Hadrian’s Wall is considered as one of ancient civilisation’s greatest archaeological constructions. It was built as a barrier separating the Roman Empire and the Barbarians. The wall was built by Empire Hadrian, one of the most famous Roman empires today because of his achievements.
The emperor was a former militant commander and he was the builder and the designer of the wall. He was known for his construction and architectural endeavours, but his most notable achievement was the wall. He is considered as one of the five good emperors of Rome. Suffice his military background; Hadrian was ironically a leader who solved his problems with diplomacy rather than war. He ordered the wall to be painted white so that it can glitter in the sun to show the power of Rome. Such unique concepts made the Roman people believe in their leader more growing the nation beyond military intimidation.
During his last years, Hadrian retired back to his palace and embanked in writing rather than politics. He died in 138 AD from a heart attack.
After the death of Hadrian, Empire Antonius Pius took over. The new empire did not share the same ideology as Hadrian and abandoned the use Hadrian’s Wall. The reason for this was that Pius did not think that Hadrian’s Wall was practical enough to serve as a strategic military point. The wall in his view was simply a boundary and made Rome military disadvantaged. His claim was supported by the small gateways that would not allow a big army through fast enough in case of an ambush but was ideal to allow the locals through.
Emperor Antonius Pius constructed his own wall further north that was more practical called the Antonine Wall. The new wall had more military forts, and next to it a deep trench was constructed on the outer side of the wall. This made the wall appear taller and harder for intruders to penetrate. However the Antonine Wall did not last as only eight years after its construction and it was abandoned.
After Emperor Antonius Pius, Marcus Aurelius took over and set to re-establish Hadrian’s Wall. Antonius Pius had failed to capture the northern lands and, therefore, it made no sense for Marcus Aurelius to continue using the wall. He made renovations to the collapsed wall as the locals had taken the material from the wall.
Marcus was considered the true heir to Hadrian and the last of the five good emperors. After re-establishing Hadrian’s Wall, he set to reuse the Legion system of governance formally used by Hadrian to significant effect.
Septimius took over as emperor from 193 to 211; he began to rebuild the Antonine Wall. But to his credit, he did not abandon Hadrian’s Wall but strengthened it. He held that two walls were a better defence than one. His aim for strengthening both the walls were to invade Scotland. He also used ramparts as a defensive technique that fortified his military camps. He died before he could claim Scotland in 211 AD.
Hadrian’s Wall has aided and assisted many emperors after its construction. It acted both as a superior military tactic, but also added a physiological advantage to its enemies due to its design. Due to its vivid ruins today, the wall was clearly one of the best ancient constructed structures.