This book covers Julia’s life, and charts her travels throughout the Empire from Aswan to York during a period of profound upheaval, and seeks the truth about this woman who inspired such extreme and contrasting views, exposing the instability of our sources about her, and characterizing a sympathetic, courageous, intelligent, and important woman.
This book contains a fresh re-assessment of the one of the most significant figures of her time and questions:
• Was Julia more powerful than earlier empresses?
• Did she really promote despotism?
• How seriously is her literary circle to be taken?
As part of a dynasty which used force and violence to preserve its rule, she was distrusted by its subjects; as a Syrian, she was the object of prejudice; as a woman with power, she was resented. On the other hand, Domna was the centre of a literary circle considered highly significant by nineteenth-century admirers.
Chronology 1. Introduction 2. The Women of Emesa 3. Marriage 4. Domna on Her Travels 5. Empress 6. The Reign of Caracalla 7. Cultural Activities 8. Image and Cult 9. Aftermath Bibliographies. Glossary. Indexes 1. Places, with Modern Equivalents 2. Persons 3. General