Trajan's Column Character Analysis

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Trajan’s Column, a Narration of the Military Might of Rome
Trajan was the emperor of Rome from 98 to 117 AD. Trajan’s rule lead Rome to the largest military expansion in their history, by the time of his death, Rome had grown to a large size than any other emperor had maintained before (Norris). Before his rise to emperor, he had to be nominated as consul, which required the person to be of important status or made in society, and have the backing and trust from the senate (Robertson). He was declared by the Roman Senate ‘optimus princeps,’ the Latin words for ‘the best ruler’ and led the Romans on successful military campaigns throughout his lifetime. His rise through the orders of Roman society and successful reign as emperor are depicted
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He is overlooking the Roman military machine, keeping dutiful watch over soldiers, and ensuring tasks and battles are being carried out from afar. “In battles Trajan stands back from the action, often receiving prisoners or being presented with severed heads, but never directly participating. The emperor is depicted in postures and manners that make in easily distinguishable from the rest of the soldiers and scenery. “The emperor [Trajan] is credit with having all the ideal qualities of generalship which were praised in senatorial literature. He addresses and inspires the troops, in far-flung conquests new peoples are met with and overcome, and major field-works are under-taken… He is acclaimed by the army and watches over the troops in a paternal fashion (Coulston, 37).” He was depicted as an emperor with every quality necessary and expected of a Roman general of the era, victorious and …show more content…
Upon the death of Trajan his life and campaigns were honoured with this monument that demonstrated how the Romans honoured their leaders, idolizing them and creating their stories eternal in the culture. Trajan’s column sent the message that the Roman military was massive and powerful, and able to create legendary role-models. To become a Roman emperor was difficult for any man, considering they had to rise through the social hierarchy and become a successful consul in the first place. Although many Roman emperors were very successful, Trajan’s military experience and proven success in combat exalted his status in Roman history as the most successful military general to expand the Roman empire. The column honoured his life, and was also the place of his burial, showcasing the successful archetype of a Roman general towering over the Roman populous. During Trajan’s reign the Roman empire was at the height of its might, his column was the symbolic representation of this. Trajan was celebrated by the people of Rome, upon his return from his successful campaigns in Dacia, he declared over one hundred days of celebrations that indulged in the resources exploited from the defeated Dacians (Becker). Under Trajan, the Roman military decimated opponents, proved their might, and then showcased Trajan’s column to

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