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Trajan’s dream

This post is also available in: Polish (polski)

Statue of Trajan in Londinium
Statue of Trajan in Londinium

Trajan is considered one of the best Roman emperors in history. During his reign, the Roman Empire reached its military and territorial peak. What distinguished Trajan was the fact that he greatly respected the Senate, what after years of the Julio-Claudian dynasty, was not something obvious.

Cassius Dio told us an interesting story related to Trajan.

Trajan, before he became emperor, had had a dream of the following nature. He thought that an old man in a purple-bordered toga and vesture and with a crown upon his head, as the senate is represented in pictures, impressed a seal upon him with a finger ring, first on the left side of his neck and then on the right.

The day Trajan was declared emperor, the first thing he did was send a letter to the Senate saying that he would not kill or deprive any senator of his rights. His rule was reasonable and in harmony with the Senate.

  • Cassius Dio, Roman history, LXVIII.5

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