Gordian III

Article

May 22, 2022

Mark Antony Gordian (lat. Marcus Antonius Gordianus), better known in Roman historiography as Gordian III, was a Roman emperor in 238-244. Gordian III was the grandson of Gordian I. After the assassination of the emperor Maximinus Thracian and the short-term reign of the senatorial henchmen Balbinus and Pupienus, the Praetorian Guard proclaimed the young Gordian emperor. In 242-244, he waged war on the Danube border, and then announced a campaign against the Sassanid state, during which he died in Mesopotamia.

Biography

Origin

The future emperor Mark Antony Gordian was born in Rome on January 20, 225. According to another version, Gordian III was born in 226. The question of who his parents were remains highly controversial. According to the Augustan History, his parents were the daughter of Gordian I Mecius Faustina and the senator Junius Balbus. However, at the same time, the writer himself writes that, perhaps, the father is Gordian II, the son of Gordian I. Modern historians have accepted the version that the mother of Gordian III was the daughter of Gordian I, and the father was a Roman senator, whose name is unknown (the above names, taken from the History of the Augustans, are considered fictitious). Pseudo-Aurelius Victor, speaking of Gordian's father, applies the term "clarissimo" to him, which means "noble" in translation. Apparently, the father of Gordian III died before the start of the African uprising in 238, during which his son was proclaimed emperor.

Appearance and personality traits

The only source that gives the most complete description of the personal qualities and appearance of Emperor Gordian III is the collection of imperial biographies "History of the Augusts": “Gordian was a cheerful, handsome, courteous young man - everyone liked him, he was pleasant in life, he was distinguished by education - in a word, he had all the data, except for age, to be emperor <...> he was loved like none of the sovereigns, and the people, and the senate, and the soldiers. The bust, located in the National Museum in Rome, depicts Gordian as a young man with an oblong head, large eyes, full lips and a deep dimple in his chin.

Ascension to the throne

In 235, after the assassination of Emperor Alexander Severus in Mogontsiak, the capital of the province of Germania Inferior, Max