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Galerus Valerius Maximinus, Roman emperor from AD 308 to 314, was originally an Illyrian shepherd named Daia.

He rose to high distinction after he had joined the army, and in 305 he was raised by his uncle, Galerius, to the rank of Caesar, with the government of Syria and Egypt.

In 308, after the elevation of Licinius, he insisted on receiving the title of Augustus; on the death of Galerius, in 311, he succeeded to the supreme command of the provinces of Asia, and when Licinius and Constantine began to make common cause with one another Maximinus entered into a secret alliance with the usurper Maxentius, who controlled Italy. He came to an open rupture with Licinius in 313, sustained a crushing defeat in the neighbourhood of Heraclea Pontica on the April 30, and fled, first to Nicomedia and afterwards to Tarsus, where he died in August following. His death was variously ascribed "to despair, to poison, and to the divine justice."

Maximinus has a bad name in Christian annals, as having renewed persecution after the publication of the toleration edict of Galerius, but it is probable that he has been judged too harshly.

This entry was originally from the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.

Preceded by:
Galerius (305 - 311)
Roman emperors
Followed by:
Licinius (311 - 324)

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