Aulus Caecina Alienus

Aulus Caecina Alienus

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Aulus Caecina Alienus, Roman general, was born in Vicetia (modern Vicenza
Vicenza
Vicenza , a city in north-eastern Italy, is the capital of the eponymous province in the Veneto region, at the northern base of the Monte Berico, straddling the Bacchiglione...

).

He was quaestor
Quaestor
A Quaestor was a type of public official in the "Cursus honorum" system who supervised financial affairs. In the Roman Republic a quaestor was an elected official whereas, with the autocratic government of the Roman Empire, quaestors were simply appointed....

of Hispania Baetica
Hispania Baetica
Hispania Baetica was one of three Imperial Roman provinces in Hispania, . Hispania Baetica was bordered to the west by Lusitania, and to the northeast by Hispania Tarraconensis. Baetica was part of Al-Andalus under the Moors in the 8th century and approximately corresponds to modern Andalucia...

 (southern Iberia
Iberian Peninsula
The Iberian Peninsula , sometimes called Iberia, is located in the extreme southwest of Europe and includes the modern-day sovereign states of Spain, Portugal and Andorra, as well as the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar...

) in AD 68
68
Year 68 was a leap year starting on Friday of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Asconius and Thraculus...

. On the death of Nero
Nero
Nero , was Roman Emperor from 54 to 68, and the last in the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Nero was adopted by his great-uncle Claudius to become his heir and successor, and succeeded to the throne in 54 following Claudius' death....

, he attached himself to Galba
Galba
Galba , was Roman Emperor for seven months from 68 to 69. Galba was the governor of Hispania Tarraconensis, and made a bid for the throne during the rebellion of Julius Vindex...

, who appointed him to the command of Legio IV Macedonica
Legio IV Macedonica
Legio quarta Macedonica , was a Roman legion levied by Julius Caesar in 48 BC with Italian legionaries. The legion was disbanded in 70 by Emperor Vespasian. The legion symbols were a bull and a capricorn.In 48 BC, the Roman Republic was decaying rapidly...

 at Mogontiacum in Germania Superior
Germania Superior
Germania Superior , so called for the reason that it lay upstream of Germania Inferior, was a province of the Roman Empire. It comprised an area of western Switzerland, the French Jura and Alsace regions, and southwestern Germany...

 (Upper Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

). Having been prosecuted for embezzling
Embezzlement
Embezzlement is the act of dishonestly appropriating or secreting assets by one or more individuals to whom such assets have been entrusted....

 public money, Caecina went over to Vitellius
Vitellius
Vitellius , was Roman Emperor for eight months, from 16 April to 22 December 69. Vitellius was acclaimed Emperor following the quick succession of the previous emperors Galba and Otho, in a year of civil war known as the Year of the Four Emperors...

, who sent him with a large army into Italy.

Caecina crossed the Alps, but was defeated near Cremona
Cremona
Cremona is a city and comune in northern Italy, situated in Lombardy, on the left bank of the Po River in the middle of the Pianura Padana . It is the capital of the province of Cremona and the seat of the local City and Province governments...

 by Suetonius Paulinus
Gaius Suetonius Paulinus
Gaius Suetonius Paulinus, also spelled Paullinus, was a Roman general best known as the commander who defeated the rebellion of Boudica.-Career:...

, the chief general of Otho
Otho
Otho , was Roman Emperor for three months, from 15 January to 16 April 69. He was the second emperor of the Year of the four emperors.- Birth and lineage :...

. Subsequently, in conjunction with Fabius Valens
Fabius Valens
Fabius Valens of Anagnia was a Roman commander favoured by Nero. In 69 he was commander of Legio I Germanica based in Germania Inferior...

, Caecina defeated Otho at the decisive battle of Bedriacum
Battle of Bedriacum
The Battle of Bedriacum refers to two battles fought during the Year of the Four Emperors near the village of Bedriacum , about from the town of Cremona in northern Italy...

 (Betriacum).

The incapacity of Vitellius tempted Vespasian
Vespasian
Vespasian , was Roman Emperor from 69 AD to 79 AD. Vespasian was the founder of the Flavian dynasty, which ruled the Empire for a quarter century. Vespasian was descended from a family of equestrians, who rose into the senatorial rank under the Emperors of the Julio-Claudian dynasty...

 to take up arms against him. Caecina, who had been entrusted with the repression of the revolt, turned traitor, and tried to persuade his army to go over to Vespasian, but was thrown into chains by the soldiers.

After the overthrow of Vitellius, he was released, and taken into favor by the new emperor. But he could not remain loyal to anyone. In 79 he was implicated, along with Eprius Marcellus
Titus Clodius Eprius Marcellus
Titus Clodius Eprius Marcellus was a prominent Roman senator, twice Consul, best known for his prosecution of the Stoic senator Thrasea Paetus and his bitter quarrel with Helvidius Priscus...

, in a conspiracy against Vespasian, and was put to death by order of Titus
Titus
Titus , was Roman Emperor from 79 to 81. A member of the Flavian dynasty, Titus succeeded his father Vespasian upon his death, thus becoming the first Roman Emperor to come to the throne after his own father....

.

Caecina is described by Tacitus as a man of handsome presence and boundless ambition, a gifted orator and a great favourite with the soldiers.

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