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Flavia Gemina

How to address Domitian in AD 80

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I know I'm coming in late on this thread, but I found something that supports what Gaius Paulinus Maximus and Primus Pilus here have already written about Domitian being addressed as "Caesar" prior to becoming emperor.

 

In the Spring 1964 journal of the Classical Association of Canada (Phoenix), historian and author K.H. Waters wrote in his article "The Character of Domitian":

 

In public life, Domitian had begun with the praetorship in his nineteenth year, and other honours accompanied this; he had already been hailed "Caesar" by the troops -- and perhaps by the Senate too -- and was encouraged to emphasize this claim to the succession throughout Vespasian's reign..."

 

Also, Tacitus, in Book IV of his Histories, wrote: "Domitian had entered into possession of the title and residence of Caesar, but not yet applying himself to business, was playing the part of a son of the throne with debauchery and intrigue... Then, on the resignation of Frontinus, Caesar Domitian assumed the office of praetor of the city." (Translated by Alfred John Church and William Jackson Brodribb.)

 

As for where Caesar Domitian stood with his brother in the year 80... Flavia, I think you can safely rule out "Imperator" as one of his titles while his brother was still alive. Mark P. O. Morford wrote the following in an article ("The Training of Three Roman Emperors") for the Spring 1968 issue of Phoenix:

 

Domitian himself believed that he would be Titus' associate on Vespasian's death; it must have been a bitter blow that Titus looked upon him merely as consors atque successor (Suet. Tit. 9) and not as particeps imperii. He was consul ordinarius in 80, but was not granted tribunicia potestas or saluted as imperator.

 

-- Nephele

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... Domitian himself believed that he would be Titus' associate on Vespasian's death; it must have been a bitter blow that Titus looked upon him merely as consors atque successor (Suet. Tit. 9) and not as particeps imperii. He was consul ordinarius in 80, but was not granted tribunicia potestas or saluted as imperator.

 

Thanks, Nephele! That's probably why he bumped off his big brother!

 

Or did he?

 

Another question for another thread...

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