"Galla Placidia" Mausoleum Galla Placida Tip by iandsmith
Mausoleum Galla Placida, Ravenna: 24 reviews and 59 photos
Were you to write a novel of a noble lady of these times (4th and 5th century) you couldn't even come close to this remarkable woman's life. Born at an uncertain date (392 seems close) in Constantinople.
It's far too long and bizarre to explain here how she evolved into a position of power but her mother died young and, to maintain power, her father Theodosius sent her step brother and her off to Milan where they set up court not long before he died.
In 400 AD she was betrothed, aged 8, for political purposes but, when she was 18 she was kidnapped by the Visigoths who had attacked Rome where she had moved to.
While they hunted for food she weaved her charms, aided by her beauty, and when the chief Alaric died a year later his brother-in-law Ataulf, who fancied Galla, took power and headed for Gaul.
Chased by Honorius (Galla's brother) they fled from place to place until Galla had her first child in Barcelona in 415 AD, tragically the same year Ataulf was stabbed to death by his stablemaster. The new Gothic king Sigeric killed Ataulf's children by his first marriage, humiliated Galla in public and abused her physically but he, too, was killed after only seven days.
In 417 AD Honorius forced his sister to marry the Roman consul Constans. Her personality overshadowed his and he descended into melancholy as Gallia manipulated him, always seeking to gain the territory her Visigoths had been promised.
She succeeded in this and had two children by Constans and she was conferred the title Augustus; but Constans died in 421.
Factional war broke out in Ravenna and Honorius feared Galla was plotting against him and sent her to Rome but he died in 423 and the Western Empire throne was vacant.
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