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Maximinus Thrax

Bust of Maximinus Thrax. Musei Capitolini, Roma (Italy). Photo Jona Lendering.
Maximinus Thrax (Musei Capitolini, Roma)
Maximinus Thrax: emperor of the Roman world (235-238).


  • ±172: Gaius Julius Maximinus (?) 
  • February 235: Imperator Caesar Gaius Julius Verus Maximinus Augustus 
  • 236: Imperator Caesar Gaius Julius Verus Maximinus Germanicus maximus Augustus
  • April 238: lynched by soldiers
Nickname: Thrax, "the Thracian" (not recorded before the fourth century)

Successor of: Severus Alexander


  • married to: Caecilia Paulina
  • children: Gaius Julius Verus Maximus

Early career:

  • ±172: Born in Thrace or Moesia (Nova?)
  • equestrian career during the reign of Septimius Severus
  • prefect of a legion (I, II, or III Parthica?)
  • praeses pro legato in Mauretania Tingitana
  • prefect of Mesopotamia
  • joined Severus Alexander's Persian campaign
  • prefect of the recruits in the Rhineland

Main deeds:

  • 235 Becomes emperor after the death of Severus Alexander and Julia Mamaea; recognized by the Senate; wages war against the Germans (battle of Harzhorn); a competitor, Magnus, is executed
  • 236 Consul (with Marcus Pupienus Africanus); victory over the Alamans; proceeds against the Sarmatians
  • 238 Insurrection of Gordianus I and Gordianus II; they are defeated by Capellianus; the Senate elects Pupienus and Balbinus; Maximinus is killed by his own soldiers near Aquileia
  • Damnatio memoriae
Succeeded by: Pupienus and Balbinus



  • M.F. Petraccia Lucernoni & M. Traverso, "A proposito di Massimino il Trace", in: Yann Le Bohec, Les légions de Rome sous le Haut-Empire (2000 Lyon) 675-684
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