Archiver > GEN-ANCIENT > 2004-04 > 1083246236

From: The Williams Family <>
Subject: Ancestry of Flavius Afranius Syagrius
Date: Thu, 29 Apr 2004 08:42:51 -0700


It is relatively well-known that Christian Settipani has presented a
good case for Charlemagne and his innumerable descendants being
descended from Flavius Afranius Syagrius, consul in 382 [1]. I have
not, however, seen much discussion of the ancestry later presented by
him for Syagrius in his _Continuite_ [2]. Therefore, I would like to
point out two very interesting lines which can be drawn back from
Syagrius based upon Settipani's work. I would be interested in any
comments, corrections or additions.

Settipani supposes, not unreasonably, that Flavius Afranius Syagrius
must be the great-grandson of Afranius Hannibalianus, eq. Rom., PPO,
consul in 292 (all this is from the table on p. 380 of _Continuite_
unless stated otherwise). Hannibalianus' wife was Eutropia, a Syrian,
who later married Maximian. He further theorizes, again based upon
onomastics, that Afranius Hannibalianus was the maternal grandson of
Hannibalianus, a suffect, and a supposed wife named [Flavia], and that
the Flavia Demetria Flacilla who married Marcus Cornelius Aurelius
Theodorus is thus his (Afranius Hannibalianus') aunt.
The ancestry of Hannibalianus' wife can reasonably be inferred from
the names of his daughters: Flavia Demetria Flaccilla and Capitolina.
It would seem only reasonable that he was brother-in-law of T. Flavius
Capitolinus and T. Flavius Clitosthenes. These brothers are known to be
sons of T. Flavius Stasicles Metrophanes, a priest of Zeus, and
Settipani further supposes that their mother, [Claudia Capitolina], was
most probably the daughter of Tiberius Claudius Bassus Capitolinus,
proconsul of Asia, and his wife Numeria Marcella.
From this point the lines I have been examining diverge. The first
stems from T. Flavius Stasicles Metrophanes:

1. T. Flavius Stasicles Metrophanes, priest of Zeus, b. say A.D. 190.
2. Claudia Frontoniana. m. to T. Flavius Clitosthenes Iulianus,
prytane, irenarque, suffect.
3. [Themistoclea]. m. to Tiberius Claudius Frontonianus, asiarque,
curator, living A.D. 165.
(The link between [Themistoclea] and her father is only dotted but
apparently rests upon the name Themistocles entering the family at that
point. From here on the data is from the chart on p. 378)
4. Tiberius Claudius Sospes, dadouque, d. ca. A.D. 150. m. to Claudia
Philipe, dau. of Tiberius Claudius Demostratus.
5. Tiberius Claudius Lysiades VI, archon 117/36, dadouque after 120. m.
to [Antonia], poss. dau. of Antonius Sospres, rhetor at Corinth.
6. Tiberius Claudius Leonides VII, dadouque 100/125. m. to Artemisia,
dau. of Alexandros.
(another dotted line but there is very strong onomastic evidence at this
7. Tiberius Claudius Lysiades, archon 38/39. m. to [Cephisodora], poss.
dau. of Diocles.
(again a dotted line)
8. Leonides V, archon 12 B.C./A.D. 11, hoplite general.
9. Leonides IV Leonidous Meliteus. m. to Chrysosthemis Phaidrou
10. [Timothea]. m. to Leonides III.
11. Philippe. m. to Diocles Meliteus.
12. Medeios, descendant of Lycurgus. m. to Timothea, descendant of
Conon and Pericles.

Can any of these Spartan and Athenian lines be traced back further?
Clearly in their time they claimed descent from a much more remote
The second line is that of Tiberius Claudius Bassus Capitolinus:

1. [Tiberius] Claudius Bassus Capitolinus. m. to Numeria Marcella.
(Settipani supposes Capitolinus to be a great-great-grandson of 5. based
on the fact that 5. had a daughter named Claudia Capitolina. From here
on the information is derived from the chart on p. 448)
5. Na., a princess, possibly of Commagene. m. to Tiberius Claudius
Balbillus, praefect of Egypt, A.D. 55-59.
6. Antiochus IV, King of Commagene, A.D. 38-72, issue of Alexander the
Great [sic]. m. to his sister Iotape.
7. Antiochus III, King of Commagene. d. A.D. 17. Etc., etc.

What is the likelihood of these lines being accurate? They seem
reasonable but basing something solely on onomastics is a dangerous

Kelsey J. Williams

1 - Christian Settipani, _Les Ancetres de Charlemagne_ (Paris, 1989),
118, 130, 137.
2 - Christian Settipani, _Continuite gentilice et continuite familiale
dans les familles Senatoriales Romaines a l'epoque imperiale: Mythe et
Realite_ (Oxford, 2000), 380.

This thread: