romanian literary monthly

~Ion Pachia-Tatomirescu: „Regalianus Dacia / Dacoromania“


Being unable to bear the terrible Romanic-Imperial exploitation, the officials’ abuses, the corruption, etc., starting with Gallienus’ ruling (253 – 268), the Wallachians / Dacoromanians of the Danubian provinces Pannonia, (Trajan) Dacia and Moesia rose in arms in the autumn / winter of the year 257 A. D. Even the governor of Pannonia, Ingenuus, a worthy general and politician, was at the head of the rebels, being himself a native of the rebels by birth. In his Wallachian Dacoromanian residence / “capital”, Sirmium (today Sremska Mitrovica – Jugoslavia), Ingenuus entitled himself emperor of the Wallachians / Dacoromanians of the Danube Valley. In the spring of the year 258 A. D., the emperor Gallienus and his repressive troups promptly started against the rebels (“usurpers”). Among the cavalry commanders who took part in the bloody repression of the rebels, there was also the Dacoromanian Marcus Acilius Aureolus. Ingenuus died in the battle for independence at Mursa (today Osjek). Gallienus showed his unparalled cruelty towards the rebellious Wallachians / Dacoromanians, particularly towards those in Moesia, ordering the death sentence for the rebels’ relatives, too, a fact which roused great discontent even among the Imperial armies, since most of the commanders arose from the Wallachians / Dacoromanians, and the majority of the common soldiers were Dacoromanians. In order to reduce the tensions in the Imperial armies, among the Dacoromanian soldies, towards the end of the spring of the year 258, Gallienus was forced to appoint the general Regalianus, the great grandson of the hero-king Decebalus, as the supreme commander of the Balkan-Danubian armies.

The records present Regalianus as commander of the armed forces in the dukedom of Illyria, a syntagm by means of which the Romanic-Imperial provinces in the Pelasgo-Daco-Thracian (Dacoromanian / Wallachian) space were designated: Thracia, Moesia, Dacia (Decebalus’ Dacia = North-Danubian Dacoromania), Dalmatia and Pannonia – «…dux factus est et dux totius Illyrici. Habet in potestatem Thracios, Moesos, Dalmatos, Pannonios, Dacos exercitus.». Regalianus – like his forefather, Decebalus, the king-hero of Sarmizegetusa – proved to be a great strategist; in Scriptores Historiae Augustae, the historian Trebellio Pollio emphasized that Regalianus «was always a man skilled in military matters» / «vir in re militari semper probatus»; «he valiantly fought many times against the Sarmatians» / «hic tamen multa fortiter contra Sarmatas gessit»; «it is said that he was of Dacian origin, being a relative of Decebalus himself» / «…gentis Daciae, Decibali ipsius, ut fertur, adfinis»; «…a thing which proves that he was worthy of ruling» / «…quod dignus videretur imperio».

Fig. 1. Regalianus’ Dacia / Dacoromania.

On June 21st, 258, at the same time with the beginning of the sacred week of the Salmosian / Zalmoxian warriors, of those who knew how to make themselves immortal, the Dacoromanians / Wallachians decided to continue the fight started under the leadership of Ingenuus against the Roman-Imperial oppression; Regalianus and the army under his command fraternized with the people revolted by the massacres ordered / led by Gallienus particularly among the Wallachian / Dacoromanian populations of Moesia, declared the independence of all the Dacoromanian / Wallachian ancient lands, proclaiming the Independent State of Dacia / Dacoromania (fig. 1).

Dacia (Dacoromania / Wallachia) «amissa est». Both the historians contemporary to the Roman emperor Gallienus and to the Dacoromanian emperor / “king” Regalianus, among whom the Athenian Dexip (210 – 280 A. D., in About the Scythians, a work dealing with the events between the years 238 and 268), and the historians of the following centuries – Eutropius (author of the famous history, Breviarium ab Urbe condita / A Short Histroy from the Foundation of Rome of 359 A. D.), Sextus Aurelius Victor (author of the work Caesares / About Emperors, in the year 360), Rufius Festus (who wrote – at the order of the emperor Valens – in 372, Breviarium rerum gestarum Populi Romani / A Short History of the Roman People), Aelius Spartianus, Aelius Lampridius, Iulius Capitolinus, Vulcacius Gallicanus, Trebellio Pollio, Flavius Vopiscus (Scriptores Historiae Augustae from the horizon of the year 394 A. D.), Zosimos, a.o. – stated – more or less outrightly – that the Romanic-Imperial provinces: Pannonia Superior / Inferior, (Trajan) Dacia / the Dacias, Moesia Superior / Inferior, Dardania, Dalmatia / Illyria, Scythia Minor / Major, Macedonia, Thracia – together with the descendants of the Pelasgo-Daco-Thracians, the Wallachians / Dacoromanians, to whom Costobocian-Dacia / Carpo-Dacia, or Free Dacia joined (since the territories unconquered by the Romans from the state of Dacia during Decebalus, from the Hercynic Forest, the Middle Vistula, to the Pripet and the Dnieper and the North-West of the Gaetic / Black Sea, constituted themselves into a free state under the leadership of the king Pieporu / Pieporus and of his descendants of the Piepors’ Dynasty, immediately after the death of the hero-king of Sarmizegetusa), during Gallienus, in the year 258 A. D., under the leadership of Regalianus, the great grandson of the hero-king Decebalus, united, breaking off with the Roman Empire – through a series of struggles / wars –, and founded the Independent State of Dacoromania (Dacia / Blachia).

Thus, Dacoromania (Dacia / Wallachia) «amissa est» since Gallienus’ ruling. For the “inaccurate” interpreters of the historical records regarding the Independent State of Dacia / Dacoromania, founded by Regalianus in the year 258 A. D., we recall to mind the meanings of the Latin verb amitto, ere, misi missum: 1. «to lose (suffering a loss)», “to lose a territory / town, the army / fleet, etc., in fight / war, of course”; 2. «to leave (willingly), to give up, to abandon»; 3. «to let go, to miss (unwillingly)» “the booty of one’s hands” / “the opportunity”, “the favourable moment”; 4. «to send away (far from oneself)». Gallienus lost in the confrontation with Regalianus, through a series of fights / wars, both the South-Danubian Dacia and the North-Danubian Dacia (Trajan-Dacia); Free Dacia united with the provinces freed from the Roman Empire, constituting the state of Dacoromania. The independence and the boundaries of Dacia / Dacoromania where masterly defended by Regalianus, who proved to be one of the greatest strategists of his time. First he insured stable alliances in the North-West, North, and East boundaries of Dacia / Dacoromania, with the Goths, the Gepidae, the Heruls, the Tervingians a.o., tribes which were always ready for an invasion led by Regalianus’ soldiers to the provinces of the Roman Empire situated at the borders with Dacia / Dacoromania, in the South, South-West, and West: in Bithynia (a province with an interference of populations, with many “betraying nests”, even if it had almost 50 per cent of Wallachian / Dacoromanian elements), to the Pontus, to Achaia / Greek, to Noricum, etc.; then he coordinated / synchronized the uprisings in other countries / provinces of the Roman Empire, such as Raetia, Gallia, Britannia, Egypt, etc., so that the power of the Romanic-Imperial armies should not be able to crush the Independent State of Dacia / Dacoromania.

The Independent State of Dacia / Dacoromania (fig. 1) under Regalianus (258 – 268 / 270) having the capital at Sarmizegetusa / Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegetusa, had its own currency, the Silver Regalianus (fig. 2) – the first coin of the free and united Dacoromanians / Wallachians, bearing the name of their first leader: «IMP. C.P.C. REGALIANU…» / «REGALIAN…» –, a well crystallized language, the archaic-Dacoromanian / the Wallachian, and a monotheistic religion, the Zalmoxianism.

The archaeological realities in the financial, religious, and legislative centre, Sarmizegetusa / Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegetusa, Regalianus’ capital, bear witness, over the millenniums, about Dacoromania’s independence; the last Roman coins found in circulation here were issued during Gallienus’ ruling, before the year 258 A. D., the year of the independence of Regalianus’ Dacoromania, the year in which the Silver Regalianus replaced Rome’s denarii. The American historian Paul MacKendrick, in his work The Dacian Stones Speak (1975 / 1978), also certifies: in Sarmizegetusa / Ulpia Traiana Sarmizegetusa, «the last (Roman) coins bear Gallienus’ effigy».


Fig. 2. Regalianus’ silver coin

After a decade of unsuccessful wars with the Dacoromanians’ emperor, the brillant strategist Regalianus, in the year 267 the emperor Gallienus mobilized considerable troups – under the leadership of the generals Marcianus, Cleodamus, Athenaeus, Aureolus, Dexip (the historian / commander of Athens), Claudius, a.o., in the provinces of the Roman Empire at the South border of Dacia / Dacoromania, in the Pontus, Bithynia, in Phrygia, in Achaia / Greece, Thessaly, in Epirus, with the intention of fighting a decisive battle. Regalianus, an expert in the Romanic-Imperial military realities at the South borders of Dacia / Dacoromania, directed a strong “invasion” of the North-Pontic peoples towards those provinces of the Roman Empire: the Goths (Ostrogoths, Visigoths), the Tervingians, the Greutungs, the Gepidae, the Heruls, the Peucians a.o., peoples who were – as the chronicles say – urged «to plunder / devastate the Roman Empire». The ravagings started in the province Pontus and were defeated / stopped only in Achaia / Hellada (Greece), in Thessaly and in Epirus; the Heruls besieged Athens; according to the accounts in Euagrios’ Church History, Dexip, “the general” / historian, in the year 267 «gathered two thousand men around him in order to face the Heruls’ attack on Athens», holding out against the attack until the spring / summer of the year 268, when Gallienus came to help Athens, leading a strong army, beating off and chasing the invaders on the territory of Dacia / Dacoromania, in the province Thracia, as far as the river Nestos / Mesta, where he fought the decisive battle with the Heruls; Gallienus was victorious in the battle on the river Nestos, taking even the Herulian king, Naulobatus, as a prisoner; but the trespassing of the Dacoromanian boundaries aroused the anger of the Dacoromanians of Thracia against him, making him “leave for Italy”. In the summer of the year 268 A. D. the emperor Gallienus, seeing the uselessness of his attempts to reintegrate Dacia / Dacoromania within the former boundaries of the Roman Empire, resorted to the treacherous solution, hiring the murderers of Regalianus; the criminals, paid by the Roman emperor Gallienus, succeeded to get into the camp of the Dacoromanian emperor Regalianus, immediately after the latter’s resounding victory against the Sarmatians / the Roxolans – who were annihilated at the Northern border of Pannonia. Gallienus’ Romanic-Imperial plotters succeeded to kill Regalianus in August 268. The reaction of the faithful Dacoromanian Knights of Zalmoxianism was extremely prompt, the Roman emperor Gallienus being murdered after a short while. The death of Regalianus roused indignation all over Dacia / Dacoromania.

Sulpicia Dryantilla / Druanţilă (268 – 270 A. D.). In the Roman Empire, Gallienus’ death caused “the civil wars” for the throne of Rome. In Dacia / Dacoromania, the leadership of the state was taken over by Regalianus’ wife, the Empress Sulpicia Druantila / Druanţilă (268 – 270 A. D.), an opportunity for coining her own money (fig. 3). Dacoromania’s Empress, Sulpicia Dryantila / Druanţilă, and the loyal generals of Regalianus’ armies, immediately after the treacherous assassination paid by Gallienus, in the autumn of the year 268, mobilized over 320,000 warriors in East Dacoromania – as Scriptores Historiae Augustae reveals, in order to give the finishing stroke to the Roman Empire. This strong army of Dacia / Dacoromania was joined with the peoples between the Dnieper, the Masagetae’s / the Azov Sea and in the Crimea: the Goths, the Heruls a.o. The campaign against the Roman Empire was unleashed in the winter / spring of the year 269 A. D. Referring to this campaign of the Dacoromanians, the historian Zosimos emphasized that: «the Dacoromanians joined the Heruls, the Peucians and the Goths and, gathering near the river Tyras / the Nister, which flows into the Pontus, built six thousand ships and, embarking 320,000 people on them, they set off at sea (…), the wind blowing from behind their ships» to the “Propontida Strait”. It in certain that such an outbreak of Dacoromanian forces had the intention of intimidating any other attempt of Rome to subjugate Dacia / Dacoromania.


Fig. 3. Dryantilla’s silver coin

Dacia / Dacoromania «…restituta…». In the year 270, Aurelianus became the emperor of Dacia / Dacoromania; in the same year he ascended the long-coveted imperial throne of Rome. Dacia / Dacoromania is integrated into the Roman Empire on the basis of Aurelianus’ Convention (an oath taken near Aquileia) – respected, to a greater of smaller extent, until after the Dacoromanian emperor of Constantinople, Focas (602 – 610). Therefore, in the year 270 A. D., under the emperor Aurelianus, there took place a great event: DACIA / DACOROMANIA (WALLACHIA) RESTITUTA…


Translated into English by prof. Gabriela PACHIA

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