Augustus (Estern Roman Empire) AD 379 - 395
Flavius Theodosius (AD 346 - 395):
Son-in-law of Valentinian I;
Brother-in-law of Valentinian II;
Husband of Aelia Flaccilla and Galla (sister of Valentinian II);
Father of Arcadius and Honorius by Aelia Flaccilla;
Father of Galla Placidia by Galla;
Father-in-law of Constantius III and Aelia Eudoxia;
Grandfather of Honoria, Valentinian III, Aelia Pulceria and Theodosius II.
AD 379 - 383 - Sole Reign
AD 383 - 395 - co-Augustus with Arcadius
Paralel rulers of the Western Roman Empire:
Gratian (AD 367 - 383)
Valentinian II (AD 375 - 392)
Magnus Maximus - Usurper (AD 383 - 388)
Flavius Victor - Usurper (AD 387 - 3388)
Eugenius - Usurper (AD 392 - 394)
Honorius (AD 393 - 423)
Flavius Theodosius, known as “the Great” was born in Spain in the family of a military officer who at one time held the office of supreme cavalry commander but ended up being executed for high treason by Valentinian in 375. Theodosius was not harmed, however, and having considerable military and administrative experience of his own, was called upon by Gratian to assume the command of the Danubian limes after the death of Valens in 378. After distinguishing himself, in January 379 he was raised to the rank of Augustus.
His accession marked the beginning of a new policy toward the Germanic pressure on the imperial borders, the settlement of whole tribes and confederations on imperial soil as military allies, foederati. This police sped up the Germanization and barbarization of the army and population. To pay for his enlarged army, Theodosius tightened up the tax system and eliminated tax loopholes, severely curtailing the remaining personal liberties of his subjects. He was a devout Christian in the Nicene tradition and took severe action against heretics and prohibited pagan practices such as divination. He also augmented the official territory of the eastern portion of the empire, after removing Magnus Maximus from the stage in 387. Urgent pressures on the Danube prevented him from fully incorporating the West and he left Italy in 390, designating his German Master of Soldiers, Arbogast, as his lieutenant in Italy. Arbogast soon set up a puppet emperor of how own, however, and it was after crushing this new attempt at secession in 394, that Theodosius emerged as the ruler of the entire empire. His success was fleeting, though, for five months later, in January 395 he died. Upon his death the empire was once again, and this time forever, divided between his sons Arcadius and Honorius.
Mints: Alexandria, Antioch, Aquileia, Arelate, Constantinopolis, Cyzicus, Heraclea, Londinium, Lugdunum, Mediolanum, Nicomedia, Rome, Sirmium, Siscia, Thessalonica, Treveri.
List all Theodosius I coins in the Catalog.