Zosimus, New History 2.44

Zosimus (Greek Ζώσιμος): Early Byzantine, pagan author of a history of the Roman Empire, published in the first quarter of the sixth century CE.

The translation of ZosimusNew History offered here was printed in 1814 by W. Green and T. Chaplin in London, and was probably prepared by J. Davis of the Military Chronicle and Military Classics Office. The translator is anonymous. The text was found at Tertullian.org. The notes were added by Jona Lendering.


[2.44.1] Meantime Constantius advanced from the east against Magnentius, but deemed it best first to win over Vetranio to his interest, as it was difficult to oppose two rebels at once. On the other hand, Magnentius used great endeavors to make Vetranio his friend, and thus to put an end to the war against Constantius. 

[2.44.2] Both therefore sent agents to Vetranio, who chose to adopt the friendship of Constantius rather than that of Magnentius. The ambassadors of Magnentius returned without effecting their purpose. Constantius desired that both armies might join, to undertake the war against Magnentius.

[2.44.3] To which proposal Vetranio readily assented, and they seated themselves on a throne provided for the occasion. Constantius, speaking first according to his dignity, endeavored to remind the soldiers of his father's munificence, and of the oaths they had taken to he true to his children. He then told them, that they ought not to suffer Magnentius to go unpunished, who had murdered the son of Constantine, with whom they had fought many battles, and had been generously remunerated. 

[2.44.4] When the soldiers heard this, having been previously corrupted by valuable presents, they cried out, that they would have no mock emperors, and immediately began to strip the purple from Vetranio, and pulled him from the throne with the determination to reduce him to a private station. Constantius would not suffer them to injure him, and therefore sent him into Bithynia, where he allowed him a competency for life. He had not remained there long without employment before he died.