Publius Aelius Hadrianus was born in Rome in 76 CE. He owed his later position to his uncle (Trajan), who adopted him after his father’s death. In this way, he gave him the opportunity to gain experience and the ability to exercise power. Thanks to this he became the emperor in 117 CE. The ruling of Hadrian is usually associated with cultural flourishing and maintaining peace in the state.
Hadrian led to numerous reforms in ancient Rome. He reformed, among others administration and codified the law. A set of rights was created then called edictum porpetuum (a set of previously applicable laws). Emperor Hadrian is also associated with the conduct of defense policy and the strengthening of the state. It was caused by numerous border fortifications – e.g. the so-called Hadrian’s Wall, or limestone reinforcements in Britain. During his time, buildings with other functions were also built. These were, for example, tombs and villas – buildings essential for Roman culture. He also rebuilt the ruined pantheon. He was a patron of art. He devoted special attention to Greek culture, which led to the spread of Hellenic patterns.
The ruler was also known for his love relationship with 30 years younger Antinous – a Greek youth. He often accompanied the emperor on his travels. However, the he drowned in the Nile; after that the emperor included him in the cult – he made deification.
Emperor Hadrian died without offspring in 138 CE. Previously, however, he adopted Titus Aurelius Antoninus, who became his successor as Antoninus Pius.