Aemilius Paulus

(Lucius Aemilius Paullus Macedonicus)

229–160 BC

Roman triumph
Aemilius Paulus Macedonicus was the son of the consul Aemilius Paulus who died at Cannae. He was a well educated patrician, fluent in Greek, and like his colleague Flamininus, very respectful of Greek culture. He was a competent general who had won victories in Italy against the Ligurians, but became really distinguished in 168 B.C. when he lead the Romans against Perseus, the King of Macedonia at Pydna in 168 B.C. The Romans had beaten Perseus's father, Philip V. of Macedonia, but had allowed him to keep his crown, as an ally of Rome. Perseus, joining with some cities in Greece, had rebelled. The Roman victory at Pydna permanently destroyed the power of Macedonia, and put all of Greece firmly under Roman control.

Aemilius is most well known for his spectacular triumph, one of the greatest Rome had ever seen. Ironically, however, two of the conqueror's young sons died within a month of his great triumph. Aemilius was a friend of the Greco-Roman historian Polybius.

Key events during the life of Aemilius Paulus Macedonicus:

182 BC
First consulship. Conquered Inguani, tribe in northern Italy.
171 BC
Start of Third Macedonian War against Philip V's son Perseus.
168 BC
Second consulship. Led Rome to victory at Battle of Pydna; Greece fell under Roman protectorate.
167 BC
Glorious triumph is held in Rome, but two of Paulus's son's died within a month of the triumph.
164 BC
Elected Censor.

Other Resources

Story Links
Book Links
Triumph  in  Tales of the Romans: The Children's Plutarch  by  F. J. Gould
Greece a Roman Province  in  The Story of the Greeks  by  H. A. Guerber
Aemilius Paulus  in  Our Young Folks' Plutarch  by  Rosalie Kaufman
Triumph of Rome  in  On the Shores of the Great Sea  by  M. B. Synge

Short Biography
Polybius Taken as Greek hostage during Macedonian wars; historian of Punic Wars.
Flamininus Led Rome against Philip V in second Macedonian War.
Cato (the censor) Roman censor, urged destruction of Carthage before third Punic War.