The Info List - Alpes Poeninae

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Alpes Poeninae
Alpes Poeninae
[alˈpeːs ˈpoe̯nɪnae̯], also known as Alpes Graiae, was a small Alpine province of the Roman Empire, one of three such provinces in the western Alps
between Italy
and Gaul. It comprised the Val d' Aosta
region (Italy) and the Canton Valais (Switzerland). Its strongest indigenous tribe were the Salassi. Their territory was annexed by emperor Augustus
in 15 BC. Its chief city was Augusta Praetoria Salassorum (Aosta).


1 Etymology 2 History 3 Gallery 4 References

Etymology[edit] The province was named for poeninus mons, the Roman name of the Great St Bernard Pass. Near the pass was a sanctuary dedicated to Jupiter Poeninus.[1] Because the name Poeninus is similar to Poenus (Latin for "Carthaginian"), some Roman authors inferred that the Carthaginian general Hannibal
crossed this part of the Alps
in his famous march on Italy
in 218 BC, using either the Great St Bernard
Great St Bernard
or Little St Bernard passes. The Roman historian Livy
explains that Poeninus was actually a corruption of Penninus, the name of a deity worshipped by a local tribe. Livy
adds that it was implausible that Hannibal
took such a northerly route, as these high mountain passes would have been inaccessible at the time.[2] Tacitus mentions the Alpes Poeninae
Alpes Poeninae
in connection with the movements of Otho.[3] Most historians agree, according to Polybius
that Hannibal's army passed through the Alps
via the region of the Segusii, and the pass known today as Montgenèvre. History[edit] After the region was conquered in 15 BC, it was incorporated into Raetia, a large district which stretched from the central Alps
to the Danube. The population included a number of Celtic tribes, including the Nantuates and Seduni on the northern side of the St. Bernard Pass and the Salassi on the southern side. By the time of Emperor Claudius
(41-54 AD) the tribes were generally Romanized and the Vallis Poenina district was removed from the Raetia et Vindolicia province. Vallis Poenina included much of the valley north of the St. Bernard Pass. A new capital civitas was established near the ruins of Octodurus (civitas Vallensium now Martigny) and the residents enjoyed at least the protections of the Latin Rights. The Vallis Poenina district was merged with the Alpes Graiae or Alpes Atrectianae district to form the Alpes Graiae et Poeninae province.[4] By the 3rd century AD there were several senator ranked families living in the province. Under the reforms of Diocletian, the province became part of the Diocese of Gaulliae. In 381, the first Bishop
of the region, Theodul, was mentioned. After the Fall of the Western Roman Empire, the region was invaded by the Burgundians
and incorporated into their kingdom. In 574 it was invaded by the Lombards and came under their authority. The Roman name and borders fell into disuse and by the Dark Ages it was part of Sapaudia. Gallery[edit]

Amphitheater in Martigny

Roman road in Martigny

Traces of the amphitheater in Aosta


Triumphal arch in Aosta


^ Wilkes, J.; S. Parker; R. Bagnall; W. Harris; A. Esmonde-Cleary; C. Wells; J. Drinkwater; R. Knapp; S. Mitchell; B. Z. Lund; R. Talbert; M. E. Downs; M. Joann McDaniel; J. Becker; S. Gillies; T. Elliott. "Places: 982257 (Alpes Graiae et Poeninae)". Pleiades. Retrieved November 1, 2014.  ^ Livy
XXI.38 ^ Tac. Historiae 1.87.2 http://latin.packhum.org/loc/1351/4/86/93-101 ^ Vallis Poenina in German, French and Italian in the online Historical Dictionary of Switzerland.

- Istoriài - XXXIV.X

v t e

Provinces of the early Roman Empire
Roman Empire
(117 AD)

Achaea Aegyptus Africa proconsularis Alpes Cottiae Alpes Maritimae Alpes Poeninae Arabia Petraea Armenia Asia Assyria Bithynia
and Pontus Britannia Cappadocia Cilicia Corsica
and Sardinia Crete and Cyrenaica Cyprus Dacia Dalmatia Epirus Galatia Gallia Aquitania Gallia Belgica Gallia Lugdunensis Gallia Narbonensis Germania Inferior Germania Superior Hispania Baetica Hispania Tarraconensis Italia † Iudaea Lusitania Lycia
et Pamphylia Macedonia Mauretania Caesariensis Mauretania Tingitana Mesopotamia Moesia
Inferior Moesia
Superior Noricum Pannonia Inferior Pannonia Superior Raetia Sicilia Syria Thracia

was never constituted as a province, instead retaining a special juridical status until Diocletian's reforms.

v t e

Late Roman provinces (4th–7th centuries AD)


As found in the Notitia Dignitatum. Provincial administration reformed and dioceses established by Diocletian, c. 293. Permanent praetorian prefectures established after the death of Constantine I. Empire permanently partitioned after 395. Exarchates of Ravenna and Africa established after 584. After massive territorial losses in the 7th century, the remaining provinces were superseded by the theme system in c. 640–660, although in Asia Minor and parts of Greece they survived under the themes until the early 9th century.

Western Empire (395–476)

Praetorian Prefecture of Gaul

Diocese of Gaul

Alpes Poeninae
Alpes Poeninae
et Graiae Belgica I Belgica II Germania I Germania II Lugdunensis I Lugdunensis II Lugdunensis III Lugdunensis IV Maxima Sequanorum

Diocese of Vienne1

Alpes Maritimae Aquitanica I Aquitanica II Narbonensis I Narbonensis II Novempopulania Viennensis

Diocese of Spain

Baetica Balearica Carthaginensis Gallaecia Lusitania Mauretania Tingitana Tarraconensis

Diocese of the Britains

Britannia I Britannia II Flavia Caesariensis Maxima Caesariensis Valentia (?)

Praetorian Prefecture of Italy

Diocese of Suburbicarian Italy

Apulia et Calabria Campania Corsica Lucania et Bruttii Picenum
Suburbicarium Samnium Sardinia Sicilia Tuscia et Umbria Valeria

Diocese of Annonarian Italy

Alpes Cottiae Flaminia et Picenum
Annonarium Liguria et Aemilia Raetia
I Raetia
II Venetia et Istria

Diocese of Africa2

Africa proconsularis (Zeugitana) Byzacena Mauretania Caesariensis Mauretania Sitifensis Numidia Cirtensis Numidia Militiana Tripolitania

Diocese of Pannonia3

Dalmatia Noricum
mediterraneum Noricum
ripense Pannonia I Pannonia II Savia Valeria ripensis

Eastern Empire (395–c. 640)

Praetorian prefecture of Illyricum

Diocese of Dacia

Dacia Mediterranea Dacia Ripensis Dardania Moesia
I Praevalitana

Diocese of Macedonia

Achaea Creta Epirus
Nova Epirus
Vetus Macedonia Prima Macedonia II Salutaris Thessalia

Praetorian Prefecture of the East

Diocese of Thrace5

Europa Haemimontus Moesia
II4 Rhodope Scythia4 Thracia

Diocese of Asia5

Asia Caria4 Hellespontus Insulae4 Lycaonia
(370) Lycia Lydia Pamphylia Pisidia Phrygia Pacatiana Phrygia Salutaris

Diocese of Pontus5

Armenia I5 Armenia II5 Armenia Maior5 Armenian Satrapies5 Armenia III
Armenia III
(536) Armenia IV
Armenia IV
(536) Bithynia Cappadocia I5 Cappadocia II5 Galatia I5 Galatia II Salutaris5 Helenopontus5 Honorias5 Paphlagonia5 Pontus Polemoniacus5

Diocese of the East5

Arabia Cilicia I Cilicia II Cyprus4 Euphratensis Isauria Mesopotamia Osroene Palaestina I Palaestina II Palaestina III Salutaris Phoenice I Phoenice II Libanensis Syria I Syria II Salutaris Theodorias (528)

Diocese of Egypt5

Aegyptus I Aegyptus II Arcadia Augustamnica I Augustamnica II Libya Superior Libya Inferior Thebais Superior Thebais Inferior

Other territories

Taurica Quaestura exercitus (536) Spania

1 Later the Septem Provinciae 2 Re-established after reconquest by the Eastern Empire in 534 as the separate Prefecture of Africa 3 Later the Diocese of Illyricum 4 Placed under the Quaestura exercitus in 536 5 Affected (i.e. boundaries modified, abolished or renamed) by Justinian I's administrative reorganiz