The Info List - Carus

(Latin: Marcus Aurelius
Marcus Aurelius
Augustus;[1][2] c. 222[3] – July or August 283) was Roman Emperor
Roman Emperor
from 282 to 283, and was 60 at ascension. During his short reign, Carus
fought the Germanic tribes and Sarmatians
along the Danube
frontier with success. He died while campaigning against the Sassanid Empire, shortly after his forces sacked its capital Ctesiphon. He was succeeded by his sons Carinus
and Numerian, creating a dynasty which, though short-lived, provided further stability to the resurgent empire.


1 Biography

1.1 Campaign against the Sassanids and death

2 See also 3 Sources

3.1 Primary Sources 3.2 Secondary Sources

4 References


An Antoninianus
of Carus.

Carus, whose name before the accession may have been Marcus Numerius Carus,[4] was likely born at Narbo
(modern Narbonne) in Gaul[5][6] but was educated in Rome.[7] He was a senator[8] and filled various civil and military posts before being appointed prefect of the Praetorian Guard by the emperor Probus in 282.[9] After the murder of Probus at Sirmium, Carus
was proclaimed emperor by the soldiers.[10] Although Carus
severely avenged the death of Probus, he was suspected as an accessory to the deed.[11] He does not seem to have returned to Rome
after his accession, contenting himself with an announcement to the Senate.[12]

Campaign against the Sassanids and death[edit]

The top panel at Naqsh-e Rustam
Naqsh-e Rustam
depicts the victory of Bahram II
Bahram II
over Carus. The victory of Bahram II
Bahram II
over Hormizd I Kushanshah
Hormizd I Kushanshah
is depicted in the bottom panel.[13]

Bestowing the title of Caesar upon his sons Carinus
and Numerian,[14][15] he left Carinus
in charge of the western portion of the empire and took Numerian
with him on an expedition against the Persians, which had been contemplated by Probus.[16] Having defeated the Quadi
and Sarmatians
on the Danube,[17] for which he was given the title Germanicus Maximus,[18] Carus
proceeded through Thrace
and Asia Minor, annexed Mesopotamia, pressed on to Seleucia and Ctesiphon, and marched his soldiers beyond the Tigris.[19] The Sassanid King Bahram II, limited by internal opposition and his troops occupied with a campaign in modern-day Afghanistan, could not effectively defend his territory.[20] The victories of Carus
avenged all the previous defeats suffered by the Romans against the Sassanids, and he received the title of Persicus Maximus.[21] Carus' hopes of further conquest were cut short by his death, which was announced after a violent storm.[22] His death was variously attributed to disease,[23] the effects of lightning,[24] a wound received in the campaign against the Persians,[25] or an assassination planned by his Praetorian prefect, Lucius Flavius Aper.[26] The fact that he was leading a victorious campaign, and his son Numerian succeeded him without opposition, suggest that his death may have been due to natural causes.[27] See also[edit]

Crisis of the Third Century

Sources[edit] Primary Sources[edit]

Aurelius Victor, Epitome de Caesaribus Eutropius, Breviarium ab urbe condita Historia Augusta, Life of Carus, Carinus
and Numerian Joannes
Zonaras, Compendium of History extract: Zonaras: Alexander Severus to Diocletian: 222–284

Secondary Sources[edit]

Leadbetter, William, " Carus
(282–283 A.D.)", DIR Jones, A.H.M., Martindale, J.R. The Prosopography of the Later Roman Empire, Vol. I: AD260-395, Cambridge University Press, 1971 Southern, Pat. The Roman Empire
Roman Empire
from Severus to Constantine, Routledge, 2001 Canduci, Alexander (2010), Triumph & Tragedy: The Rise and Fall of Rome's Immortal Emperors, Pier 9, ISBN 978-1-74196-598-8  Gibbon. Edward Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire
Roman Empire
(1888)  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Carus, Marcus Aurelius". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. 


^ In Classical Latin, Carus' name would be inscribed as MARCVS AVRELIVS CARVS AVGVSTVS. ^ Jones, pg. 183 ^ Canduci, pg. 105 ^ Jones, pg. 183 ^ Victor, 38:1 ^ The tradition that he was one of the so-called "Illyrian Emperors", based on the unreliable vita Cari embedded in the Augustan History, was accepted uncritically by Joseph Scaliger, who assumed the other sources were wrong, and followed by Edward Gibbon
Edward Gibbon
in The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. (Tom B. Jones, "A Note on Marcus Aurelius Carus" Classical Philology 37.2 (April 1942), pp. 193–194). ^ Historia Augusta, "Vita Cari", 4:2 ^ Historia Augusta, "Vita Cari", 5:4 ^ Canduci, pg.105 ^ Zonaras, 12:29 ^ Historia Augusta, "Vita Cari", 6:1 ^ Southern, pg. 132 ^ Encyclopedia Iranica [1] ^ Zonaras, 12:30 ^ Victor 38:2 ^ Historia Augusta, "Vita Cari", 7:1 ^ Canduci, pg. 105 ^ Leadbetter, www.roman-emperors.org/carus.htm ^ Zonaras, 12:30 ^ Leadbetter, www.roman-emperors.org/carus.htm ^ Southern, pg. 133 ^ Historia Augusta, "Vita Cari", 8:3 ^ Historia Augusta, "Vita Cari", 8:2 ^ Victor, 38:3 ^ Zonaras, 12:30 ^ Southern, Patricia (May 15, 2015). The Roman Empire
Roman Empire
from Severus to Constantine. Routledge. p. 193. ISBN 9781317496946.  ^ Leadbetter, www.roman-emperors.org/carus.htm

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Carus.

Regnal titles

Preceded by Probus Roman Emperor 282–283 Served alongside: Carinus
(283) Succeeded by Carinus
and Numerian

Political offices

Preceded by Probus , Victorinus Consul of the Roman Empire 283 with Carinus Succeeded by Carinus, Numerian

v t e

Roman and Byzantine emperors

Principate 27 BC – 235 AD

Augustus Tiberius Caligula Claudius Nero Galba Otho Vitellius Vespasian Titus Domitian Nerva Trajan Hadrian Antoninus Pius Marcus Aurelius
Marcus Aurelius
and Lucius Verus Commodus Pertinax Didius Julianus (Pescennius Niger) (Clodius Albinus) Septimius Severus Caracalla
with Geta Macrinus
with Diadumenian Elagabalus Severus Alexander

Crisis 235–284

Maximinus Thrax Gordian I
Gordian I
and Gordian II Pupienus
and Balbinus Gordian III Philip the Arab
Philip the Arab
with Philip II Decius
with Herennius Etruscus Hostilian Trebonianus Gallus
Trebonianus Gallus
with Volusianus Aemilianus Valerian Gallienus
with Saloninus and Valerian II Claudius
Gothicus Quintillus Aurelian Tacitus Florian Probus Carus Carinus
and Numerian

Gallic Emperors: Postumus (Laelianus) Marius Victorinus (Domitianus II) Tetricus I
Tetricus I
with Tetricus II
Tetricus II
as Caesar

Dominate 284–395

(whole empire) Diocletian
(East) and Maximian
(West) Diocletian
(East) and Maximian
(West) with Galerius
(East) and Constantius Chlorus
Constantius Chlorus
(West) as Caesares Galerius
(East) and Constantius Chlorus
Constantius Chlorus
(West) with Severus (West) and Maximinus II (East) as Caesares Galerius
(East) and Severus (West) with Constantine the Great
Constantine the Great
(West) and Maximinus II (East) as Caesares Galerius
(East) and Maxentius
(West) with Constantine the Great
Constantine the Great
(West) and Maximinus II (East) as Caesares Galerius
(East) and Licinius
I (West) with Constantine the Great (West) and Maximinus II (East) as Caesares Maxentius
(alone) Licinius
I (West) and Maximinus II (East) with Constantine the Great (Self-proclaimed Augustus) and Valerius Valens Licinius
I (East) and Constantine the Great
Constantine the Great
(West) with Licinius
II, Constantine II, and Crispus
as Caesares (Martinian) Constantine the Great
Constantine the Great
(whole empire) with son Crispus
as Caesar Constantine II Constans
I Magnentius
with Decentius as Caesar Constantius II
Constantius II
with Vetranio Julian Jovian Valentinian the Great Valens Gratian Valentinian II Magnus Maximus
Magnus Maximus
with Victor Theodosius the Great (Eugenius)

Western Empire 395–480

Honorius Constantine III with son Constans
II) Constantius III Joannes Valentinian III Petronius Maximus
Petronius Maximus
with Palladius Avitus Majorian Libius Severus Anthemius Olybrius Glycerius Julius Nepos Romulus Augustulus

Eastern/ Byzantine Empire 395–1204

Arcadius Theodosius II Pulcheria Marcian Leo I the Thracian Leo II Zeno (first reign) Basiliscus
with son Marcus as co-emperor Zeno (second reign) Anastasius I Dicorus Justin I Justinian the Great Justin II Tiberius
II Constantine Maurice with son Theodosius as co-emperor Phocas Heraclius Constantine III Heraklonas Constans
II Constantine IV
Constantine IV
with brothers Heraclius
and Tiberius
and then Justinian II as co-emperors Justinian II
Justinian II
(first reign) Leontios Tiberios III Justinian II
Justinian II
(second reign) with son Tiberius
as co-emperor Philippikos Anastasios II Theodosius III Leo III the Isaurian Constantine V Artabasdos Leo IV the Khazar Constantine VI Irene Nikephoros I Staurakios Michael I Rangabe
Michael I Rangabe
with son Theophylact as co-emperor Leo V the Armenian
Leo V the Armenian
with Symbatios-Constantine as junior emperor Michael II
Michael II
the Amorian Theophilos Michael III Basil I
Basil I
the Macedonian Leo VI the Wise Alexander Constantine VII
Constantine VII
Porphyrogennetos Romanos I Lekapenos
Romanos I Lekapenos
with sons Christopher, Stephen and Constantine as junior co-emperors Romanos II Nikephoros II Phokas John I Tzimiskes Basil II Constantine VIII Zoë (first reign) and Romanos III Argyros Zoë (first reign) and Michael IV the Paphlagonian Michael V Kalaphates Zoë (second reign) with Theodora Zoë (second reign) and Constantine IX Monomachos Constantine IX Monomachos
Constantine IX Monomachos
(sole emperor) Theodora Michael VI Bringas Isaac I Komnenos Constantine X Doukas Romanos IV Diogenes Michael VII Doukas
Michael VII Doukas
with brothers Andronikos and Konstantios and son Constantine Nikephoros III Botaneiates Alexios I Komnenos John II Komnenos
John II Komnenos
with Alexios Komnenos as co-emperor Manuel I Komnenos Alexios II Komnenos Andronikos I Komnenos Isaac II Angelos Alexios III Angelos Alexios IV Angelos Nicholas Kanabos (chosen by the Senate) Alexios V Doukas

Empire of Nicaea 1204–1261

Constantine Laskaris Theodore I Laskaris John III Doukas Vatatzes Theodore II Laskaris John IV Laskaris

Eastern/ Byzantine Empire 1261–1453

Michael VIII Palaiologos Andronikos II Palaiologos
Andronikos II Palaiologos
with Michael IX Palaiologos
Michael IX Palaiologos
as co-emperor Andronikos III Palaiologos John V Palaiologos John VI Kantakouzenos
John VI Kantakouzenos
with John V Palaiologos
John V Palaiologos
and Matthew Kantakouzenos as co-emperors John V Palaiologos Andronikos IV Palaiologos John VII Palaiologos Andronikos V Palaiologos Manuel II Palaiologos John VIII Palaiologos Constantine XI Palaiologos

Italics indicates a co-emperor, while underlining indicates an usurper.

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 307463196 LCCN: no2014032180 GND