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Commodus III


Pronunciation:  KOM-oh-duhs

Occurrences:  20

First Reference:  3rd Endowment 24:4


Now the Emperor of Rome was a vengeful man, whose name was Commodus III; being himself a man of spite and bitter disposition; and he desired a bitter retribution against Drakonia, whereby he might gloat in some victory against it.



See:  First Power, First Track, Emperor, Polinus I, Rome


Summary:  Emperor of Rome during the lifetime of Kronus Maximillius, Commodus Lucius Marius inherited the throne when his father, Polinus I, unexpectedly died falling off his horse during a hunting trip (AZC — Commodus III). Commodus’ reign was plagued by failure. His attempt to take Antarctica from Drakonia was an utter disaster, leading to a counter-offensive from Drakonia which cost the Roman Empire nearly half of its wealth (3:24:4 — 3:25:22).


Commodus tried to make up for the loss by heavily taxing the rich and powerful, which didn’t bode well for his already tainted reputation (3:25:42). Hoping to quell the rage of the Roman Senate, Commodus made efforts to capture Kronus (Drakonia’s military genius) and offer him to the Senate as a ransom for his own life (3:25:43-45). After the island of Petragia was taken from Rome by Drakonia, the Roman Senate had Commodus assassinated, replacing him with Vespasian IV (3:28:46-48).



Azrael’s Commentary — Commodus III


Born Commodus Lucius Marius, the eldest son of the Emperor Polinus I, Commodus was one of the very few emperors who had never commanded a legion of Rome in battle. Commodus was not an imposing figure. He was short, fat and liked to pamper himself. From his youth he whined and complained incessantly, and his father literally loathed the very sight of him. It was believed by many in the palace, that if the Emperor had not died so suddenly and unexpectedly he would have had his son strangled. However, on a hunting trip the Emperor, Polinus I fell from his horse and broke his neck. With the tragedy, the senate rushed to have Commodus, at the age of nineteen, crowned Emperor of Rome. Here at last was an opportunity for the senate to replace a strong emperor with a weak one.

In Commodus, the senate saw a youth who could be maneuvered and manipulated into doing the senate’s bidding. By every standard, Commodus was weak, lazy and dull-witted. He relied heavily upon his senatorial advisors to run the day-to-day affairs of the empire. Commodus III was the last of the Marian line to reign as Emperor. And although he reigned for thirty years, he was almost always the puppet of the most powerful senators of the empire.

During his troubled reign as Emperor, Commodus tried several times to assert some independence from his senatorial watch dogs, but on all but one occasion he was always brought back into line through threats of assassination. Finally, at the age of thirty-eight, Commodus broke away from senatorial control by massacring a good portion of the senate. Those who remained alive now began to fear the new and more assertive Commodus. However, this fear slowly turned to rage, for as an emperor left to his own devices, Commodus was a fool and totally incompetent to rule an empire. The loss of up to one half of Rome’s accumulated wealth in South Africa, his heavy taxation of the wealthy to cover up the loss and finally the loss of Petragia became too much. The new senate realized that if the Roman Empire was to continue, then Commodus had to die. After his assassination, he was replaced by the first of a new line of emperors from the Vencetti clan.



Azrael’s Commentary — Sulla Cornellius (excerpt)


[...] When the Roman Emperor Commodus expressed his desire that Antarctica be taken away from Drakonia and returned to Roman control, Sulla made every effort to secure the command for himself. And although the Emperor made sure that Sulla got the command, the ill-fated expedition failed to achieve its primary objective...


The severe measures taken against Sulla Cornellius by the Emperor and the senate was engineered solely by Commodus III and was meant to save the Emperor from the senate itself.[...]





Refer to: 3rd Endowment, chapters 24-28



Now the Emperor of Rome was a vengeful man, whose name was Commodus III; being himself a man of spite and bitter disposition; and he desired a bitter retribution against Drakonia, whereby he might gloat in some victory against it.

For in years past had Drakonia captured through war, the continent of Antarctica, to steal it away from Rome; to keep in firm possession the wealth of all its many resources; drawing from the frozen land and the oceans round about a great many riches.

Thus, for eighty years did the Empire of Rome seek some bitter revenge for so great a loss, causing that Commodus III should send into the lands of South Africa, five full divisions of the Roman Army, having in each division some ten legions; and unto this did he also add six armored battalions, fiercely armed.

And over so great an army did Commodus III place in command, a general of great renown, even the man Sulla Cornellius; and he made haste the great invasion, drawing into every port a great many naval ships and barges.

3rd Endowment 24:4-7