Favourite Roman Empress (Up to two choices)

Who is/are your favourite Roman empresses (up to two choices)?

  • Agrippina the Elder

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Plotina

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Faustina the Elder

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Faustina the Younger

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Julia Maesa

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Julia Mamaea

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Pulcheria

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Aelia Eudocia

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Honoria

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Licinia Eudoxia

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    26

Theodoric

Ad Honorem
Mar 2012
2,952
Yötebory Sveriya
I have to ask Theodoric how can Zenobia be a Roman empress if she carried out a rebellion against the Roman Empire?
Constantine was also a rebel and counted among the very greatest of Roman Emperors. He just happened to seize Rome. But other less successful rebel Emperors are counted from the third century crisis aside from Zenobia, and even in the 5th century there was Constantine III. The term Roman Emperor/Empress is anachronistic anyway, with arbitrary inclusions and exclusions, so it’s fair to fit Zenobia to the definition.
 
Oct 2011
468
Croatia
Constantine was also a rebel and counted among the very greatest of Roman Emperors. He just happened to seize Rome. But other less successful rebel Emperors are counted from the third century crisis aside from Zenobia, and even in the 5th century there was Constantine III. The term Roman Emperor/Empress is anachronistic anyway, with arbitrary inclusions and exclusions, so it’s fair to fit Zenobia to the definition.
Maybe, maybe not. Question is whether Zenobia wanted to take control of Roman Empire, or else aimed at separatism. If latter, she cannot be called Roman Emperor.
 

Theodoric

Ad Honorem
Mar 2012
2,952
Yötebory Sveriya
Maybe, maybe not. Question is whether Zenobia wanted to take control of Roman Empire, or else aimed at separatism. If latter, she cannot be called Roman Emperor.
But that's only your opinion. That's never been a requirement in any mainstream historical accounts.
For all intents and purposes, Zenobia was, if not a Roman Empress, of rank equal to one and should. There's no need or use for controversy here.
 
Oct 2018
1,690
Sydney
It's worth bearing in mind that wanting to take control of the empire and separatism in the sense of breaking free of the Roman Empire are not the only two options. Considering the fact that she represented herself as Augusta, that her son took Roman titles (Augustus, Imperator, Corrector Orientis Totius) and that she had coins minted for Aurelian up until the point of Aurelian's invasion, it seems apparent that she wished to represent her rule in Roman terms. She, like many others, saw value in the ideological concept of the Roman Empire, which was increasingly taking on a life of its own away from the city of Rome itself. Emperors were located in the capital less and less, they could seize power without asking for senatorial approval, all free-born males in the empire were now citizens, and Caracalla had to remove a king of Edessa from power for pushing Romanization onto his subjects too vigorously. This was the world that would enable something like an Eastern Roman Empire based in Constantinople. Zenobia could therefore present herself as a Roman ruler without controlling the capital, and may well have been content to rule her corner of the empire on a par with Aurelian (albeit intending to expand her share in the east [Egypt, Arabia, Asia Minor], or perhaps rather retaking territories that had been loyal to Odainath). In this sense she may be viewed as being similar to the Romano-Gallic emperors (Postumus, Victorinus, Tetricus) and the Romano-British emperors (Carausius, Allectus). These emperors also presented themselves as Roman Augusti, Imperatores, Caesars, Patres Patriae and so on, but they remained in their corners of the empire.
 
Oct 2019
3
Lebanon
Voted Julia Domna and Zenobia; allegedly Zenobia wore her hair the same way as Julia Domna did; and if Zenobia is actually a descendant or a a distant relative of the Emesene royal family as some claim, those two may have even been related.
 
Oct 2018
1,690
Sydney
So glad this thread prompted me to read up on Zenobia. But c'mon, no Irene??? She blinded and killed her own son when he started getting too independent. If that's not entertainment value, I don't know what is.
It's certainly entertaining! I do regret not including her in the poll, but I will be counting in-thread nominations of Irene when presenting results.
 

At Each Kilometer

Ad Honorem
Sep 2012
4,004
Bulgaria
The idea at the time was that the roman emperor was anointed by the God to govern the romans and civilized world, so as representative and symbol of God here on the Earth he needed to be perfect, meaning without any bodily disfigurement. So it was usual to disqualify competitor for the office by blinding him or mutilation of some sort like rhinotomia / cutting of the nose of the opponent as in the case of Justinian II / rarely hands or feet, it was seen most likely as a humane way of eliminating rivals to the throne. Nothing special, common roman practice.