Abstract

Abstract:

The article is dedicated to a famous scandal that happened around the mid of the 5th century at the court of the Western Roman emperor Valentinian III (425–455). His sister, the princess Honoria, who had been forced to dedicate herself to virginity for political and dynastic reasons, was caught in an illegitimate love affair with one of her staff members, the property manager (procurator) Eugenius. The emperor responded with harsh measures, but he was not able to prevent the scandal from become widely known and even involving Attila, the ruler of the Huns, who was contacted by Honoria and exploited her plea for help to his own political advantage. The aim of the article is to analyze the so-called "Honoria-affair," focusing on the significant fact that this scandal is broadly represented only in sources from the Greek East, whereas policy makers in the West exploited it mainly symbolically. Considering the importance of the "Honoria-affair" within Eastern and Western Roman Hunnic policy, the author demonstrates how it helps us assess the political objectives of both Roman courts during the fifth century and the role it played in the processes of communication between the Eastern and Western halves of an increasingly divergent Roman Empire.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1942-1273
Print ISSN
1939-6716
Pages
pp. 42-61
Launched on MUSE
2017-09-22
Open Access
No
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