AMMIANUS MARCELLINUS AND THE NISIBENE HANDOVER OF A.D. 363

in Late Antique Archaeology
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This article focuses on the Roman Emperor Jovian’s handover of Nisibis to the Persian King Shapur II in A.D. 363. This event is presented by an eyewitness, Ammianus Marcellinus, as a definitive moment in the history of the Roman State: when the empire’s endurance diverges substantially from her age-old pact with Iustitia (which he defines as the presiding causative deity) towards deeds which contravene the historian’s ideal of Rome and the responsibility of her agents to further her interests. Alongside this wider interpretation, the article considers the trauma of the handover for citizens of the strategically important city of Nisibis, and the contrasting portrait painted by Ephrem.

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