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Ammianus Marcellinus composed a history of the Roman empire from 96 AD to 378 AD, focusing on the mid-fourth century during which he served in the army. His experience as a soldier during this period provides crucial realia of warfare, while his knowledge of literature, especially the genre of historiography, enabled him to imbue his narrative with literary flair. This book explores the tension between Ammianus’ roles as soldier and author, examining how his military experience affected his history, and conversely how his knowledge of literature affected his descriptions of the Roman army.
In: Ammianus Marcellinus From Soldier to Author


Rufinus’ account of Pliny the Younger’s correspondence with Trajan regarding the treatment of Christians (Ep. 10.96–7) differs from Eusebius’ in three important ways: linking persecution to internal divisions within the Church; accentuating Pliny’s compassion for the Christian dead; and removing his skepticism regarding the Christian worship of a divine Christ. This article analyses these changes in light of Rufinus’ early fifth century context, especially the development of the cult of martyrs in northern Italy, and the Theodosian use of Trajan in imperial representations.

Open Access
In: Vigiliae Christianae


This article analyses how Rufinus alters and then extends Eusebius’ church history to draw a narrative continuum of pagan idolatry, tyranny and blood sacrifice across the fourth century. It begins with a taxonomy that illustrates the various ways that Rufinus’ text differs from Eusebius’ and then analyses how Rufinus enhances the levels of cruelty and bloody carnage in his Eusebian source, especially with regards to the tyrannical behaviour of the pagan emperors Maximinus, Maxentius, and Licinius. Lastly, it turns to Rufinus’ account of Eugenius’ uprising and the destruction of the temple of Serapis and shows how Rufinus’ repeated criticism of pagan imperial persecution acts to justify Theodosius’ actions.

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In: Vigiliae Christianae