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Elagabalus(ĕləgăb`ələs), c.205–222, Roman emperor (218–22). He was a priest of the local sun god, Elagabalus, at Emesa and was named Varius Avitus Bassianus. He was a cousin of CaracallaCaracalla
, 188–217, Roman emperor (211–17); son of Septimius Severus. His real name was Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, and he received his nickname from the caracalla, a Gallic tunic he regularly wore.
..... Click the link for more information. ; according to the claims (almost certainly false) of his ambitious mother and grandmother, he was the son of Caracalla. He was chosen by the troops in Syria as emperor in opposition to Macrinus, who had killed and succeeded Caracalla. When Macrinus was defeated and killed at Antioch, Heliogabalus became emperor as Marcus Aurelius Antoninus. His reign was a tragic farce. He imported the cult of which he was priest, and Rome was shocked and disgusted by the indecency of the rites as well as by the private life of the emperor, who gave high offices to an actor, a charioteer, and a barber. His grandmother, Julia Maesa, induced him to adopt his young cousin, Alexander SeverusAlexander Severus
(Marcus Aurelius Alexander Severus) , d. 235, Roman emperor (222–35), b. Syria. His name was changed (221) from Alexius Bassianus when he was adopted as the successor to Heliogabalus.
..... Click the link for more information. , but Heliogabalus later tried to have the boy killed. Heliogabalus and his mother were murdered in an uprising of the Praetorian Guard. Alexander Severus succeeded.
(also Elagabalus; imperial name, Caesar Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus). Born 204 in Emesa, Syria; died 222. Roman emperor from 218.
In 217, Heliogabalus became a priest of the Syrian god Elagabalus in Emesa; he took his name from that of the god. He was proclaimed emperor by the legions in Syria. Seeking to make Elagabalus the supreme god of the Roman state, he erected a temple to Elagabalus on the Palatine in Rome. His wastefulness and debauchery gave rise to strong protests among the military and other strata of the population. Heliogabalus was murdered by praetorians.