A Dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology

Smith, William

A Dictionary of Greek and Roman biography and mythology. William Smith, LLD, ed. 1890

2. A Phoenician of humble extraction, who nevertheless numbered among his lineal descendants, in the three generations which followed immediately after him, four emperors and four Augustae, -- Caracalla, Geta, Elagabalus, Alexander Severus, Julia Domna, Julia Maesa, Julia Soemias, and Julia Mamaea, besides having an emperor (Sept. Severus) for his son-in-law. From him Caracalla, Elagabalus, and Alexander Severus all bore the name of Bassianus; and we find his grand-daughter Julia Soemias entitled Bassiana in a remarkable bilingual inscription discovered at Velitrae and published with a dissertation at Rome in 1765. (Aurelius Victor, Epit. 100.21, has preserved his name; and from an expression used by Dio Cassius, 78.24, with regard to Julia Domna, we infer his station in life. See also the genealogical table prefixed to the article CARACALLA.)