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Tacitus
Augustus  AD 275 - 276

Marcus Claudius Tacitus (ca. AD 275 - 276):
Half-brother of Florian.

Marcus Claudius Tacitus came to throne in a remarkable way, at least for the times: by being nominated by the Senate and duly acclaimed by the troops after the murder of Aurelian in September 275. He might have been the army’s choice though, perhaps an elderly general, being 75 at his accession we are told, but likely a good deal younger, and a very wealthy senator. Early in 276 he set off to Asia Minor to stave off an attack of the Heruli, a Germanic confederacy signed up by Aurelian to assist him against the Persians. The expedition was a success but Tacitus did not outlive it long. In July of that year he was murdered by his troops in Cappadocia after a reign of only six months. The stated reason for his murder was discontent caused by the exaction of his relative Maximinus in Syria. His clear nepotism however, and the likelihood of his being unable to control his subordinates speak against his claim to be “Restitutor Rei Publicae” and a honest, frugal man with a dislike of ostentation.

Mints: Antioch, Gaul (uncertain location), Rome, Serdica, Siscia, Ticinum.

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