Europe 69 AD: Year of the Four Emperors: Vitellius

Political map of Europe & the Mediterranean on 15 Jul 69 AD (The Flavian Dynasty: Year of the Four Emperors: Vitellius), showing the following events: Principate of Vitellius; Flavian Revolt.

Having gained victory over Otho (April 69), Vitellius became emperor, but his reign was soon challenged in the East, where many had supported Otho. In July the legions in Egypt, Judea, and Syria rose up under the leadership of the general Vespasian—who had been suppressing the Jewish revolt—and prepared to march on Italy.

Main Events

16 Apr–21 Dec 69 AD Principate of Vitellius

Following the defeat of Otho in April 69 AD, Vitellius made his way to Rome with his Rhine legions and assumed the position of emperor. Although he initiated a few long-lasting reforms and attempted to rally public support by imitating the still-popular Nero, his rule was viewed with distrust by the Syrian and Danube legions, who soon rallied behind Vespasian and invaded Italy. Facing defeat, Vitellius attempted to abdicate but was stopped by his supporters, leading to his ultimate defeat and execution in wikipedia

1–11 Jul 69 AD Flavian Revolt

The legions of the east were distrustful of the influence the Rhine legions had over Vitellius, especially as many of the Danube legions had supported Otho. By mid-69 AD conspirators in the east had persuaded the 59-year-old general Titus Flavius Vespasian—at the time engaged in suppressing the Jewish revolt—to make a bid for the throne. On 1 July Vespasian was proclaimed emperor at Alexandria, traveling to Judea and Syria to receive oaths of allegiance over the next ten wikipedia