Trajan (53–117)


53 On September 18th Trajan was born, that who would have become a Roman Emperor. His father was a Roman citizen also called Trajan. His mother’s name, who seems to be a native of Spain, is not known. Trajan was not born in Rome, but in city of Italica in Baetica province, in the South of Iberian Peninsula. So, Trajan was the first Roman emperor that was not born in Italian Peninsula.

His father, a protégé of the famous philosopher Seneca, was a governor of Baetica, took part in Jerusalem’s siege, he became a consul and then a governor of Syria. His son had proved since he was young to be a brave soldier and participated with his father to the military campaigns in East. At the beginning of Domitian’s reign he came to Rome and then he got the control of a legion in Spain, where he would become a governor later. Then he was a consul and a governor of the Upper Germany Province.

96 After Domitian’s murder by the discontent senators, Marcus Cocceius Nerva, 70 years old, started Antonins Dynasty (96-193), took the throne and because he did not have any successor to the throne he adopted Trajan, advised by a former Spanish consul, Lucius Licinius Sura. After Nerva’s death, Trajan did not go fast to Rome but he remained near the Rhine, where Romans had problems with Germans. He travelled on the Rhine and Danube’s shores in order to see the situation of the Empire’s borders.

99 At the beginning of summer he came back to Rome and entered walking to Eternal City, to the delight of the common people.

In Rome he was concerned of the smooth running of the empire, reorganized financial domain, Rome’s supply and laws. Many of his laws were related to children’s fate.

Above all, Trajan was a soldier. His great campaign are those against Dacians, who he defeated after two bloody wars, in 101-102 and 105-106 and against Eastern parts, when he was killed after a series of victories.

117 He was old and sick, and the way back to Rome, a hurried one, made his end come earlier. He died on August 13th, in Selinus town in Cilicia, Minor Asia. Dying, he adopted Hadrianus because he did not have children, and this became the new emperor.

    Trajan’s reign also meant a series of impressive buildings made in Rome. After Dacia’s conquest, Trajan wanted to give to Romans a new square to outstrip all the others (Forum Romanum, Caesar’s, Augustus’ or Vespasian’s forum). Inside this forum there are also Trajan’s column and the libraries. Then a commercial market and Trajan’s temple, made by his successors, Hadrianus, were added. [1]






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