Lucius Pinarius


Lucius Pinarius

Lucius Pinarius Scarpus (flourished 1st century BC) was a Roman that lived in the late Roman Republic and the early Roman Empire. Scarpus’ mother was Atia Balba Tertia, while his father is an unnamed man from the gens Pinarius. It seems from his parent’s marriage, Scarpus was an only child.

His mother Atia Balba Tertia was a little known Roman noblewoman who was the third daughter and youngest child of Julia Caesaris Minor and praetor Marcus Atius Balbus. Through his maternal grandmother, he was a great nephew of dictator Gaius Julius Caesar. Julia was Caesar’s second eldest sister. Scarpus’ maternal cousins were consul Quintus Pedius, Octavia Minor (the fourth wife of Triumvir Mark Antony) and Octavian (future first Roman Emperor Augustus).

Not much is known Scarpus’ father. Scarpus paternal ancestry the gens Pinarius, was an ancient, distinguished family of patrician status. The family can be traced to the foundations of Rome. Various members of the gens served as priests and were among the first to serve a consuls in the republic.

Little is known on his early life. He is first mentioned in the ancient sources when Caesar is assassinated in Rome in March 44 BC. In the will of Caesar, Scarpus received one eighth of certain legacies after the legacies given to Octavian. He along with his cousins from the will became heirs to his great uncle.

Scarpus became an ally to Mark Antony and commanded for him against the war on Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus. In the years leading up to the Final War of the Roman Republic, in Actium Greece 31 BC, Antony appointed Scarpus to the military command of Cyrenaica. Scarpus had with him four legions to command. During his time in Cyrenaica Scarpus had control of the currency mint in Cyrene, as he became a moneyer. Scarpus had issued various coins bearing Antony’s name and Scarpus’ name was inscripted as an issuer of these coins.

After Antony and his fifth wife Ptolemaic Greek Queen Cleopatra VII of Egypt were defeated by Octavian at Actium, Scarpus withdrew his support from Antony and gave his support (including his legions) to Octavian. Antony after the defeat sailed back to North Africa and he had sent messengers to Scarpus for help.

Scarpus refused to see Antony’s messengers and put them to death. He gave his legions to Gaius Cornelius Gallus, Octavian’s lieutenant to command. As Octavian march through Asia, Syria and Judea to establish his authority and used Scarpus’ legions to march to Egypt to trap Antony.

When Antony and Cleopatra died, Octavian became the new Roman master and then emperor. Augustus had appointed his cousin as the Roman governor of Cyrenaica. Scarpus as he did for Antony, became a moneyer and had issued various coins bearing Augustus’ name. On these coins, Scarpus had his name inscripted as an issuer of the coins. Scarpus had a perfidious character; Augustus kept Scarpus as much as he could out of public office. Beyond this, nothing is known on Scarpus.

ources:

* Suetonius, The Lives of the Twelve Caesars, Caesar
* http://www.ancientlibrary.com/smith-bio/3068.html
* http://www.wildwinds.com/coins/imp/marc_antony/t.html

External links

* [http://www.wildwinds.com/coins/imp/marc_antony/t.html Coinage that Scarpus issued for Antony as moneyer in Cyrene. See the left side codes RSC 1a, RSC 1b & RSC 1d for coinage]
* [http://www.ancientlibrary.com/smith-bio/3068.html Coinage of Scarpus]


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