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Commodus

Commodus, born Lucius Aurelius Commodus and died Lucius Aelius Aurelius Commodus, was Roman emperor with his father Marcus Aurelius from 177 until his father's death in 180, until 192. His reign is considered to mark the end of the golden period in the history of the Roman Empire known as the Pax Romana. During his father's reign, he accompanied Marcus Aurelius during the Marcomannic Wars in 172 and on a tour of the Eastern provinces in 176, he was made the youngest consul in Roman history in 177 and that year elevated to co-emperor with his father. His accession was the first time a son had succeeded his biological father since Titus succeeded Vespasian in 79, he was the first emperor to have both a father and grandfather as the two preceding emperors. Commodus was the first emperor "born in the purple". During his solo reign, the Empire enjoyed a period of reduced military conflict compared with the reign of Marcus Aurelius, but intrigues and conspiracies abounded, leading Commodus to an dictatorial style of leadership that culminated in a god-like personality cult.

His assassination in 192 marked the end of the Nerva–Antonine dynasty. He was succeeded by the first emperor in the tumultuous Year of the Five Emperors. Commodus was born on 31 August AD 161 near Rome, he was the son of the reigning emperor, Marcus Aurelius, Aurelius's first cousin, Faustina the Younger, the youngest daughter of Emperor Antoninus Pius, who had died only a few months before. Commodus had an elder twin brother, Titus Aurelius Fulvus Antoninus, who died in 165. On 12 October 166, Commodus was made Caesar together with Marcus Annius Verus; the latter died in 169 having failed to recover from an operation, which left Commodus as Marcus Aurelius's sole surviving son. He was looked after by his father's physician, who treated many of Commodus' common illnesses. Commodus received extensive tutoring by a multitude of teachers with a focus on intellectual education. Among his teachers, Antistius Capella, Titus Aius Sanctus, Pitholaus are mentioned. Commodus is known to have been at Carnuntum, the headquarters of Marcus Aurelius during the Marcomannic Wars, in 172.

It was there that, on 15 October 172, he was given the victory title Germanicus, in the presence of the army. The title suggests. On 20 January 175, Commodus entered the College of Pontiffs, the starting point of a career in public life. In April 175, Avidius Cassius, Governor of Syria, declared himself Emperor following rumours that Marcus Aurelius had died. Having been accepted as Emperor by Syria and Egypt, Cassius carried on his rebellion after it had become obvious that Marcus was still alive. During the preparations for the campaign against Cassius, Commodus assumed his toga virilis on the Danubian front on 7 July 175, thus formally entering adulthood. Cassius, was killed by one of his centurions before the campaign against him could begin. Commodus subsequently accompanied his father on a lengthy trip to the Eastern provinces, during which he visited Antioch; the Emperor and his son traveled to Athens, where they were initiated into the Eleusinian mysteries. They returned to Rome in the autumn of 176.

Marcus Aurelius was the first emperor since Vespasian to have a legitimate biological son and, though he himself was the fifth in the line of the so-called Five Good Emperors, each of whom had adopted his successor, it seems to have been his firm intention that Commodus should be his heir. On 27 November 176, Marcus Aurelius granted Commodus the rank of Imperator and, in the middle of 177, the title Augustus, giving his son the same status as his own and formally sharing power. On 23 December of the same year, the two Augusti celebrated a joint triumph, Commodus was given tribunician power. On 1 January 177, Commodus became consul for the first time, which made him, aged 15, the youngest consul in Roman history up to that time, he subsequently married Bruttia Crispina before accompanying his father to the Danubian front once more in 178. Marcus Aurelius died there on 17 March 180. Upon his ascension, Commodus devalued the Roman currency, he reduced the weight of the denarius from 96 per Roman pound to 105 per Roman pound.

He reduced the silver purity from 79 percent to 76 percent – the silver weight dropping from 2.57 grams to 2.34 grams. In 186 he further reduced the purity and silver weight to 74 percent and 2.22 grams being 108 to the Roman pound. His reduction of the denarius during his rule was the largest since the empire's first devaluation during Nero's reign. Whereas the reign of Marcus Aurelius had been marked by continuous warfare, Commodus' rule was comparatively peaceful in the military sense, but was characterised by political strife and the arbitrary and capricious behaviour of the emperor himself. In the view of Dio Cassius, a contemporary observer of the period, his accession marked the descent "from a kingdom of gold to one of iron and rust". Despite his notoriety, considering the importance of his reign, Commodus' years in power are not well chronicled; the principal surviving literary sources are Herodian, Dio Cassius, the Historia Augusta (untrustworthy for its character as a work of literature rather than history, with elements of fiction embedded within its biographies.

Augsburg-Hochzoll

Augsburg Hochzoll - the district of Hochzoll lies in the east of the city of Augsburg. Hochzoll is bordered on its west by the Lech river, whose waters feed the Kuhsee to the south of Hochzoll. To the east, Hochzoll shares its city border with that of Friedberg West, a district of the town of Friedberg; the main road through Augsburg Hochzoll is the Bundesstrasse 300, designated as the Bundesstrasse 2 for that part which goes through Hochzoll. The latter turns in the east of Hochzoll to the south, forms part of the border between Hochzoll and Friedberg west. 200 meters south of the road bridge, a bridge for the railway line Augsburg-Munich crosses the Lech. East of the railway bridge is the station Hochzoll, at which the Paartalbahn railway line branches off of the main route to Ingolstadt; this light-rail route runs about parallel to the B 300, while the main route of the Augsburg – Munich line turns south towards Munich in a long-drawn-out curve. The history of Hochzoll has at its origin a bridging over the Lech river in the year 980.

As the Lech is the historical border between Oberbayern and Schwaben, as the construction of bridges was expensive at the time, a bridge toll was raised. As the town charter for the municipality Friedberg emanates from the year 1264, the Lech served as the border between Augsburg and Friedberg; the district of Hochzoll today belonged to Friedberg and was referred to as Friedberger Au. The history of the district has always been shaped by the construction of bridges. 1639 the Lech bridge goes up in flames as a result of war and can only be rebuilt through subsidies from the realm of the city of Augsburg. 1646 during the siege of Augsburg by French and Swedish armies, the bridge again goes up in flames. 1796 the destroyed bridge, by order of the French general Moreau, is rebuilt by carpenters from Augsburg. 1797 French troops burn the bridge down again, but in the two subsequent years reconstruction of the bridge takes place successfully. 1800 Bavarian military damages the bridge – but with subsequent immediate repair - complete renewal of the bridge is accomplished a few years later.

From 1803 onwards the Auen is settled east of the Lech. 1818 the scattered settlements comprise 24 estates. Hochzoll, Kolonie an der Lechbrücke and Einöden now comprehensively form the 172 inhabitant parish community of Friedbergerau. 1839/1840 building of a wooden course bridge as a part of the building of the railway line Augsburg - Munich. 1840 at the estate "Stierhof" the first Hochzoll railway station is built on the newly constructed railway line Augsburg - Munich. 1851 a flood destroys the road bridge. 1855 the city of Augsburg builds a new heavy timber bridge for road traffic. 1862 the wooden railway bridge is replaced by a latticed bridge made of steel. 1874 through construction of the Paartalbahn arises the station Hochzoll, the number of inhabitants increase, through immigration of industrial workers, to 350. 1877 establishment of a voluntary fire-brigade. 1878 the road bridge collapses, as floodwater wash away the columns from under the bridge and deposit them 50 meters up the Lech. An emergency bridge is constructed in its place.

1891 a road bridge made of iron replaces the emergency bridge, established in 1878. 1905 the parish of Friedbergerau takes the name Hochzoll. 1910 a flood damages large parts of the village. A new weir on the Lech – called Hochablass – is developed. 1911 first electrical road lighting. 1913 incorporation: Together with Lechhausen the village of Hochzoll, whose population has increased in the meantime to 1708 inhabitants, becomes a district of Augsburg. 1915 / 1916 a new school building "Holzerau" is established. 1926 a new steel arch construction replaces the lattice bridge of the railway. This "new" bridge was still in use up to the year 2002. 1928 new building of a 120 meters long steel-reinforced concrete bridge, renovated in 1990. 1929 Hochzoll is attached to the town gas supply network. 1934 the Strassenbahn line 6 is built on the Friedberger road, over the Lech bridge, up to Zugspitz street. 1944 several houses fall victim to allied bombs. 1945, 28 April, the US army rolls unhindered through Hochzoll towards Friedberg.

1946 war refugees find a new homeland in Hochzoll. 1954 there are now over 5.000 inhabitants. 1957 laying of the foundation stone of the European village. 1969 Hochzoll is divided into south. Starting from 1970 the settlement of Hochzoll begins, with the establishment of housing estates south of Oberländer street, to push against its boundaries. 1972 the Eiskanal is built as part of the 1972 Summer Olympic games held in Munich. As part of the construction measures of the Eiskanal, the Kuhsee is built in the popular local recreation area in the south of Hochzoll. In this year the fifth to eighth level auxiliary classes, which were provided at the Holbein-Gymnasium, were shifted to the now finished Rudolf Diesel Gymnasium. At present over 1.150 pupils visit this Gynasium. 1976 16 September, the Rudolf Diesel Gymnasium at Friedberger street takes up its training enterprise. 1990 new building of the road bridge 2000–2003 the 1926 built railway bridge, in the course of the four track development of the Augsburg - Munich line, is replaced by two new steel arch bridges.

This article is based on a translation of the German Wikipedia article Augsburg-Hochzoll

Energy in Ukraine

Energy in Ukraine describes energy and electricity production and import in Ukraine. As an industry it is part of the Fuel and Energy Complex that combines smaller industries such as power generation and distribution, coal and gas mining industries as well as transportation of resources. Ukraine's geographic position and proximity to Russia explain its importance as a natural gas and petroleum liquids transit country. 3.0 trillion cubic feet of natural gas flowed through Ukraine in 2013 to Austria, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Czech Republic, Greece, Moldova, Romania and Turkey. Ukraine depends on Russia for its supplies of natural gas and oil while being a net-exporter of electricity and coal. Ukraine tries to diversify energy sources. Ukraine was the 6th highest importer of natural gas in 2009. Naftogaz is the state owned gas company. Ukraine stopped buying gas from Russia in 2015 due to the Russian presence in eastern Ukraine. In disputes Russia has stopped gas delivery in 2006 and 2008. In 2009 80% of the European Union gas from Russia was delivered via Ukraine.

In 2014 total electricity production was 183 TWh. Electricity consumption was 134 TWh after transmission losses of 20 TWh, with peak demand at about 28 GWe. In 2015 electricity production fell to about 146 TWh due to a fall in anthracite coal supplies caused by the War in Donbass. Electricity production fell from 296 TWh in 1991 to 171 TWh in 1999 increased to 195 TWh in 2007, before falling again. In 2011 Ukraine joined the European Energy Community, however there has been slow progress on implementing European energy regulations. On 1 July 2019, a new wholesale energy market was launched, intended to bring real competition in the generation market and help future integration with Europe; the change was a prerequisite for receiving European Union assistance. It led to in increased price for industrial consumers of between 14% to 28% during July; the bulk of Energoatom output is sold to the government's "guaranteed buyer" to keep prices more stable for domestic customers. Ukraine was 8th top nuclear electricity producer in 2009.

46.7% of domestic electricity generation was nuclear. This was the 2nd largest share, only France was higher; the largest nuclear power plant in Europe is in Ukraine. Energoatom is the state nuclear company founded in 1996, it has about 38,000 employees. The 1986 Chernobyl disaster in Northern Ukraine was the world's most severe nuclear accident. Lack of coal for Ukraine's coal-fired power stations due to the War in Donbass and a shut down one of the six reactors of the Zaporizhia Nuclear Power Plant lead to rolling blackouts throughout Ukraine from early till late December 2014. In 2018 Energoatom stated that electricity prices were too low to cover the cost of new nuclear fuel, called for a price increase. In 2017 Climate News Network reported that Chinese companies plan to spend $1bn in a solar power park in the nuclear disaster area in Ukraine. Ukraine signed a loan agreement in-principle for $3.65 billion with the China Development Bank in 2012, during President Viktor Yanukovich's term of office, contingent on the development of agreed development projects in the coal and gas sectors.

However, by April 2017 Ukraine had not agreed any suitable projects due to a "lack of convergence in the positions of and the energy ministry". Corruption is one of the top problems in Ukraine, characterised as a systemic phenomenon, which exists in all sections and levels of the public administration. Ukraine gets gas from Gazprom via third parties. Gazprom did not publish any reporting on anti-corruption programmes. In 2015 corruption allegations were made against Energoatom, Ukraine's nuclear power operator, with concerns raised by Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk. In March 2016, Energoatom's assets and bank accounts were frozen by Ukrainian courts over unpaid debts, against which Energoatom is appealing. Dnieper Hydroelectric Station