Stilicho

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Flavius Stilicho (ca. 359 – August 22, 408) was a high-ranking general (magister militum
Magister militum
Magister militum was a top-level military command used in the later Roman Empire, dating from the reign of Constantine. Used alone, the term referred to the senior military officer of the Empire...

), Patrician and Consul
Consul
Consul was the highest elected office of the Roman Republic and an appointive office under the Empire. The title was also used in other city states and also revived in modern states, notably in the First French Republic...

 of the Western Roman Empire
Western Roman Empire
The Western Roman Empire was the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian in 285; the other half of the Roman Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire, commonly referred to today as the Byzantine Empire....

, notably of Vandal
Vandals
The Vandals were an East Germanic tribe that entered the late Roman Empire during the 5th century. The Vandals under king Genseric entered Africa in 429 and by 439 established a kingdom which included the Roman Africa province, besides the islands of Sicily, Corsica, Sardinia and the Balearics....

 birth. Despised by the Roman population for his Germanic
Germanic peoples
The Germanic peoples are an Indo-European ethno-linguistic group of Northern European origin, identified by their use of the Indo-European Germanic languages which diversified out of Proto-Germanic during the Pre-Roman Iron Age.Originating about 1800 BCE from the Corded Ware Culture on the North...

 ancestry and Arian
Arianism
Arianism is the theological teaching attributed to Arius , a Christian presbyter from Alexandria, Egypt, concerning the relationship of the entities of the Trinity and the precise nature of the Son of God as being a subordinate entity to God the Father...

 beliefs, Stilicho
Stilicho
Flavius Stilicho was a high-ranking general , Patrician and Consul of the Western Roman Empire, notably of Vandal birth. Despised by the Roman population for his Germanic ancestry and Arian beliefs, Stilicho was in 408 executed along with his wife and son...

 was in 408 executed along with his wife and son. The subsequent massacre of tens of thousands of Gothic
Goths
The Goths were an East Germanic tribe of Scandinavian origin whose two branches, the Visigoths and the Ostrogoths, played an important role in the fall of the Roman Empire and the emergence of Medieval Europe....

 civilians in Italy
Italy
Italy , officially the Italian Republic languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Italy's official name is as follows:;;;;;;;;), is a unitary parliamentary republic in South-Central Europe. To the north it borders France, Switzerland, Austria and...

 provoked Alarics
Alaric I
Alaric I was the King of the Visigoths from 395–410. Alaric is most famous for his sack of Rome in 410, which marked a decisive event in the decline of the Roman Empire....

 invasion of the country the same year.

Career


Stilicho was the son of a Vandal
Vandals
The Vandals were an East Germanic tribe that entered the late Roman Empire during the 5th century. The Vandals under king Genseric entered Africa in 429 and by 439 established a kingdom which included the Roman Africa province, besides the islands of Sicily, Corsica, Sardinia and the Balearics....

 father and a Roman mother. Despite his father's origins there is little to suggest that Stilicho considered himself anything other than a Roman, and his high rank within the Empire suggests that he was probably not Arian
Arianism
Arianism is the theological teaching attributed to Arius , a Christian presbyter from Alexandria, Egypt, concerning the relationship of the entities of the Trinity and the precise nature of the Son of God as being a subordinate entity to God the Father...

 like many Germanic Christians but rather a Nicene Christian like his patron Theodosius I
Theodosius I
Theodosius I , also known as Theodosius the Great, was Roman Emperor from 379 to 395. Theodosius was the last emperor to rule over both the eastern and the western halves of the Roman Empire. During his reign, the Goths secured control of Illyricum after the Gothic War, establishing their homeland...

, who declared Nicene Christianity the official religion of the Empire.
Stilicho joined the Roman army and rose through the ranks during the reign of Theodosius I, who ruled the Eastern half of the Roman Empire from Constantinople, and who was to become the last Emperor to rule both the Eastern and Western
Western Roman Empire
The Western Roman Empire was the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian in 285; the other half of the Roman Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire, commonly referred to today as the Byzantine Empire....

 halves of the Empire jointly. In 383, Theodosius sent him as an envoy to the court of the Persian king Shapur III
Shapur III
Shapur III was the eleventh Sassanid King of Persia from 383 to 388. Shapur III succeeded his father Ardashir II in the year 383.- Treaty with Rome :...

 in Ctesiphon
Ctesiphon
Ctesiphon, the imperial capital of the Parthian Arsacids and of the Persian Sassanids, was one of the great cities of ancient Mesopotamia.The ruins of the city are located on the east bank of the Tigris, across the river from the Hellenistic city of Seleucia...

 to negotiate a peace settlement relating to the partition of Armenia
Armenia
Armenia , officially the Republic of Armenia , is a landlocked mountainous country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia...

. Upon his return to Constantinople at the successful conclusion of peace talks, Stilicho was promoted (to comes stabuli) and later to general (magister militum). The Emperor recognized that Stilicho could be a valuable ally, and to form a blood tie with him, Theodosius married his adopted niece Serena
Serena (Roman)
Serena was a noblewoman of the late Western Roman Empire.She was the adopted daughter of Theodosius. Theodosius adopted her as his daughter, and in 384 arranged her marriage to a rising military officer, Stilicho...

 to Stilicho. The marriage took place around the time of Stilicho's mission to Persia, and ultimately Serena gave birth to a son, who was named Eucherius
Eucherius
Eucherius may refer to:*Saint Eucherius of Lyon, 5th century bishop*Saint Eucherius of Orléans, 8th century bishop*Eucherius was the son of Stilicho and was executed with his parents in 408...

, and two daughters, Maria
Maria, daughter of Stilicho
Maria was the first Empress consort of Honorius, Western Roman Emperor.-Family:She was a daughter of Stilicho, magister militum of the Western Roman Empire, and Serena. Maria was a sister of Eucherius and Thermantia. "De Consulatu Stilichonis" by Claudian reports that her unnamed paternal...

 and Thermantia
Thermantia
Aemilia Materna Thermantia was the second Empress consort of Honorius, Western Roman Emperor.-Family:She was a daughter of Stilicho, magister militum of the Western Roman Empire, and Serena. Thermantia was a sister of Eucherius and Maria...

.

After the death of the Western Emperor Valentinian II
Valentinian II
Flavius Valentinianus , commonly known as Valentinian II, was Roman Emperor from 375 to 392.-Early Life and Accession :...

 in 392, Stilicho helped raise the army that Theodosius would lead to victory at the Battle of the Frigidus
Battle of the Frigidus
The Battle of the Frigidus, also called the Battle of the Frigid River, was fought between September 5–6 394, between the army of the Eastern Emperor Theodosius I and the army of Western Roman ruler Eugenius....

, and was one of the Eastern leaders in that battle. One of his comrades during the campaign was the Visigothic warlord Alaric
Alaric I
Alaric I was the King of the Visigoths from 395–410. Alaric is most famous for his sack of Rome in 410, which marked a decisive event in the decline of the Roman Empire....

, who commanded a substantial number of Gothic auxiliaries. Alaric would go on to become Stilicho's chief adversary during his later career as the head of the Western Roman armies. Stilicho distinguished himself at the Frigidus, and Theodosius, exhausted by the campaign, saw him as a man worthy of responsibility for the future safety of the Empire. The last emperor of a united Rome appointed Stilicho guardian of his son, Honorius
Honorius (emperor)
Honorius , was Western Roman Emperor from 395 to 423. He was the younger son of emperor Theodosius I and his first wife Aelia Flaccilla, and brother of the eastern emperor Arcadius....

 shortly before his death in 395.

Honorius becomes Emperor


Following the death of Theodosius, Honorius became emperor
Emperor
An emperor is a monarch, usually the sovereign ruler of an empire or another type of imperial realm. Empress, the female equivalent, may indicate an emperor's wife or a woman who rules in her own right...

 of the Western Roman Empire
Western Roman Empire
The Western Roman Empire was the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian in 285; the other half of the Roman Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire, commonly referred to today as the Byzantine Empire....

, and his brother Arcadius
Arcadius
Arcadius was the Byzantine Emperor from 395 to his death. He was the eldest son of Theodosius I and his first wife Aelia Flaccilla, and brother of the Western Emperor Honorius...

 of the Eastern Roman Empire. Neither proved to be effective emperors, and Stilicho came to be the de facto commander-in-chief of the Roman armies in the West while his rival Rufinus
Rufinus (Byzantine official)
Flavius Rufinus was a 4th century Eastern Roman Empire statesman of Gaulish extraction who served as Praetorian prefect of the East for the emperor Theodosius I, as well as his son Arcadius, under whom Rufinus was the actual power behind the throne.He was the subject of the verse invective In...

 became the power behind the throne in the East. In this capacity, Stilicho proved his abilities energetically, although political manoeuverings by agents of the two imperial courts would hinder him throughout his career.

His first brush with such court politics came in 395. The Visigoths living in Lower Moesia had recently elected Alaric as their king. Alaric broke his treaty with Rome and led his people on a raid into Thrace
Thrace
Thrace is a historical and geographic area in southeast Europe. As a geographical concept, Thrace designates a region bounded by the Balkan Mountains on the north, Rhodope Mountains and the Aegean Sea on the south, and by the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara on the east...

. The army that had been victorious at the Frigidus was still assembled, and Stilicho led it toward Alaric's forces. The armies of the eastern Empire were occupied with Hunnic
Huns
The Huns were a group of nomadic people who, appearing from east of the Volga River, migrated into Europe c. AD 370 and established the vast Hunnic Empire there. Since de Guignes linked them with the Xiongnu, who had been northern neighbours of China 300 years prior to the emergence of the Huns,...

 incursions in Asia Minor
Asia Minor
Asia Minor is a geographical location at the westernmost protrusion of Asia, also called Anatolia, and corresponds to the western two thirds of the Asian part of Turkey...

 and Syria
Syria
Syria , officially the Syrian Arab Republic , is a country in Western Asia, bordering Lebanon and the Mediterranean Sea to the West, Turkey to the north, Iraq to the east, Jordan to the south, and Israel to the southwest....

 so Rufinus attempted to negotiate with Alaric in person. The only results were suspicions in Constantinople that Rufinius was in league with the Goths. Stilicho now marched east against Alaric. According to Claudian
Claudian
Claudian was a Roman poet, who worked for Emperor Honorius and the latter's general Stilicho.A Greek-speaking citizen of Alexandria and probably not a Christian convert, Claudian arrived in Rome before 395. He made his mark with a eulogy of his two young patrons, Probinus and Olybrius, thereby...

, Stilicho was in a position to destroy the Goths, when he was ordered by Arcadius to leave Illyricum
Praetorian prefecture of Illyricum
The praetorian prefecture of Illyricum was one of four praetorian prefectures into which the Late Roman Empire was divided.The administrative centre of the prefecture was Sirmium , and, after 379, Thessalonica...

. Soon after Rufinus was hacked to death by his own soldiers.

Two years later, in 397, Stilicho defeated Alaric's forces in Macedonia
Macedonia (Roman province)
The Roman province of Macedonia was officially established in 146 BC, after the Roman general Quintus Caecilius Metellus defeated Andriscus of Macedon, the last Ancient King of Macedon in 148 BC, and after the four client republics established by Rome in the region were dissolved...

, although Alaric himself escaped into the surrounding mountains. The same year saw him successfully quell the revolt
Gildonic revolt
The Gildonic revolt was a rebellion in the year 398 AD led by Comes Gildo against Roman Emperor Honorius. The revolt was subdued by Flavius Stilicho, the magister militum of the Western Roman empire.-Background:...

 of comes
Comes
Comes , plural comites , is the Latin word for companion, either individually or as a member of a collective known as comitatus, especially the suite of a magnate, in some cases large and/or formal enough to have a specific name, such as a cohors amicorum. The word comes derives from com- "with" +...

Gildo
Gildo
Gildo was a Roman general in the province of Mauretania. He revolted against Honorius and the western empire but was defeated and committed suicide....

 in Africa. The year 400 saw Stilicho accorded the highest honour within the Roman state by being appointed Consul.

Around this time Stilicho may have campaigned successfully against the Scots
Scoti
Scoti or Scotti was the generic name used by the Romans to describe those who sailed from Ireland to conduct raids on Roman Britain. It was thus synonymous with the modern term Gaels...

, Picts
Picts
The Picts were a group of Late Iron Age and Early Mediaeval people living in what is now eastern and northern Scotland. There is an association with the distribution of brochs, place names beginning 'Pit-', for instance Pitlochry, and Pictish stones. They are recorded from before the Roman conquest...

, and Saxons
Saxons
The Saxons were a confederation of Germanic tribes originating on the North German plain. The Saxons earliest known area of settlement is Northern Albingia, an area approximately that of modern Holstein...

 in Britain
Roman Britain
Roman Britain was the part of the island of Great Britain controlled by the Roman Empire from AD 43 until ca. AD 410.The Romans referred to the imperial province as Britannia, which eventually comprised all of the island of Great Britain south of the fluid frontier with Caledonia...

.

In 401
401
Year 401 was a common year starting on Tuesday of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Vincentius and Fravitus...

, two barbarian leaders planned the joint invasion of the Roman Empire - Alaric
Alaric I
Alaric I was the King of the Visigoths from 395–410. Alaric is most famous for his sack of Rome in 410, which marked a decisive event in the decline of the Roman Empire....

 and the Ostrogoth
Ostrogoth
The Ostrogoths were a branch of the Goths , a Germanic tribe who developed a vast empire north of the Black Sea in the 3rd century AD and, in the late 5th century, under Theodoric the Great, established a Kingdom in Italy....

, Radagaisus
Radagaisus
Radagaisus was a Gothic king who led an invasion of Roman Italy in late 405 and the first half of 406. A commited Pagan, Radagaisus evidentily planned to sacrifice the Roman Senators to the gods and burn Rome to the ground. Radagaisus was executed after being defeated by the half-Vandal general...

. Radagaisus
Radagaisus
Radagaisus was a Gothic king who led an invasion of Roman Italy in late 405 and the first half of 406. A commited Pagan, Radagaisus evidentily planned to sacrifice the Roman Senators to the gods and burn Rome to the ground. Radagaisus was executed after being defeated by the half-Vandal general...

, with Alans
Alans
The Alans, or the Alani, occasionally termed Alauni or Halani, were a group of Sarmatian tribes, nomadic pastoralists of the 1st millennium AD who spoke an Eastern Iranian language which derived from Scytho-Sarmatian and which in turn evolved into modern Ossetian.-Name:The various forms of Alan —...

, Sueves, and Vandals
Vandals
The Vandals were an East Germanic tribe that entered the late Roman Empire during the 5th century. The Vandals under king Genseric entered Africa in 429 and by 439 established a kingdom which included the Roman Africa province, besides the islands of Sicily, Corsica, Sardinia and the Balearics....

, attacked first, and invaded Raetia
Raetia
Raetia was a province of the Roman Empire, named after the Rhaetian people. It was bounded on the west by the country of the Helvetii, on the east by Noricum, on the north by Vindelicia, on the west by Cisalpine Gaul and on south by Venetia et Histria...

 (Rhaetia). Stilicho rushed his soldiers to the area, crossed the Danube
Danube
The Danube is a river in the Central Europe and the Europe's second longest river after the Volga. It is classified as an international waterway....

 River, and crushed Radagaisus. Wasting no time, Stilicho turned his attention towards Alaric and his Visigoths, who had invaded Italy. Bravely hastening on in advance of his main body of troops (30,000), he hurled his crack units in a surprise night attack against Alaric's position around Milan
Milan
Milan is the second-largest city in Italy and the capital city of the region of Lombardy and of the province of Milan. The city proper has a population of about 1.3 million, while its urban area, roughly coinciding with its administrative province and the bordering Province of Monza and Brianza ,...

. Alaric
Alaric I
Alaric I was the King of the Visigoths from 395–410. Alaric is most famous for his sack of Rome in 410, which marked a decisive event in the decline of the Roman Empire....

 had to raise the siege of the city. One of his chieftains implored him to retreat, but Alaric refused.

On Easter Sunday in 402, Stilicho defeated Alaric at the Battle of Pollentia
Battle of Pollentia
The Battle of Pollentia was fought on 6 April 402 between the Romans and the Visigoths.-Background:Theodosius I, the last emperor of both eastern and western halves of the Roman Empire, died in 395, leaving his sons Arcadius and Honorius emperors of the East and West, respectively...

, capturing his camp and his wife. Alaric managed to escape with most of his men. This battle was the last victory celebrated in a triumphal march in Rome
Rome
Rome is the capital of Italy and the country's largest and most populated city and comune, with over 2.7 million residents in . The city is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, on the Tiber River within the Lazio region of Italy.Rome's history spans two and a half...

, which was saved for the time being. In 403 at Verona
Verona
Verona ; German Bern, Dietrichsbern or Welschbern) is a city in the Veneto, northern Italy, with approx. 265,000 inhabitants and one of the seven chef-lieus of the region. It is the second largest city municipality in the region and the third of North-Eastern Italy. The metropolitan area of Verona...

, Stilicho again bested Alaric, who as Gibbon
Edward Gibbon
Edward Gibbon was an English historian and Member of Parliament...

 said only escaped by the speed of his horse. A truce was made and Alaric
Alaric I
Alaric I was the King of the Visigoths from 395–410. Alaric is most famous for his sack of Rome in 410, which marked a decisive event in the decline of the Roman Empire....

 went to Illyricum
Praetorian prefecture of Illyricum
The praetorian prefecture of Illyricum was one of four praetorian prefectures into which the Late Roman Empire was divided.The administrative centre of the prefecture was Sirmium , and, after 379, Thessalonica...

. In late 406, Stilicho demanded the return of the eastern half of Illyricum ( which had been transferred to the administrative control of Constantinople by Theodosius), threatening war if the Eastern Roman Empire resisted. The exact reasons for this are unclear, but it is possible that Stilicho planned to employ Alaric and his battle-hardened troops as allies against the bands of Alans
Alans
The Alans, or the Alani, occasionally termed Alauni or Halani, were a group of Sarmatian tribes, nomadic pastoralists of the 1st millennium AD who spoke an Eastern Iranian language which derived from Scytho-Sarmatian and which in turn evolved into modern Ossetian.-Name:The various forms of Alan —...

, Vandals
Vandals
The Vandals were an East Germanic tribe that entered the late Roman Empire during the 5th century. The Vandals under king Genseric entered Africa in 429 and by 439 established a kingdom which included the Roman Africa province, besides the islands of Sicily, Corsica, Sardinia and the Balearics....

 and Sueves that were threatening to invade the West. To do so, Stilicho may have needed to legitimize Alaric's control of Illyricum.

In 405, according to Rutilius Namatianus, De Reditu 51-60, Stilicho ordered the destruction of the Sibylline Books
Sibylline Books
The Sibylline Books or Libri Sibyllini were a collection of oracular utterances, set out in Greek hexameters, purchased from a sibyl by the last king of Rome, Tarquinius Superbus, and consulted at momentous crises through the history of the Republic and the Empire...

. The reasons for this are unknown, and the story cannot be verified.

Downfall


Despite his successes against the Goths he failed to stop the barbarians from crossing of the Rhine
Crossing of the Rhine
31 December 406, is the often-repeated date of the crossing of the Rhine by a mixed group of barbarians that included Vandals, Alans and Suebi...

 on 31 December 406. This crossing initiated a wave of destruction of Roman cities and military revolt in Britannia
Roman Britain
Roman Britain was the part of the island of Great Britain controlled by the Roman Empire from AD 43 until ca. AD 410.The Romans referred to the imperial province as Britannia, which eventually comprised all of the island of Great Britain south of the fluid frontier with Caledonia...

 and Gaul
Gaul
Gaul was a region of Western Europe during the Iron Age and Roman era, encompassing present day France, Luxembourg and Belgium, most of Switzerland, the western part of Northern Italy, as well as the parts of the Netherlands and Germany on the left bank of the Rhine. The Gauls were the speakers of...

. Stilicho persuaded the Roman Senate
Roman Senate
The Senate of the Roman Republic was a political institution in the ancient Roman Republic, however, it was not an elected body, but one whose members were appointed by the consuls, and later by the censors. After a magistrate served his term in office, it usually was followed with automatic...

 to approve a gold payment to Alaric (who again was threatening to invade Italy since Stilicho had been unable to provide economic and military support in 406/407 as promised) since he wanted to send the Goths to Gaul as foederati
Foederati
Foederatus is a Latin term whose definition and usage drifted in the time between the early Roman Republic and the end of the Western Roman Empire...

. His unsuccessful attempts to deal with usurper Constantine III, rumors that he had earlier planned the assassination of Rufinus
Rufinus (Byzantine official)
Flavius Rufinus was a 4th century Eastern Roman Empire statesman of Gaulish extraction who served as Praetorian prefect of the East for the emperor Theodosius I, as well as his son Arcadius, under whom Rufinus was the actual power behind the throne.He was the subject of the verse invective In...

 and that he planned to place his son on the Byzantine throne following the death of Emperor Arcadius
Arcadius
Arcadius was the Byzantine Emperor from 395 to his death. He was the eldest son of Theodosius I and his first wife Aelia Flaccilla, and brother of the Western Emperor Honorius...

 in 408 caused a revolt. The Roman army at Ticinum
Ticinum
Ticinum was an ancient city of Gallia Transpadana, founded on the banks of the river of the same name a little way above its confluence with the Padus ....

 mutinied on August 13, killing at least seven senior imperial officers (Zosimus
Zosimus
Zosimus was a Byzantine historian, who lived in Constantinople during the reign of the Byzantine Emperor Anastasius I . According to Photius, he was a comes, and held the office of "advocate" of the imperial treasury.- Historia Nova :...

 5.32). This was followed by events which John Matthews observed "have every appearance of a thoroughly co-ordinated coup d'état
Coup d'état
A coup d'état state, literally: strike/blow of state)—also known as a coup, putsch, and overthrow—is the sudden, extrajudicial deposition of a government, usually by a small group of the existing state establishment—typically the military—to replace the deposed government with another body; either...

 organized by Stilicho's political opponents." Stilicho retired to Ravenna, where he was taken into captivity. Although it was within his ability to contest the charges , Stilicho did not resist, either because of loyalty to Rome or for fear of the consequences to the already precarious state of the Western Empire. He was decapitated on August 22, 408. His son Eucherius was murdered in Rome shortly afterwards.

Aftermath


In the disturbances which followed the downfall and execution of Stilicho, the wives and children of barbarian foederati
Foederati
Foederatus is a Latin term whose definition and usage drifted in the time between the early Roman Republic and the end of the Western Roman Empire...

throughout Italy were slain by the local Romans. The natural consequence was that these men (estimates describe their numbers as perhaps 30,000 strong) flocked to the protection of Alaric, clamoring to be led against their cowardly enemies. The Visigothic warlord accordingly crossed the Julian Alps and began a campaign through the heart of Italy. By September 408, the barbarians stood before the walls of Rome.

Without a strong general like Stilicho to control the by-now mostly barbarian army, Honorius could do little to break the siege, and adopted a passive strategy trying to wait out Alaric, hoping to regather his forces to defeat the Visigoths in the meantime. What followed was two years of political and military manoeuvering, Alaric, king of the Goths, attempting to secure a permanent peace treaty and rights to settle within Roman territory. He besieged Rome three times without attacking while the Roman Italian Army watched helplessly, but it was not until the deal had fallen through a fourth time that he attacked and sacked the city in August 410. The removal of Stilicho was the main catalyst leading to this monumental event, the first barbarian capture of the city in nearly eight centuries and a presaging of the final collapse of the imperial west
Western Roman Empire
The Western Roman Empire was the western half of the Roman Empire after its division by Diocletian in 285; the other half of the Roman Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire, commonly referred to today as the Byzantine Empire....

.

Fictional treatments


Stilicho has appeared in a number of fictional works, both as protagonist and as antagonist.
  • Stilicho is the main protagonist in the 1901 novel Stilicho by Felix Dahn
    Felix Dahn
    Felix Ludwig Julius Dahn was a German lawyer, author and historian.-Biography:Julius Sophus Felix Dahn was born in Hamburg as the oldest son of Friedrich and Constanze Dahn who were notable actors at the city's theatre. The family had both German and French roots...

     (a part of the Kleine Romane aus der Völkerwanderung series), where he is portrayed as a loyal and honest general.
  • Stilicho makes a brief but significant appearance in Keith Robert's novel The Boat of Fate (1971)
  • In the early novels of Jack Whyte
    Jack Whyte
    Jack Whyte is a Scottish-Canadian novelist of historical fiction. Born and raised in Scotland, Whyte has been living in Canada since 1967. He resides in Kelowna, British Columbia....

    's Arthurian series, he had a notable connection to the Britannicus family, whom Whyte ties to the legends of Merlin, Arthur, and Camelot.
  • In the first of William Napier's Attila trilogy (2005). He is killed on the orders of Princess Galla Placida, who suspects him of plotting with young Attila, their royal hostage.
  • In Wallace Breem
    Wallace Breem
    Wallace Breem was a British librarian and author. He was the Librarian and Keeper of Manuscripts of the Inner Temple Law Library, and wrote historical novels, including Eagle in the Snow ....

    's novel Eagle in the Snow
    Eagle in the Snow
    Eagle in the Snow is a historical fiction novel. Written in 1970 by Wallace Breem, the novel is set in Britannia and Germania in the late 4th and early 5th century, and centres on the Roman general Paulinus Gaius Maximus, a Mithraic in an age of Christianization...

    as an ancillary character.
  • In Invasio Barbarorum
    Rome: Total War: Barbarian Invasion
    Barbarian Invasion is the first expansion for the personal computer game Rome: Total War which takes the action forward to the period of the decline of the Western Roman Empire. The Rome Total War Gold Edition includes both the original game as well as the Barbarian Invasion expansion pack. The...

    , a modification of the strategy game Rome: Total War
    Rome: Total War
    Rome: Total War is a PC strategy game developed by The Creative Assembly and released on by Activision...

    , Stilicho is a western Roman general.
  • In the 2000 TV mini-series Attila, Powers Boothe
    Powers Boothe
    Powers Allen Boothe is an American television and film actor. Some of his most notable roles include his Emmy-winning 1980 portrayal of Jim Jones and his turn as Cy Tolliver on Deadwood, as well as Vice-President Noah Daniels on 24....

    , who plays another historical figure, Aetius
    Flavius Aëtius
    Flavius Aëtius , dux et patricius, was a Roman general of the closing period of the Western Roman Empire. He was an able military commander and the most influential man in the Western Roman Empire for two decades . He managed policy in regard to the attacks of barbarian peoples pressing on the Empire...

    , takes on some of Stilicho's story.

Sources


Besides the relevant legal records in the Codex Theodosianus
Codex Theodosianus
The Codex Theodosianus was a compilation of the laws of the Roman Empire under the Christian emperors since 312. A commission was established by Theodosius II in 429 and the compilation was published in the eastern half of the Roman Empire in 438...

, the major primary source for the events of Stilicho's reign, or at least events prior to 404, are the panegyric
Panegyric
A panegyric is a formal public speech, or written verse, delivered in high praise of a person or thing, a generally highly studied and discriminating eulogy, not expected to be critical. It is derived from the Greek πανηγυρικός meaning "a speech fit for a general assembly"...

s addressed to him by the poet Claudian
Claudian
Claudian was a Roman poet, who worked for Emperor Honorius and the latter's general Stilicho.A Greek-speaking citizen of Alexandria and probably not a Christian convert, Claudian arrived in Rome before 395. He made his mark with a eulogy of his two young patrons, Probinus and Olybrius, thereby...

. For events after 404, Zosimus
Zosimus
Zosimus was a Byzantine historian, who lived in Constantinople during the reign of the Byzantine Emperor Anastasius I . According to Photius, he was a comes, and held the office of "advocate" of the imperial treasury.- Historia Nova :...

 is a main source, although as a Byzantine, he felt a strong distaste for Stilicho. Stilicho also maintained correspondence with his friend, the renowned pagan senator Symmachus
Quintus Aurelius Symmachus
Quintus Aurelius Symmachus was a Roman statesman, orator, and man of letters. He held the offices of governor of Africa in 373, urban prefect of Rome in 384 and 385, and consul in 391...

.

See also


  • Odoacer
    Odoacer
    Flavius Odoacer , also known as Flavius Odovacer, was the first King of Italy. His reign is commonly seen as marking the end of the Western Roman Empire. Though the real power in Italy was in his hands, he represented himself as the client of Julius Nepos and, after Nepos' death in 480, of the...

  • Ricimer
    Ricimer
    Flavius Ricimer was a Germanic general who achieved effective control of the remaining parts of the Western Roman Empire, during the middle of the 5th century...

  • Arbogast
    Arbogast
    Arbogast is a Germanic name composed of arbi ‘inheritance’ + gast ‘stranger’.Arbogast may refer to:* Arbogast , a Frankish general in the late Roman Empire* Saint Arbogast, an Irish saint...

  • Gainas
    Gainas
    Gainas was an ambitious Gothic leader who served the Eastern Roman Empire as Magister Militum during the reigns of Theodosius I and Arcadius....

  • Fravitta
    Fravitta
    Flavius Fravitta was a chieftain of the Visigoths, who entered in the Eastern Roman army, rising to its highest ranks.- Biography :Fravitta was a member of the Visigoth aristocracy...


External links

  • Claudian at LacusCurtius (A collection of Claudian's works in both Latin and English, including his panegyrics for Stilicho.)

Further reading

  • Bury, J.B. History of the Later Roman Empire.
  • Claudian. "De Bello Gildonico"
  • Claudian. "De Consulatu Stilichonis"
  • Claudian. "In Eutropium"
  • Claudian. "In Rufinum"
  • Ferrill, Arther. The Fall of the Roman Empire: The Military Explanation.
  • Gibbon, Edward. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.
  • Hodgkin, Thomas. The Barbarian Invasions of the Roman Empire. Vol. 1, the Visigothic Invasion. See Chapters XIII - XVI.
  • Mazzarino, Santo. Stilicone: La crisi imperiale dopo Teodosio. Rome. 1942.
  • Zosimus. Historia Nova.