46th Emperor of the Roman Empire
Reign 276
Predecessor Tacitus
Successor Probus
Died 276
Tarsus, Cilicia[1]
Full name
Marcus Annius Florianus (from birth to accession);
Caesar Marcus Annius Florianus Augustus (as emperor)

Florianus (Latin: Marcus Annius Florianus Augustus;[2] died 276), also known as Florian, was Roman Emperor for a few months in 276.


Hercules crowning Florianus.[3]

Florian was reported be a maternal half-brother to the Emperor Marcus Claudius Tacitus.[4] Appointed Praetorian Prefect in Tacitus's army in his campaign against the Goths,[2] according to the available sources, he was chosen by the army in the West to succeed Tacitus in 276, without the Roman Senate consensus.[5] However he minted coins bearing the "SC" legend, thus showing some bonds to the Senate.[6]

Probus' rebellion

Florian was fighting the Heruli when the army in the East elected Probus.[7] Florian had the support of Italia, Gaul, Hispania, Britain, Africa, and Mauretania.[5] The two rival emperors met in battle in Cilicia; Florianus had the larger army, but Probus was a more experienced general and avoided a direct clash.[8] Florian's western army was not accustomed to the hot, dry eastern climate,[9] and Probus likely secured a small victory. Florian was assassinated by his own troops near Tarsus once their confidence was lost.[6] He died in September 276, having been emperor for only eighty-eight days.[1]

A family of the Brandenburg nobility called von Blumenthal claimed descent from Florianus in a fanciful legend which says that after his death his sons fled over the Alps and introduced viticulture to the north Germans.


Primary sources

Secondary sources


  1. 1 2 Canduci, pg. 101
  2. 1 2 Jones, pg. 367
  3. This coin celebrates the AETERNITAS AVG, the eternal life of the emperor. However, Florianus ruled only eighty-eight days.
  4. Historia Augusta, Vita Taciti, 17:4
  5. 1 2 Southern, pg. 127
  6. 1 2 3 "Roman Emperors - DIR Florian". roman-emperors.org.
  7. Historia Augusta, Vita Probi, 10:1
  8. Gibbon, Ch. 12
  9. Southern, pg. 128
  10. "Roman Emperors - DIR Epitome of Sextus Aurelius Victor". roman-emperors.org.
  11. "Historia Augusta • Life of the Emperor Tacitus". uchicago.edu.
  12. "Eutropius: Abridgement of Roman History, Book 9". forumromanum.org.
  13. "Zonaras: Alexander Severus to Diocletian: 222-284". ancientsites.com.
  14. "Zosimus, New History. London: Green and Chaplin (1814). Book 1.". tertullian.org.

Media related to Florianus at Wikimedia Commons

Regnal titles
Preceded by
Marcus Claudius Tacitus
Roman Emperor
Succeeded by
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