biographical name


Elagabalus, marble portrait bust, c. 221.—© Araldo de Luca/Corbis

(born AD 203, Emesa, Syria—died March 11, 222, Rome) Roman emperor (218–222) notable for his eccentric behaviour. Passed off as Caracalla's illegitimate son, he became emperor with the support of the army. He identified himself with the Syrian god Baal and imposed Baal worship on the empire. His execution of dissidents, promotion of favourites, and homosexual orgies outraged the Romans. After he named his cousin Alexander heir and then changed his mind, the Praetorian Guards mutinied, murdered him, and made Alexander emperor.

Variants of ELAGABALUS

Elagabalus or Heliogabalus officially Caesar Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus orig. Varius Avitus Bassianus

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