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Caracalla and the divine: emperor worship and representation in the visual language of Roman Asia Minor
Anatolian Studies  (IF),  Pub Date : 2020-07-02, DOI: 10.1017/s0066154620000010
Dario Calomino

This paper discusses the visual language adopted in the cities of Asia Minor to represent the emperor Caracalla in the years 214–216, which he spent travelling between the Anatolian region, Egypt and the Near East. The focus of this study is the imagery designed to express his relation with the divine through the overlapping representations of the emperor as a devotee and peer of the gods, and as a divine being. The first part of the study compares Rome to Asia Minor to show divergences as well as possible links between provincial and metropolitan media, discussing local and imperial responses to the emperor governing from the Roman East. The second part focuses on the imagery introduced in Asia Minor to represent the worship of the living Roman emperor and his cult-image in particular, providing insights into the creation of extraordinary visual patterns that remained unique to the reign of Caracalla.