoline temple. Sulla's lieutenant
Quintus Lucretius Afella Quintus Lucretius Afella"''Horror vacui'' in Lucretian biography", ''Leeds International Classical Studies'' 1.1 (2002), p. 11 (and note 51) was a Roman general who served under the command of Lucius Cornelius Sulla during Sulla's second march on Ro ...
, conducted the siege, After his defeat, Marius gave orders to allies in Rome to kill a number of Sullan supporters before Rome was captured by Sulla, including , the ex-consul Lucius Domitius, Publius Antistius and Gaius Carbo. Although both
Gnaeus Papirius Carbo Gnaeus Papirius Carbo (c. 129 – 82 BC) was thrice Roman consul, consul of the Roman Republic. Life A member of the Papirius Carbo, Carbones of the plebeian gens Papiria, and nephew of Gaius Papirius Carbo (consul 120 BC), Gaius Papirius Carbo ...
and
Lucius Junius Brutus DamasippusLucius Junius Brutus Damasippus was a Roman Republic, Roman commander during Sulla's civil wars. When Pompey rebelled, Brutus was one of the three commanders sent against him. In an unnamed battle, the first of Pompey’s career, Brutus was defeated. ...
attempted to break the siege, they were unsuccessful, with relief forces being intercepted and destroyed en route. After receiving news of Sulla's victory at the Battle of the Colline Gate, Marius made one final attempt to escape, this time by digging a tunnel under the walls, but the attempt was uncovered. Marius committed suicide so as not to fall into enemy hands. In 45 BC, a man referred to as
Pseudo-Marius Pseudo-Marius (also referred to as Amatius, Herophilus, Chamates, or the false Marius; died 13 April 44 BC) was a man who claimed to be the son of Gaius Marius the Younger, and therefore the grandson of the famous Roman general Gaius Marius. He was ...
appeared in Rome, claiming to be the son of the younger Marius.Cicero, ''Letters to Atticus'' xii. 49, xiv. 6–8; Cicero, ''Philippicae'' i. 2; Valerius Maximus, ix. 15. § 2; Appian, ''Civil Wars'' iii. 2, 3; Livy, ''Epit.'' 116; Nicolaus of Damascus, ''Life of Augustus'' c. 14. p. 258, ed. Coraes.


Notes


References

* * * * * {{DEFAULTSORT:Marius, Gaius the Younger 1st-century BC births 82 BC deaths 1st-century BC Roman consuls Ancient Roman generals Ancient Roman outlaws Ancient Romans who committed suicide Gaius the Younger Populares
Year of birth uncertain This category contains individuals whose year of birth is uncertain or disputed. {{CatAutoTOC Articles missing birth or death information Uncertain ...