World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Mauretania Sitifensis

Article Id: WHEBN0007046415
Reproduction Date:

Title: Mauretania Sitifensis  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Valentinian III, Mauretania, List of battles 301–1300, Praeses, Exarchate of Africa, Sétif, Lesbi, Vandalic War
Collection:
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Mauretania Sitifensis

Not to be confused with the modern country of Mauritania.
For the sailing vessel, see RMS Mauretania (disambiguation).
Mauretania
tribal; client state; imperial administration

3rd century BC – 431 AD
533–698

Mauretania Tingitana province (borders in 116 AD).
Capital Julia Caesara
Languages Berber, Latin
Religion Roman paganism, local beliefs
Political structure tribal; client state; imperial administration
King
 -  110-80 BC Bocchus I
 -  23-40 AD Ptolemy of Mauretania
Historical era Classical Antiquity
 -  Established before 200 BC
 -  client state of the Roman Empire 33 BC
 -  Roman province 44 AD
 -  Vandal conquest 430s
 -  Roman reconquest 533
 -  Muslim conquest of the Maghreb 698

Mauretania was part of Ancient Libya during antiquity, situated west of Numidia. It corresponded to the Mediterranean coast of what is today Morocco, western Algeria and Spanish cities of Ceuta and Melilla.

Mauretania was an independent tribal kingdom from about the 3rd century BC. It became a client of the Roman empire in 33 BC, and a full province after the death of Ptolemy of Mauretania in AD 40. Mauretania fell to the Vandal conquest in the 430s, but was reconquered by the Eastern Empire in 533. The province was finally lost to the Muslim conquest of the Maghreb in 698.

Kingdom

Further information: North Africa during Antiquity

Mauretania existed as a tribal kingdom of the Mauri people on the Mediterranean coast of north Africa, from at least the 3rd century BC. The Mediterranean coast of Mauretania had been controlled by Carthage since before the 4th century BC, but the interior was controlled by Berber tribes, who had established themselves in the region by the beginning Iron Age. The earliest recorded mentions of the Mauri are in the context of Phoenician and Carthaginian settlements such as Lixus, Volubilis, Mogador and Chellah.[1]

King Atlas was a legendary king of Mauretania credited with the invention of the celestial globe. The first known historical king of the Mauri is Bagas, who ruled during the Second Punic War. The Mauri were in close contact with Numidia. Bocchus I (fl. 110 BC) was father-in-law to Jugurtha.

Mauretania became a Roman client kingdom of the Roman Empire in 33 BC. The Romans placed Juba II of Numidia as their client-king. When Juba died in 23 AD, his Roman-educated son Ptolemy of Mauretania succeeded him on the throne. Caligula killed Ptolemy in 40. Claudius annexed Mauretania directly as a Roman province in 44, under an imperial (not senatorial) governor.

Not depriving the Mauri of their line of kings would have contributed to preserving loyalty and order, it appears: "The Mauri, indeed, manifestly worship kings, and do not conceal their name by any disguise," Cyprian observed in 247, likely quoting a geographer rather than personal observation, in his brief euhemerist exercise in deflating the gods entitled On the Vanity of Idols.[2] The known kings of Mauretania are:

Name reign notes image
Bagas fl. 225 BC
Bocchus I c. 110 – c. 80s BC
Bocchus II 49 – c. 33 BC co-ruler with Bogud
Bogud 49 – c. 38 BC co-ruler with Bocchus II
Juba II 25 BC – 23 AD Roman client king
Ptolemy 20 – 40 last king of Mauretania; began reign as co-ruler with Juba II, killed by Caligula

Roman province

In the 1st century Emperor Claudius divided the Roman province of Mauretania into Mauretania Caesariensis and Mauretania Tingitana along the line of the Mulucha (Muluya) River, about 60 km west of modern Oran:


Mauretania gave to the empire one emperor, the equestrian Macrinus, who seized power after the assassination of Caracalla in 217 but was himself defeated and executed by Elagabalus the next year.

Since emperor Diocletian's Tetrarchy reform (293), the country was further divided in three provinces, as the small, easternmost region Sitifensis was split off from Mauretania Caesariensis.

The Notitia Dignitatum (circa 400) mentions them still, two being under the authority of the Vicarius of the diocese of Africa:

  • a Dux et praeses provinciae Mauritaniae et Caesariensis, i.e., a Roman governor of the rank of Vir spectabilis, who also holds the high military command of 'duke', as the superior of eight border garrison commanders, each styled Praepositus limitis, named (genitive forms) Columnatensis, Vidensis, Praepositus limitis inferioris (i.e., lower border), Fortensis, Muticitani, Audiensis, Caputcellensis and Augustensis.
  • an (ordinary, civilian) Praeses in the province of Mauretania Sitifensis.

And, under the authority of the Vicarius of the diocese of Hispaniae:

  • a Comes rei militaris of (Mauretania -, but not mentioning that part of the name) Tingitana, also ranking as vir spectabilis, in charge of the following border garrison (Limitanei) commanders: Praefectus alae Herculeae at Tamuco, Tribunus cohortis secundae Hispanorum at Duga, Tribunus cohortis primae Herculeae at Aulucos, Tribunus cohortis primae Ityraeorum at Castrabarensis, another Tribunus cohortis at Sala, Tribunus cohortis Pacatianensis at Pacatiana, Tribunus cohortis tertiae Asturum at Tabernas and Tribunus cohortis Friglensis at (and apparently also from, a rarity) Friglas; and to whom three extraordinary cavalry units are assigned: Equites scutarii seniores, Equites sagittarii seniores and Equites Cordueni,
  • a Praeses (civilian governor) of the same province of Tingitana

Late Antiquity

Further information: Diocese of Africa

Roman-Moorish kingdoms

During the crisis of the 3rd century, parts of Mauretania were re-conquered by Berber tribes. Direct Roman rule became confined to a few coastal cities (such as Septum (Ceuta) in Mauretania Tingitana and Cherchell in Mauretania Caesariensis) by the late 3rd century.[3]

Historical sources about inland areas are sparse, but these were apparently controlled by local Berber rulers who, however, maintained a degree of Roman culture, including the local cities, and usually nominally acknowledged the suzerainity of the Roman Emperors.[4] In an inscription from Altava in western Algeria, one of these rulers, Masuna, described himself as rex gentium Maurorum et Romanorum (king of the Roman and Moorish peoples). Altava was later the capital of another ruler, Garmul or Garmules, who resisted Byzantine rule in Africa but was finally defeated in 578.[5] The Byzantine historian Procopius also mentions another independent ruler, Mastigas, who controlled most of Mauretania Caesariensis in the 530s.

Vandal kingdom

Main article: Vandal kingdom

The Vandals conquered the Roman province beginning in the 420s. The city of Hippo Regius fell to the Vandals in 431 after a prolongued siege, and Carthage also fell in 439. Theodosius II dispatched an expedition to deal with the Vandals in 441, which failed to progress farther than Sicily. The Western Empire under Valentinian III secured peace with the Vandals in 442, confirming their control of Proconsular Africa. For the next 90 years, Africa was firmly under the Vandal control. The Vandals were ousted from Africa in the Vandalic War of 533-534, from which time Mauretania at least nominally became a Roman province once again.

The old provinces of the Roman Diocese of Africa were mostly preserved by the Vandals, but large parts, including almost all of Mauretania Tingitana, much of Mauretania Caesariensis and Mauretania Sitifensis and large parts of the interior of Numidia and Byzacena, had been lost to the inroads of Berber tribes, now collectively called the Mauri (later Moors) as a generic term for "the Berber tribes in the province of Mauretania".

Praetorian prefecture of Africa

In 533, the Roman army under Belisarius defeated the Vandals. In April 534, Justinian published a law concerning the administrative organization of the newly acquired territories. Nevertheless, Justinian restored the old administrative division, but raised the overall governor at Carthage to the supreme administrative rank of praetorian prefect, thereby ending the Diocese of Africa's traditional subordination to the Prefecture of Italy (then still under Ostrogoth rule).

Exarchate of Africa

The emperor Maurice sometime between 585 and 590 created the office of exarch, which combined the supreme civil authority of a praetorian prefect and the military authority of a magister militum, and enjoyed considerable autonomy from Constantinople. Two exarchates were established, one in Italy, with seat at Ravenna (hence known as the Exarchate of Ravenna), and one in Africa, based at Carthage and including all imperial possessions in the Western Mediterranean. The first African exarch was the patricius Gennadius.[6]

Mauretania Caesariensis and Mauretania Sitifensis were merged to form the new province of "Mauretania Prima", while Maretania Tingitana, effectively reduced to the city of Septum (Ceuta), was combined with the citadels of the Spanish coast (Spania) and the Balearic islands to form "Mauretania Secunda". The African exarch was in possession of Mauretania Secunda, which was little more than a tiny outpost in southern Spain, beleaguered by the Visigoths. The last Spanish strongholds were conquered by the Visigoths in c. 624 by the Visigoths, reducing "Mauretania Seconda" across Gibraltar to only the fort of Septum.

See also

Line notes

References

  • Tingitana
  • Westermann, Großer Atlas zur Weltgeschichte (in German)
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.