By Jacob Burckhardt
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Additional info for Age of Constantine the Great
The elder Aurelius Victor would explam this development by the fact that DlOcletlan was an upstart, and as such naturally insatiable of outward show. But in that case it is strange that none of the great soldier Emperors of the third century, VIrtually all of whom rose to the throne from humble origins, preceded him in this affectation. For example, we see the mIghty Aurelian associating quite sunply with his old friends, whose wants, indeed, he supplied so that they could no longer be called needy.
Instead of 52 DIOCLETIAN : ADOPTIONS AND REIGN the simple purple with which almost all his predecessors (exceptmg only the mad Emperors) had been content, DIOdetian wore, after 293, silk and gold-embroidered garments, and even his shoes were decorated with precious stones and pearls; upon rus head he wore a diadem, a white band set with pearls. Naturally, these were the official vestments in which he ap,peared only on ceremonial occasions. On his flying journeys and campaIgns he and his colleague Maximian adopted a dif· ferent style, as did also the Caesars, who were quick to fol.
For example, we see the mIghty Aurelian associating quite sunply with his old friends, whose wants, indeed, he supplied so that they could no longer be called needy. Silken clothes were too dear for 1um, and he wished to eliminate the use of gold for ornamentmg buildmgs and gannents. He was willing enough to pennit others costly baubles, wlnch might be melted down again, but he denied them to himself. His servants he dressed no more magnificently than he had done before he became Emperor. s of Sallust, and in its spacious courts he might be seen daily exercising himself and putting his horses through thelI paces.
Age of Constantine the Great by Jacob Burckhardt