Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maximianus Herculius was born in 250 and like many rulers began his career in the army. He was fighting along side Diocletianus when the later rose to power. In 285 Diocletianus was named Caesar and ruler of the western empire, the following year he rose to share equal power when he became Augustus. In 293 when the power was divided into quarters, Constantius Chlorus was chosen as his own Caesar.
During his reign he had several military successes which included thwarting Carausius (with the help of his Caesar Constantius) who had declared himself emperor in Britain and also succeeded in strengthening Africa’s defences.
In 305 Diocletianus forced Maximian to retire alongside him in accordance with an oath he had taken at the beginning of his rule. Galerius and Constantius became the new emperors at this point and they nominated Flavius Valerius Severus and Maximinus Daia as their Caesars.
The career of Maximian did not end here though. Upon the death of Constantius, Maximians son Maxentius nominated himself of emperor over the western empire and brought his father back to power by nominating him Augustus. Maximian was once again successful in several battles and to get Constantius’s son Constantine on his side, had Constantine marry his daughter.
In 308 Maximian tried to usurp his own son but was beaten and took refuge with Constantine in Gaul. His death came about when his plot against Constantine was discovered and he was assassinated.
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