Domitian(redirected from Caesar Domitianus Augustus)
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(full name, Titus Flavius Domitianus). Born in 51 in Rome; died there in 96. Roman emperor from 81, the last of the Flavian dynasty.
Domitian was the son of Vespasian and his father’s active ally in the struggle for the imperial throne. He tried to gain popularity among the soldiers by raising their pay and among the Roman plebeians through handouts, spectacles, and games. Like his father, Domitian supported the provincial cities and granted Roman citizenship to the provincials. He strengthened the bureaucratic machine and his power by curtailing the rights of the Senate, causing the latter’s opposition. In 89 he was defeated by the Dacians and forced to conclude a peace treaty with them, according to which the Romans had to pay them an annual tribute and supply them with craftsmen and artisans. This further increased the dissatisfaction of the Senate, leading in turn to retaliation by Domitian. He was killed by his own freedmen, who had plotted against him.