Domitian
Domitian
Roman emperor and persecutor of the Church, son of Vespasian and younger brother and successor of the Emperor Titus; b. 24 Oct., A.D. 51, and reigned from 81 to 96

Catholic Encyclopedia. . 2006.

Domitian
    Domitian
     Catholic_Encyclopedia Domitian
    (TITUS FLAVIUS DOMITIANUS).
    Roman emperor and persecutor of the Church, son of Vespasian and younger brother and successor of the Emperor Titus; b. 24 Oct., A.D. 51, and reigned from 81 to 96. In spite of his private vices he set himself up as a reformer of morals and religion. He was the first of the emperors to deify himself during his lifetime by assuming the title of "Lord and God". After the revolt of Saturninus (93) he organized a series of bloodthirsty proscriptions against all the wealthy and noble families. A conspiracy, in which his wife joined, was formed against him, and he was murdered, 18 Sept., 96.
    When the Acts of Nero's reign were reversed after his death, an exception was made as to the persecution of the Christians (Tertullian, Ad Nat., i, 7). The Jewish revolt brought upon them fresh unpopularity, and the subsequent destruction of the Holy City deprived them of the last shreds of protection afforded them by being confounded with the Jews. Hence Domitian in his attack upon the aristocratic party found little difficulty in condemning such as were Christians. To observe Jewish practices was no longer lawful; to reject the national religion, without being able to plead the excuse of being a Jew, was atheism. On one count or the other, as Jews or as atheists, the Christians were liable to punishment. Among the more famous martyrs in this Second Persecution were Domitian's cousin, Flavius Clemens, the consul, and M' Acilius Glabrio who had also been consul. Flavia Domitilla, the wife of Flavius, was banished to Pandataria. But the persecution was not confined to such noble victims. We read of many others who suffered death or the loss of their goods (Dio Cassius, LXVII, iv). The book of the Apocalypse was written in the midst of this storm, when many of the Christians had already perished and more were to follow them (St. Irenæus, Adv. Hæres., V, xxx). Rome, "the great Babylon", "was drunk with the blood of the saints and with the blood of the martyrs of Jesus" (Apoc., xvii, 5, 6; ii, 10, 13; vi, 11; xiii, 15; xx, 4). It would seem that participation in the feasts held in honour of the divinity of the tyrant was made the test for the Christians of the East. Those who did not adore the "image of the beast" were slain. The writer joins to his sharp denunciation of the persecutors' words of encouragement for the faithful by foretelling the downfall of the great harlot "who made drunk the earth with the wine of her whoredom", and steeped her robe in their blood. St. Clement's Epistle to the Corinthians was also writtens about this time; here, while the terrible trials of the Christians are spoken of, we do not find the same denunciations of the persecutors. The Roman Church continued loyal to the empire, and sent up its prayers to God that He would direct the rulers and magistrates in the exercise of the power committed to their hands (Clem., Ep. ad Cor., c. lxi; cf. St. Paul, Rom., xiii, 1; I Pet., ii, 13). Before the end of his reign Domitian ceased to persecute. (See PERSECUTIONS .)
    EUSEBIUS, H. E.., III, xvii sqq. in P.G., XX; IRENÆUS, Adv. Hæreses, V in P.G., VII; ALLARD, Hist. des Persécutions pendant les deux premiers siècles (Paris, 1892); Ten Lectures on the Martyrs (tr. London, 1907); Le Christianisme et l'Empire Romain (Paris, 1898).
    T.B. SCANNELL
    Transcribed by WGKofron With thanks to St. Mary's Church, Akron, Ohio

The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume VIII. — New York: Robert Appleton Company. . 1910.


Catholic encyclopedia.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Domitian — Kapitolinische Museen Titus Flavius Domitianus (* 24. Oktober 51 in Rom; † 18. September 96 in Rom), im Deutschen meist kurz Domitian genannt, war römischer Kaiser von 81 bis 96. Als Nachfolger seines Vaters Vespasian …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Domitian — Domitian,   Titus Flavius Domitianus, römischer Kaiser (81 96), * Rom 24. 10. 51, ✝ ebenda 18. 9. 96; Sohn Kaiser Vespasians und der Flavia Domitilla (✝ vor dem 1. 7. 69). Nach dem Tod seines Bruders Titus zur Regierung gekommen, begann Domitian… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • DOMITIAN° — (Titus Flavius Domitianus), Roman emperor, 81–96 C.E. Son of vespasian and brother of titus , Domitian attempted to establish an absolute monarchy against the senate, and resumed an expansionist policy. A rabid opponent of Oriental cults, he… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • DOMITIAN — Domitian, Domitiano, Domitianus …   Abbreviations in Latin Inscriptions

  • Domitian — [də mish′ən] (L. name Titus Flavius Domitianus Augustus) A.D. 51 96; Rom. emperor (81 96) …   English World dictionary

  • Domitian — For other people named Domitian, see Domitian (disambiguation). Domitian 11th Emperor of the Roman Empire Bust of Domitian, Capitoline Museum, Rome …   Wikipedia

  • Domitian — /deuh mish euhn, ee euhn/, n. (Titus Flavius Domitianus Augustus) A.D. 51 96, Roman emperor 81 96. * * * Latin Caesar Domitianus Augustus orig. Titus Flavius Domitianus born Oct. 24, AD 51 died Sept. 18, 96, Rome Roman emperor (81–96). The son of …   Universalium

  • Domitian — biographical name A.D. 51 96 Titus Flavius Domitianus Roman emperor (81 96) …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Domitian — …   Википедия

  • DOMITIAN —    Roman emperor, son of Vespasian, brother of Titus, whom he succeeded in 81, the last of the twelve Cæsars; exceeded the expectations of every one in the beginning of his reign, as he had given proof of a licentious and sanguinary character… …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”