Gratianus in the midst of his successes in war and wise and prudent government ended his life by conspiracy. 861 He left no sons to inherit the empire, and a brother of the same name as their father, Valentinianus, 862 who was quite a youth. So Maximus, 863 in contempt of the youth of Valentinianus, seized the throne of the West.
Gratianus made himself unpopular (i) by his excessive addiction to sport, playing the Commodus in the “Vivaria,” when not even a Marcus Aurelius could have answered all the calls of the Empire. (Amm. xxxi. x. 19) and (ii) by affecting the society and customs of barbarians (Aur. Vict. xlvii. 6). The troops in Britain rose against him, gathered aid in the Low Countries, and defeated him near Paris. He fled to Lyons, where he was treacherously assassinated Aug. 25, 383. He was only twenty-four. (Soc. v. 11.)141:862 141:863
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