biographical name

(died AD 260) Roman emperor (253–260). He served as consul under Severus Alexander (r. 222–235). Later a commander on the upper Rhine, he supported the emperor Gallus (r. 251–253) in the conflict with a rival emperor but arrived with his legions too late to save Gallus from death at the hands of his own troops. Elected emperor by his soldiers (253), Valerian renewed the persecution of the Christians and executed Pope Sixtus II in 258. After appointing his son Publius Licinius Gallienus to rule the western part of the empire, he marched east to repel the Persian invasion. At first successful, he was later defeated by the Persian king Shapur I and died in captivity.

Variants of VALERIAN

Valerian Latin Publius Licinius Valerianus

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on Valerian, visit

Seen & Heard

What made you look up Valerian? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.