Flavius Afranius Syagrius, Consul 382 (c.350 - 399) MP

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Birthplace: Lyon, Rhône-Alpes, France
Death: Died in Lyon, Rhône-Alpes, France
Occupation: Notarius (369), Magister Memoriae (379), Proconsul of Africa (379-380), Praefectus Urbis Romae (381), Praetorian Prefect of Italy (380-382), Consul of Rome (382), Gallo-Roman Senator, Poet, Gallo-Roman Consul, Senator
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About Flavius Afranius Syagrius, Consul 382

Flavius Afranius Syagrius (fl. 369-382) was a Roman politician and administrator. He was a Roman senator. In the same years Afranius lived, another Syagrius is attested (he was consul in 381). It is not always possible to distinguish the careers of the two men. The consul of 381 was a friend and correspondent of Symmachus, the noted orator and vigorous defender of the pagan religion. The consul of 382 was probably the one who was the maternal grandfather of Tonantius Ferreolus.

In 369 he is attested as notarius, when the Roman Emperor Valentinian I removed him from office after a failed military operation. Thereafter, Afranius dedicated himself to private life. He continued his career under Emperor Gratian, possibly because of his friendship with the poet Ausonius. Afranius was Magister Memoriae in 379, when some Theodorus succeeded him. That same year he became Proconsul Africae. Between 18 June 380 and the Spring of 382 he is attested as Praefectus Praetorio Italiae. In 381 he was also Praefectus Urbis Romae. In 382 he was chosen Consul by Emperor Gratian, serving with Flavius Claudius Antonius. The office of consul had great prestige and was eagerly sought by Roman citizens. In the second half of the 4th century it was usually attained as the culmination of a distinguished career, but it had become largely honorary, with minimal political responsibilities. He might also have been the Syagrius who was Praefectus Praetorio Italiae in 382.

He was a poet, and he might have been the Syagrius who was a pupil and friend of the poet Ausonius. Ausonius was the head of a famous school at Bordeaux, and was selected by emperor Valentinian as tutor for his son (the future emperor) Gratian. A number of his relatives and friends held various high imperial offices (Van Dam 1985, p. 304).

He was buried in Lyon, France, then Lugdunum, beneath an imposing monument at the city gate, "not quite a full bowshot" from the church, and a statue of him was erected in the city.

Family

He was the father of Syagria, the mother of Tonantius Ferreolus. He was also most likely the ancestor of Afranius Aegidius and his son Afranius Syagrius, as well as a relative of his predecessor Flavius Syagrius, Consul in 381, who was a friend and correspondent of Symmachus, the noted orator and vigorous defender of the pagan religion.

Ancestry

His ancestry is conjectural. He has long been a subject of debate for those attempting to trace the Carolingian dynasty of France, as well as their numerous descendants, from antiquity.

Syagrius was of paternal Roman descent, as evidenced by the fact he was a Senator. His name follows the traditional Roman trianomina format of praenomen, nomen and cognomen, where the nomen is the surname. His cognomen, Syagrius, means wild boar (Moriarty 1956). His praenomen, Flavius, became a popular given name from the time of the Flavian dynasty, but was also used as a courtesy title (Bagnall, et al. 1987, pp. 36 ff.).

Roman naming customs of the time suggest that his father was a man named Afranius and his mother probably a woman named Syagria. Therefore, he might have been a great grandson of Afranius Hannibalianus and of Postumius Syagrius. This reconstruction would make him a brother of Aelia Flavia Flaccilla, the first wife of Emperor Theodosius the Great.

Sources

  • David Stone Potter, The Roman Empire at Bay: Ad 180-395, Routledge, 2004, ISBN 0-415-10057-7, pp. 545-546.
  • Christian Settipani, Les Ancêtres de Charlemagne (France: Éditions Christian, 1989).
  • Christian Settipani, "Continuité Gentilice et Continuité Familiale dans les Familles Sénatoriales Romaines l'Époque Imperiale, Mythe et Realité, Addenda I - III" (juillet 2000- octobre 2002) (n.p.: Prosopographica et Genealogica, 2002).
  • Weis, Ancestral Roots (180-1) "GALLO-ROMANS AND ALSATIANS" p.117
  • Wikpedia: English
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Flavius Afranius Syagrius, Consul 382's Timeline

350
350
Lyon, Rhône-Alpes, France
370
370
Age 20
Rome,,,Italy
381
381
Age 31
393
393
Age 43
399
399
Age 49
Lyon, Rhône-Alpes, France
????
Rome, Roma, Lazio, Italy
????
????
Lyon, Rhone, Rhone-Alpes, France