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Valentinian II
Augustus (Western Roman Empire)  AD 375 - 392

Flavius Valentinianus (AD 371 - 392):
Son of Valentinian I and Justina;
Brother of Galla (wife of Theodosius I);
Half-brother of Gratian;
Nephew of Valens;
Brother-in-law Theodosius I;
Uncle of Galla Placidia.

AD 375 - 383 - co-Augustus with Gratian
AD 383 - 392 - Sole reign
Paralel ruleres of the Eastern Roman Empire:
Valens (AD 364 - 378)
Theodosius I (AD 379 - 395)
Arcadius (AD 383 - 408)

Valentinian II bore the same name as his father and became emperor upon the latter's death of stroke in 375. He was only four year old and his accession was the decision of two of Valentinian's top military officers, the German Flavius Merobaudes, and the commander in chief on the Danube, Flavius Equitius. Gratian accepted the nomination and allotted him, at least theoretically, Italy, Africa, and western Illyricum. Valentinian II was still much too young to play an active part in the affairs of empire when Valens was killed by the Visigoths in 378 and replaced by Theodosius, and when his half-brother Gratian was eliminated by Magnus Maximus in 382. In 384 he was caught in the debate between Symmachus and Ambrose about the future of paganism, the last public stand of the pagan lobby in the West. In 387, however, he fled before Maximus to Theodosius's court. Theodosius crushed Maximus and restored Valentinian to power, but as he stayed in Italy himself until 391, there was very little for the young emperor and his advisors to do. In any event, Valentinian's actions were directed by his much liked Frankish Master of Soldiers, Arbogast, who held this post since 388. It appears that by 392 Arbogast's power became too much for the growing Valentinian, and he attempted to dismiss him. Shortly thereafter, in May 392, he was found death within his palace at Vienna in southern Gaul. Rumor had it that Arbogast eliminated him. He never reached the maturity that would allow him to enjoy independent political action.

Mints: Alexandria, Antioch, Aquileia, Arelate, Constantinopolis, Cyzicus, Heraclea, Lugdunum, Mediolanum, Nicomedia, Rome, Sirmium, Siscia, Thessalonica, Treveri.

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