Theodosius I known as Theodosius the Great, was a Roman Emperor from 379 to 395, the last emperor to rule over both the Eastern and the Western halves of the Roman Empire. On accepting his elevation, he campaigned against Goths and other barbarians who had invaded the Empire, his resources were not sufficient to destroy them or drive them out, Roman policy for centuries in dealing with invaders. By treaty, which followed his indecisive victory at the end of the Gothic War, they were established as foederati, autonomous allies of the Empire, south of the Danube, in Illyricum, within the Empire's borders, they were given lands and allowed to remain under their own leaders, a grave departure from Roman hegemonic ways. This turn away from traditional policies was accommodationist and had grave consequences for the Western Empire from the beginning of the century, as the Romans found themselves with the impossible task of defending the borders and deal with unruly federates within. Theodosius I was obliged to fight two destructive civil wars, successively defeating the usurpers Magnus Maximus in 387-388 and Eugenius in 394, though not without material cost to the power of the Empire.
He issued decrees that made Nicene Christianity the official state church of the Roman Empire. He neither prevented nor punished the destruction of prominent Hellenistic temples of classical antiquity, including the Temple of Apollo in Delphi and the Serapeum in Alexandria, he dissolved the Order of the Vestal Virgins in Rome. In 393, he banned the pagan rituals of the Olympics in Ancient Greece. After his death, Theodosius's young sons Arcadius and Honorius inherited the east and west halves of the empire and the Roman Empire was never again re-united, though Eastern Roman emperors after Zeno would claim the united title after Julius Nepos's death in 480. Theodosius is considered a saint by the Armenian Apostolic Church and Eastern Orthodox Church, his feast day is on January 19. Flavius Theodosius was born in Cauca, Hispania or in Italica, Hispania, to a senior military officer, Theodosius the Elder. Theodosius learned his military lessons by campaigning with his father's staff in Britannia where he went to help quell the Great Conspiracy in 368.
In about 373, he became governor of Upper Moesia and oversaw hostilities against the Sarmatians and thereafter against the Alemanni. He was military commander of Moesia, a Roman province on the lower Danube, in 374, when the empire faced a formidable eruption of the Quadi and Sarmatians, the neighboring province of Illyricum being in fact overrun. Theodosius is reported to have defended his province with marked success. However, shortly thereafter, at about the same time as the sudden disgrace and execution of his father, Theodosius retired to Hispania; the reason for his retirement, the relationship between it and his father's death is uncertain, though probable. The death of Valentinian I in 375 created political pandemonium. Fearing further persecution on account of his family ties, Theodosius abruptly retired to his family estates in the province of Gallaecia where he adopted the life of a provincial aristocrat. From 364 to 375, the Roman Empire was governed by two co-emperors, the brothers Valentinian I and Valens.
In 378, after the disastrous Battle of Adrianople where Valens was killed, Gratian invited Theodosius to take command of the Illyrian army. As Valens had no successor, Gratian's appointment of Theodosius amounted to a de facto invitation for Theodosius to become co-Augustus of the eastern half of the Empire. After Gratian was killed in a rebellion in 383, Theodosius appointed his own elder son, Arcadius, to be his co-ruler in the East. After the death in 392 of Valentinian II, whom Theodosius had supported against a variety of usurpations, Theodosius ruled as sole Emperor, appointing his younger son Honorius Augustus as his co-ruler of the West and by defeating the usurper Eugenius on 6 September 394, at the Battle of the Frigidus he restored peace. By his first wife, the Spanish Aelia Flaccilla Augusta, he had two sons and Honorius, a daughter, Aelia Pulcheria. Both Aelia Flaccilla and Pulcheria died in 385, his second wife was Galla, daughter of the emperor Valentinian I and his second wife Justina.
Theodosius and Galla had a son, born in 388 and who died young, a daughter, Aelia Galla Placidia. Placidia was the only child who survived to adulthood and became an Empress; the Goths and their allies entrenched in the provinces of Dacia and eastern Pannonia Inferior consumed Theodosius's attention. The Gothic crisis was so dire that his co-Emperor Gratian relinquished control of the Illyrian provinces and retired to Trier in Gaul to let Theodosius operate without hindrance. A major weakness in the Roman position after the defeat at Adrianople was the recruiting of barbarians to fight against other barbarians. In order to reconstruct the Roman Army of the West, Theodosius needed to find able bodied soldiers and so he turned to the most capable men at hand: the barbarians settled in the Empire; this caused many difficulties in the battle against barbarians since the newly recruited fighters had little or no loya
Egypt (Roman province)
The Roman province of Egypt was established in 30 BC after Octavian defeated his rival Mark Antony, deposed Pharaoh Cleopatra, annexed the Ptolemaic Kingdom to the Roman Empire. The province encompassed most of modern-day Egypt except for the Sinai Peninsula. Aegyptus was bordered by the provinces of Crete and Cyrenaica to Judea to the East; the province came to serve as a major producer of grain for the empire and had a developed urban economy. Aegyptus was by far the wealthiest Eastern Roman province, by far the wealthiest Roman province outside of Italia. In Alexandria, its capital, it possessed the largest port, the second largest city of the Roman Empire; as a key province, but the'crown domain' where the emperors succeeded the divine Pharaohs, Egypt was ruled by a uniquely styled Praefectus augustalis, instead of the traditional senatorial governor of other Roman provinces. The prefect was appointed by the Emperor; the first prefect of Aegyptus, Gaius Cornelius Gallus, brought Upper Egypt under Roman control by force of arms, established a protectorate over the southern frontier district, abandoned by the Ptolemies.
The second prefect, Aelius Gallus, made an unsuccessful expedition to conquer Arabia Petraea and Arabia Felix. The Red Sea coast of Aegyptus was not brought under Roman control until the reign of Claudius; the third prefect, Gaius Petronius, cleared the neglected canals for irrigation, stimulating a revival of agriculture. Petronius led a campaign into present-day central Sudan against the Kingdom of Kush at Meroe, whose queen Imanarenat had attacked Roman Egypt. Failing to acquire permanent gains, in 22 BC he razed the city of Napata to the ground and retreated to the north. From the reign of Nero onward, Aegyptus enjoyed an era of prosperity. Much trouble was caused by religious conflicts between the Greeks and the Jews in Alexandria, which after the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 became the world centre of Jewish religion and culture. Under Trajan a Jewish revolt occurred, resulting in the suppression of the Jews of Alexandria and the loss of all their privileges, although they soon returned.
Hadrian, who twice visited Aegyptus, founded Antinopolis in memory of his drowned lover Antinous. From his reign onward buildings in the Greco-Roman style were erected throughout the country Under Antoninus Pius oppressive taxation led to a revolt in 139, of the native Egyptians, suppressed only after several years of fighting; this Bucolic War, led by one Isidorus, caused great damage to the economy and marked the beginning of Egypt's economic decline. Avidius Cassius, who led the Roman forces in the war, declared himself emperor in 175, was acknowledged by the armies of Syria and Aegyptus. On the approach of Marcus Aurelius, Cassius was deposed and killed and the clemency of the emperor restored peace. A similar revolt broke out in 193, when Pescennius Niger was proclaimed emperor on the death of Pertinax; the Emperor Septimius Severus gave a constitution to Alexandria and the provincial capitals in 202. Caracalla granted Roman citizenship to all Egyptians, in common with the other provincials, but this was to extort more taxes, which grew onerous as the needs of the emperors for more revenue grew more desperate.
There was a series of revolts, both civilian, through the 3rd century. Under Decius, in 250, the Christians again suffered from persecution, but their religion continued to spread; the prefect of Aegyptus in 260, Mussius Aemilianus, first supported the Macriani, usurpers during the rule of Gallienus, in 261, became a usurper himself, but was defeated by Gallienus. Zenobia, queen of Palmyra, took the country away from the Romans when she conquered Aegyptus in 269, declaring herself the Queen of Egypt also; this warrior queen claimed that Egypt was an ancestral home of hers through a familial tie to Cleopatra VII. She was well educated and familiar with the culture of Egypt, its religion, its language, she lost it when the Roman emperor, severed amicable relations between the two countries and retook Egypt in 274. Two generals based in Aegyptus and Domitius Domitianus, led successful revolts and made themselves emperors. Diocletian reorganised the whole province, his edict of 303 against the Christians began a new era of persecution.
This was the last serious attempt to stem the steady growth of Christianity in Egypt, however. As Rome overtook the Ptolemaic system in place for areas of Egypt, they made many changes; the effect of the Roman conquest was at first to strengthen the position of the Greeks and of Hellenism against Egyptian influences. Some of the previous offices and names of offices under the Hellenistic Ptolemaic rule were kept, some were changed, some names would have remained but the function and administration would have changed; the Romans introduced important changes in the administrative system, aimed at achieving a high level of efficiency and maximizing revenue. The duties of the prefect of Aegyptus combined responsibility for military security through command of the legions and cohorts, for the organization of finance and taxation, for the administration of justice; the reforms of the early 4th century had established the basis for another 250 years of comparative prosperity in Aegyptus, at a cost of greater rigidity and more oppressive state control.
Aegyptus was subdivided for administrative purposes into a number of smaller provinces, s
Nero was the last Roman emperor of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. He became Claudius' heir and successor. Like Claudius, Nero became emperor with the consent of the Praetorian Guard. Nero's mother, Agrippina the Younger, was implicated in Claudius' death and Nero's nomination as emperor, she dominated Nero's early life and decisions. Five years into his reign, he had her murdered. During the early years of his reign, Nero was content to be guided by his mother, his tutor Lucius Annaeus Seneca and his Praetorian prefect, Sextus Afranius Burrus; as time passed, he started to play a more active and independent role in government and foreign policy. During his reign, the redoubtable general Corbulo conducted a successful war and negotiated peace with the Parthian Empire, his general Suetonius Paulinus crushed a major revolt in Britain, led by the Iceni Queen Boudica. The Bosporan Kingdom was annexed to the empire, the First Jewish–Roman War began. Nero focused much of his attention on diplomacy and the cultural life of the empire, ordering theatres built and promoting athletic games.
He made public appearances as an actor, poet and charioteer. In the eyes of traditionalists, this undermined the dignity and authority of his person and office, his extravagant, empire-wide program of public and private works was funded by a rise in taxes, much resented by the middle and upper classes. Various plots against his life were revealed. In 68 AD Vindex, governor of the Gaulish territory Gallia Lugdunensis, rebelled, he was supported by the governor of Hispania Tarraconensis. Vindex's revolt failed in its immediate aim, but Nero fled Rome when Rome's discontented civil and military authorities chose Galba as emperor, he committed suicide on June 9, 68 AD, when he learned that he had been tried in absentia and condemned to death as a public enemy, making him the first Roman Emperor to commit suicide. His death ended the Julio-Claudian dynasty, sparking a brief period of civil wars known as the Year of the Four Emperors. Nero's rule is associated with tyranny and extravagance. Most Roman sources, such as Suetonius and Cassius Dio, offer overwhelmingly negative assessments of his personality and reign.
Suetonius tells that many Romans believed that the Great Fire of Rome was instigated by Nero to clear the way for his planned palatial complex, the Domus Aurea. According to Tacitus he was said to have seized Christians as scapegoats for the fire and burned them alive motivated not by public justice but by personal cruelty; some modern historians question the reliability of the ancient sources on Nero's tyrannical acts. A few sources paint Nero in a more favorable light. There is evidence of his popularity among the Roman commoners in the eastern provinces of the Empire, where a popular legend arose that Nero had not died and would return. At least three leaders of short-lived, failed rebellions presented themselves as "Nero reborn" to enlist popular support. Nero was born Lucius Domitius Ahenobarbus on 15 December 37 AD in Antium, he was the only son of Agrippina the Younger. His maternal grandparents were Agrippina the Elder, he was Augustus' great-great grandson, descended from the first Emperor's only daughter, Julia.
The ancient biographer Suetonius, critical of Nero's ancestors, wrote that Augustus had reproached Nero's grandfather for his unseemly enjoyment of violent gladiator games. According to Jürgen Malitz, Suetonius tells that Nero's father was known to be "irascible and brutal", that both "enjoyed chariot races and theater performances to a degree not befitting their position."Nero's father, died in 40. A few years before his death, Domitius had been involved in a political scandal that, according to Malitz, "could have cost him his life if Tiberius had not died in the year 37." In the previous year, Nero's mother Agrippina had been caught up in a scandal of her own. Caligula's beloved sister Drusilla had died and Caligula began to feel threatened by his brother-in-law Marcus Aemilius Lepidus. Agrippina, suspected of adultery with her brother-in-law, was forced to carry the funerary urn after Lepidus' execution. Caligula banished his two surviving sisters and Julia Livilla, to a remote island in the Mediterranean Sea.
According to The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Greece and Rome, Agrippina was exiled for plotting to overthrow Caligula. Nero's inheritance was taken from him and he was sent to live with his paternal aunt Domitia Lepida, the mother of Claudius' third wife Valeria Messalina. Caligula's reign lasted from 37 until 41, he died from multiple stab wounds in January of 41 after being ambushed by his own Praetorian Guard on the Palatine Hill. Claudius succeeded Caligula as Emperor. Agrippina became his fourth wife. By February 49, she had persuaded Claudius to adopt her son Nero. After Nero's adoption, "Claudius" became part of his name: Nero Claudius Caesar Drusus Germanicus. Claudius had gold coins issued to mark the adoption. Classics professor Josiah Osgood has written that "the coins, through their distribution and imagery alike, showed that a new Leader was in the making." David Shotter noted that, despite events in Rome, Nero's step-brother Britannicus was more prominent in provincial coinages during the early 50s.
Nero formally entered public life as an adult in 51 AD—he was around 14 years old. When he turned 16, Nero married Claudius' daughter (
Granite is a common type of felsic intrusive igneous rock, granular and phaneritic in texture. Granites can be predominantly white, pink, or gray depending on their mineralogy; the word "granite" comes from the Latin granum, a grain, in reference to the coarse-grained structure of such a holocrystalline rock. Speaking, granite is an igneous rock with between 20% and 60% quartz by volume, at least 35% of the total feldspar consisting of alkali feldspar, although the term "granite" is used to refer to a wider range of coarse-grained igneous rocks containing quartz and feldspar; the term "granitic" means granite-like and is applied to granite and a group of intrusive igneous rocks with similar textures and slight variations in composition and origin. These rocks consist of feldspar, quartz and amphibole minerals, which form an interlocking, somewhat equigranular matrix of feldspar and quartz with scattered darker biotite mica and amphibole peppering the lighter color minerals; some individual crystals are larger than the groundmass, in which case the texture is known as porphyritic.
A granitic rock with a porphyritic texture is known as a granite porphyry. Granitoid is a descriptive field term for lighter-colored, coarse-grained igneous rocks. Petrographic examination is required for identification of specific types of granitoids; the extrusive igneous rock equivalent of granite is rhyolite. Granite is nearly always massive and tough; these properties have made granite a widespread construction stone throughout human history. The average density of granite is between 2.65 and 2.75 g/cm3, its compressive strength lies above 200 MPa, its viscosity near STP is 3–6·1019 Pa·s. The melting temperature of dry granite at ambient pressure is 1215–1260 °C. Granite has poor primary permeability overall, but strong secondary permeability through cracks and fractures if they are present. Granite is classified according to the QAPF diagram for coarse grained plutonic rocks and is named according to the percentage of quartz, alkali feldspar and plagioclase feldspar on the A-Q-P half of the diagram.
True granite contains both alkali feldspars. When a granitoid is devoid or nearly devoid of plagioclase, the rock is referred to as alkali feldspar granite; when a granitoid contains less than 10% orthoclase, it is called tonalite. A granite containing both muscovite and biotite micas is called two-mica granite. Two-mica granites are high in potassium and low in plagioclase, are S-type granites or A-type granites. A worldwide average of the chemical composition of granite, by weight percent, based on 2485 analyses: Granite containing rock is distributed throughout the continental crust. Much of it was intruded during the Precambrian age. Outcrops of granite tend to form rounded massifs. Granites sometimes occur in circular depressions surrounded by a range of hills, formed by the metamorphic aureole or hornfels. Granite occurs as small, less than 100 km2 stock masses and in batholiths that are associated with orogenic mountain ranges. Small dikes of granitic composition called aplites are associated with the margins of granitic intrusions.
In some locations coarse-grained pegmatite masses occur with granite. Granite is more common in continental crust than in oceanic crust, they are crystallized from felsic melts which are less dense than mafic rocks and thus tend to ascend toward the surface. In contrast, mafic rocks, either basalts or gabbros, once metamorphosed at eclogite facies, tend to sink into the mantle beneath the Moho. Granitoids have crystallized from felsic magmas that have compositions near a eutectic point. Magmas are composed of minerals in variable abundances. Traditionally, magmatic minerals are crystallized from the melts that have separated from their parental rocks and thus are evolved because of igneous differentiation. If a granite has a cooling process, it has the potential to form larger crystals. There are peritectic and residual minerals in granitic magmas. Peritectic minerals are generated through peritectic reactions, whereas residual minerals are inherited from parental rocks. In either case, magmas will evolve to the eutectic for crystallization upon cooling.
Anatectic melts are produced by peritectic reactions, but they are much less evolved than magmatic melts because they have not separated from their parental rocks. The composition of anatectic melts may change toward the magmatic melts through high-degree fractional crystallization. Fractional crystallisation serves to reduce a melt in iron, titanium and sodium, enrich the melt in potassium and silicon – alkali feldspar and quartz, are two of the defining constituents of granite; this process operates regardless of the origin of parental magmas to granites, regardless of their chemistry. The composition and origin of any magma that differentiates into granite leave certain petrological evidence as to what the granite's parental rock was; the final texture and composition of a granite are distinctive as to its parental rock. For instance, a granite, derived from partial melting of meta
A trilithon is a structure consisting of two large vertical stones supporting a third stone set horizontally across the top. It is used in the context of megalithic monuments; the most famous trilithons are those of Stonehenge in England, those found in the Megalithic temples of Malta, both of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Osireion in Egypt. The word trilithon is derived from the Greek "having three stones" and was first used by William Stukeley; the term describes the groups of three stones in the Hunebed tombs of the Netherlands and the three massive stones forming part of the wall of the Roman Temple of Jupiter at Baalbek, Lebanon. Far from Europe and the Middle East, another famous trilithon is the Haʻamonga ʻa Maui in Tonga, Polynesia. A group of three horizontally lying giant stones, which form part of the podium of the Roman Jupiter temple of Baalbek, are called a "Trilithon", although they do not fit the above definition; the location of the megalithic structures is atop of a hill in the region, known as Tel Baalbek.
Numerous archaeological expeditions have gone to the site starting in the 19th century German and French groups, research continued into the 20th century. Each one of these stones is 19 metres long, 4.2 metres high, 3.6 metres thick and weighs around 800 tonnes. The supporting stone layer beneath features a number of stones which weigh an estimated 350 tonnes and are 11 metres wide. In the quarry nearby, two Roman building blocks, which were intended for the same podium, surpass 1,000 tonnes, they have not been used since their extraction in ancient times. Dolmen Megalithic architectural elements Adam, Jean-Pierre, "À propos du trilithon de Baalbek: Le transport et la mise en oeuvre des mégalithes", Syria, 54: 31–63, doi:10.3406/syria.1977.6623 Ruprechtsberger, Erwin M. "Vom Steinbruch zum Jupitertempel von Heliopolis/Baalbek", Linzer Archäologische Forschungen, 30: 7–56 Yule, Paul A. "Cross-roads – Early and Late Iron Age South-eastern Arabia", Abhandlungen Deutsche Orient-Gesellschaft, 30: 73–77
The Beqaa Valley transliterated as Bekaa, Biqâ and Becaa and known in Classical antiquity as Coele-Syria, is a fertile valley in eastern Lebanon. It is Lebanon's most important farming region. Industry flourishes in Beqaa that related to agriculture; the Beqaa is located about 30 km east of Beirut. The valley is situated between Mount Lebanon to Anti-Lebanon mountains to the east, it forms the northeasternmost extension of the Great Rift Valley, which stretches from Syria to the Red Sea. Beqaa Valley is 16 kilometres wide on average, it has a Mediterranean climate of wet snowy winters and dry, warm summers. The region receives limited rainfall in the north, because Mount Lebanon creates a rain shadow that blocks precipitation coming from the sea; the northern section has an average annual rainfall of 230 millimetres, compared to 610 millimetres in the central valley. Two rivers originate in the valley: the Orontes, which flows north into Syria and Turkey, the Litani, which flows south and west to the Mediterranean Sea.
From the 1st century BC, when the region was part of the Roman Empire, the Beqaa Valley served as a source of grain for the Roman provinces of the Levant. Today the valley makes up 40 percent of Lebanon's arable land; the northern end of the valley, with its scarce rainfall and less fertile soils, is used as grazing land by pastoral nomads migrants from the Syrian Desert. Farther south, more fertile soils support crops of wheat, corn and vegetables, with vineyards and orchards centered on Zahlé; the valley produces hashish and cultivates opium poppies, which are exported as part of the illegal drug trade. Since 1957 the Litani hydroelectricity project—a series of canals and a dam located at Lake Qaraoun in the southern end of the valley—has improved irrigation to farms in Beqaa Valley. Zahlé is the administrative capital of the Beqaa Governorate, it lies just north of the main Beirut -- Damascus highway. The majority of Zahlé's residents are Lebanese Christian, the majority being Melkite Greek Catholic, Maronite Catholic, Greek Orthodox Christians.
The town of Anjar, situated in the eastern part of the valley, has a predominately Armenian Lebanese population and is famous for its 8th-century Arab ruins. The majority of the inhabitants of the northern districts of Beqaa and Hermel, are Lebanese Shia, with the exception of the town of Deir el Ahmar, whose inhabitants are Christians; the Baalbeck and Hermel districts have a Christian and Sunni minority situated further north along the border with Syria. The western and southern districts of the valley have a mixed population of Muslims and Druze; the town of Joub Janine with a population of about 12,000, is situated midway in the valley, its population is Sunni. Joub Janine is the governmental center of the region known as Western Beqaa, with municipal services like the serail, the main government building in the area, emergency medical services, a fire department, a courthouse. Other towns in the Western Beqaa district are Machghara, Kamed al Lawz, Qab Elias, Yohmor; these towns are all a mix of different Lebanese religious confessions.
Rachaiya al Wadi, east of the Western Beqaa district, is home to Lebanon's share of Mount Hermon and borders Syria also. The district's capital Rachaiya al Wadi, is famous for its old renovated souk and what is known as the castle of independence, in which Lebanon's pre-independence leaders were held by French troops before being released in 1943; the southern section of the district is inhabited with Druze and Christian Lebanese, while the other northern section is inhabited by Sunni Lebanese. Due to wars and the unstable economic and political conditions Lebanon faced in the past, with difficulties some farmers still face today, many previous inhabitants of the valley left for coastal cities in Lebanon or emigrated from the country altogether, with the majority residing in the Americas or Australia; the ancient Roman ruins of Baalbek, an ancient city named for the Canaanite god Baal. The Romans renamed Baalbek "Heliopolis" and built an impressive temple complex, including temples to Bacchus, Jupiter and the Sun.
Today, the ruins are the site of the Baalbeck International Festival, which attracts artists and performance groups from around the world. The Umayyad ruins of Anjar Our Lady of Bekaa, a Marian shrine located in Zahlé, with panoramic views of the valley. Lebanon's tallest minaret, located in the town of Kherbet Rouha The Sanctuary of Our Lady of Bechouat Phoenician Ruins, located in the village of Kamid al lawz Roman Ruins, located in the town of Qab Elias The Aammiq Wetland habitat for a myriad of migrating and resident birds and butterflies The Pyramid tower of Hermel at the northern end of the valley The famous Wadi Arayesh area of Zahlé, consisting of beautiful open air restaurants and arcades located on the river side of the Berdaouni river, a stream linking to the Litani The Beqaa Valley is home to Lebanon's famous vineyards and wineries. Wine making is a tradition. With an average altitude of 1000 m above sea level, the valley's climate is suitable to vineyards. Abundant winter rain and much sunshine in the summer helps the grapes ripen easily.
There are more than a dozen wineries in the Beqaa Valley, producing over six million bottles a year. Beqaa Valley wineries include: Château Ka Château Kefraya Château Khoury Château Ksara Château Marsyas Château Musar