312 pages | 6 B/W Illus.
Image and Reality of Roman Imperial Power in the Third Century AD focuses on the wide range of available sources of Roman imperial power in the period AD 193-284, ranging from literary and economic texts, to coins and other artefacts. This volume examines the impact of war on the foundations of the economic, political, military, and ideological power of third-century Roman emperors, and the lasting effects of this. This detailed study offers insight into this complex and transformative period in Roman history and will be a valuable resource to any student of Roman imperial power.
"Professor De Blois, long recognized as a leader in the area of Roman History, has produced an admirably clear analysis of the complex third century AD. The argument is clear and original, the study of how a new, professional administrative class saved a state that had lost direction and imagination will resonate with readers whose interests range well beyond the history of Ancient Rome."
- David Potter, University of Michigan, USA
"Whether in legal, military, political, or economic matters, there can hardly be a scholar more qualified to venture an opinion, let alone produce a definitive statement, on the situation in the third century CE than Lukas de Blois … De Blois has crafted a fascinating approach to the third century that makes the most of his undeniable expertise. The book will be of interest to any who wish to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the period, have an interest in imperial power, or to specialists in the period’s political, military, economic, or ideological history."
- Jane Sancinito, Oberlin College, USA, Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2019
List of maps
CHAPTER I : Introduction
1.4 Status quaestionis
CHAPTER II: Wars
2.1 Escalation, crisis, and recovery
2.2 The Severan era from AD 193 to 230
2.3 Escalation: the years 231-249
2.4 Crisis: the years 249-268
2.5 Recovery: the years 268-284
CHAPTER III: Economic sources of imperial power, AD 193-284
3.2 Tax territories
3.4 Imperial domains
3.5 Debasement of the imperial coinage
CHAPTER IV: Sources of military and political imperial power, AD 193-284
4.2 Sources of military power
4.3 Networks and administrative personnel
- Changing appointment policies
- The local level
- The emperor’s bureaucracy
CHAPTER V: Ideological sources of imperial power
5.2 Good imperial behavior and general goodwill
5.3 A permanent potential for victory
5.4 Dynastic claims
5.5 Infant emperors
5.6 Divine associations
CHAPTER VI: Conclusions