Diana Augusta

Diana I Anicia
Augusta
Diana Augusta in 1994.jpg
Court photograph of Diana taken in 1990
Latin Empress
Reign12 April 1945 – 1 January 2000
Coronation24 December 1955
PredecessorConstantine XIX
SuccessorJason VI
Regent
Co-monarchLeo X Claudius(1957–1997)
Jason VI (as junior emperor from 1993–2000)
Born (1938-11-12) 12 November 1938 (age 82)
Palatium Purpura, Ascanium, Latium
Spouse
Issue
see details...
Full name
Diana Anicia Maria Theodora Constantia Caesaris Augusta
HouseAnicia
FatherConstantine XIX
MotherMarie Christine of Épernon
ReligionImperial Church (Catholicism)

Diana I Anicia (Diana Anicia Maria Theodora Constantina Caesaris Augusta; b. 12 November 1938), commonly referred to as Diana Augusta, was the 125th monarch of the Latin Empire, and the fifth woman to serve as monarch in her own right. She reigned from 1946 until her abdication in 2000, making her one of Latium's longest reigning monarchs. Her rule began under a regency in 1945, which lasted until 1955. Her eldest son Jason VI served as co-ruler with Diana from 1993 until her abdication in 2000.

Diana is the eldest child of Emperor Constantine XIX and Empress Marie Christine. At the point of her birth, she was third in the line of succession. She had not yet entered public life when her mother, father and brothers were executed by Orestes Cotta and the VMNO in 1945. Diana and her younger sister Zoe were spared from the same fate as their family as they were traveling from a visit to their grandmother's home in rural Sorrentia to Ascanium.

Diana was a key figure throughout the Social War, following her proclamation as Empress by The Duke of Adrianople and loyal legions. Though only a young girl, she was seen as a stabilizing figure during the war, often present at military camps, refugee centers, and other public appearances that greatly improved moral for the Imperial cause throughout the war. At the war's conclusion she called for the Utica War Crime Trials for members of the Latin Social State – mostly its high command.

Diana's reign is often considered to be a turning point in Latin history, and one of monumental constitutional reform. Early in Diana's reign, she issued an Imperial Edict to begin constitutional reform, which became the Acts of Constitutional Reform. Most point to three crowning achievements of Diana's reign, including the enactment of universal suffrage and the introduction of universal healthcare.

She faced a great deal of pressure to get married at the end of her regency, with some Senators calling for her coronation to be postponed until she married. Diana was betrothed to Leo Claudius, son of eldest son of prominent nobleman, politician, general and Social War hero The Duke of Adrianople, since 1945, but repeatedly pushed against the match throughout regency. She and Claudius married on 8 June 1952. Diana and Leo's early marriage is said to have been a struggle for each, as Diana also struggled through a stillbirth and death of her first born. Together the couple had eight surviving children: Christina, Isabella, Jason, Theodosius, Isadora, John, Joanna, and Eirene.

Early Life

Photograph of Diana on her 7th birthday in 1940.

Diana was born on 12 November 1938 at Palatium Purpura as the first child and daughter of Constantine XIX and his wife Marie Christine of Épernon. Born during the reign of her father, Diana was awarded the title ''Born in the Purple'' to use throughout her life. She was baptized at Sancta Sapientia in Castellum by Archbishop Menas Aternius of Castellum on Christmas Day in 1938. Her godparents were Robert VI of Lyncanestria (her mother's uncle); Princess Françoise-Athénaïs of Épernon (her mother's sister); Empress Dowager Alexandra (her father's grandmother); and Praetorian Prefect John Keroularios (her father's friend). She was often called "Dee" or "Didi" by her close family, her father in particular, who is said to have cherished Diana from an early age. Diana had two older brothers: John and Michael; and a younger sister Zoe who were born in 1934, 1936 and 1941 respectively. Zoe was Diana's only sibling to survive to adulthood.

Diana was primarily educated by her mother and primarily her governess, Eirene Amiroutzina, whom Diana states she was extremely fond of growing up. Her education focused on lessons in language, literature and history, with Diana stating that Amiroutzina was key in instilling a love of classics early in her childhood. Diana occasionally received lessons on law as she neared her teenage years, with a heavy focus on the constitution throughout her regency. Diana grew up speaking her native Latin, as well as Imbrosian, and Audonian due to her mother's Lyncanestrian nationality. Diana was said to have had tutors in Audonic, Mysian, and Vardanan, and excelled in languages. As a child, Diana's tutors referred to her as "your average, playful little girl, but with a certain sensibility" even at a young age.

Ascension and Social War

April 1945 coup

Diana was visiting her great-grandmother Alexandra's villa in rural county Appennina, along with her younger sister, Zoe, when she first heard news of the coup and assassination of Emperor Constantine XIX, brothers, and capture of her mother by then Consul Orestes Cotta. Reportedly, Diana and her sister were to travel back to Ascanium and return by April 12, though were delayed by the weather and vehicles needing repair. Due to the remoteness of Dowager Empress Alexandra's estate, the Imperial convoy was not notified of the Emperor's demise until the morning of April 13 when they reached Ostia. Little has been discussed by Diana or written historians about what transpired after Cotta's announcement, other than the The Duke of Adrianople departed Adrianople with the 7th Legion, and 18th Legion on April 14, with little certainty of his destination due to news of the siege in Olympia, where his nephew was a cadet. On April 18, the Duke encountered Diana and her retainers outside of Iuvavum, in rural central Latium.

Dowager Empress Alexandra's estate in Appennina, where Diana resided during early stages of the war.

At Iuvavum, Diana and Claudius are first believed to have met, resulting in Claudius pledging his legions to the Imperial cause, which included nearly all of western and southern Latium. Though Diana had gained most of the military and state apparatus in the west, Cotta and rebel forces announced that Diana and the Imperials must surrender by April 22 or Empress Marie Christine would be executed. The surrender never occurred and Marie Christine was executed on April 22 as promised. Diana once said in an interview that the decision "weighed" on her even fifty years later.

Diana was proclaimed Latin Empress by The Duke of Adrianople and the 7th Legion outside of Castellum on April 21, noticeably in defiance of rebel demands. The event was broadcast on radio. At midnight on April 22, the Alban government and garrison in Castellum, under the command of Deputy Urban Prefect Aurelius Rasinius, joined and provided support to the Imperial war effort. Days later, Diana made her first television broadcast as Empress, which she declared Castellum her capital and asked for support of all Latins and members of the international community. According to post-war investigations and first-hand accounts, Diana's composure during the broadcast "shocked Cotta to his core" and sent him into a fit of rage.

Betrothal

Rumors of betrothal for Diana was always widely speculated, even before the Social War and her ascension to the Latin throne. Courtiers during her father's reign often spoke that "Diana's hand [in marriage] was widely sought after, even among [the Claudii]", which came as a surprise to many after rejections by the Claudii to marry into the Imperial Family in the past. Emperor Constantine XIX refused numerous offers of betrothal from Latin nobility, including offers from The Duke of Adrianople, as well as royal matches with members of the Sydalene royal family, and Ghantish, Lyncanestrian and Vannoisian imperial lines. However, Diana was eventually betrothed to Leo Claudius on 21 September 1946. The agreement was widely speculated to be negotiated and agreed upon in April 1945, with those around both Diana and the Claudii suggesting that it was a requirement for any support for Diana's war effort. The Duke of Adrianople, including subsequent members of the House of Claudius, and Diana have all rejected the notion. The agreement, later released under the Transparent Information Act, stipulated that Diana was to marry Leo following the end of her regency on her 17th birthday in November 1955.

After the announcement, Leo left his father's military camp and joined Diana's court in Castellum. Diana and Leo frequently made joint public appearances from September 1946 until January 1947 when Leo rejoined his father's legions and a second evacuation of court to Castra Felicies. Their relationship was described as "frosty" according to a Diana biographer, Flavius Sempronius, whom noted that it was apparent in all of their joint public appearances early on.

Battle of Castellum

At Jason Claudius, Duke of Adrianople's suggestion and urging, Diana remained in Castellum for the remained in Castellum at the Palace of Augustus throughout April; this was reportedly cause of controversy among high ranking members of court and even Dowager Empress-Regent Alexandra; however Princess Zoe and others were sent to Adrianople. Imperial court was forced out of the Palatine and Castellum on May 1 after reports of republican aircraft headed towards the city. According to Flavius Sempronius, a prominent biographer of Diana, she and her family were forced to sneak out of the capital through the catacombs beneath the city in the middle of the night.

Once again, Diana and her sister Zoe returned to their great-grandmother Alexandra's villa in Appennina with a small retinue of Praetorians. Diana made a radio broadcast from the villa days later to announce her survival and offer prayers for those that were unable to evacuate Castellum before the rebel bombings. The bombings, now referred to as the Battle of Castellum, lasted for nearly two weeks before loyalist members of the Imperial Air Force were able to contest the skies around Diana's capital city and eventually ward off further air attacks. Diana would not return to Castellum until January 1946 though frequently moved around to nearby towns and villages.

Surrender of Ascanium

By 1947, the Social War was drawing to a close with Imperial forces pushing the remaining Republican armies back to Ascanium and the surrounding area. At the time, Diana returned to Castellum and the Palace of Augustus, where she was often seen visiting soup kitchens, military hospitals, and former battle sites near the capital. In September, the Battle of Ascanium was nearing its end, prompting Diana to visit the capital after members of the Social Republic's remaining high command offered surrender. The Duke of Adrianople, according to reports, wished to proceed with an unconditional surrender before Diana arrived, though many Senators pushed for Diana to attend and formerly accept the surrender of Republican leadership under the command Flavius Luonercus, who was the highest ranking officer remaining following the suicide of Orestes Cotta. Diana entered the city on 19 September 1947, and accepted the surrender of Luonercus inside the former Senate House in Ascanium.

Utica trials

Following the surrender of the Social Republic, Senators voted in favor of Diana'a proposal, drafted by the Empress's Council, to hold criminal trials and military tribunals for surrendered members of the Republican high command and leaders. The trials were highly contested in the Senate, with many more conservative members arguing for Diana to sentence the Republican leaders to death without trial. One senator, Honorius Judocus, was quoted as saying, "[The republicans] killed [Diana's family], ruthlessly butchered their countryman for sport, and nearly broke Latium for all time. They deserve a slow and painful death." Many attribute these harsh attitudes as a reaction to Jason Claudius, Duke of Adrianople's alleged role in the nailing of Orestes Cotta's hands and tongue to the Senate doors in Ascanium before Diana's arrival.

The trials were not postponed or cancelled, and took place from 6 November 1950 until 2 April 1951. Though only 15 years old at the time, Diana attended the trial of Spurius Avitus, former leader of the VMNO and chief architect of the 1945 coup and murders of her father, Emperor Constantine XIX, and her brothers, John and Michael. She was said to have a steely demeanor during her attendance, though courtiers say that Diana was "extremely nervous and nearly cancelled." Avitus was sentenced to death by the military tribunal, along with 11 others among 15 criminals.

Early reign

Gelonian War

Coronation and wedding

Diana's official coronation portrait, 1956.

Diana was betrothed to Leo Claudius since her ascension to the throne in April 1945. At the time of the betrothal, Diana was only 6 years old, and the agreement stipulating a wedding at the end of Diana's regency in 1955. By March 1955, plans were drawn up for Diana's coronation and a wedding to follow in a joint ceremony at Sancta Sapientia, in Castellum. There were concerns among the Senate that Sancta Sapientia wouldn't be prepared in time to hold such events, with Consul Jason Claudius, Duke of Adrianople suggesting that the wedding be held in Adrianople a week after Diana's 17th birthday; with a joint coronation to take place on Christmas Day of the same year. Diana and her regent, Theophylatcus, Duke of Ossonoba, rejected the proposal.

File:Grace kelly wedding dress.jpg
Diana before her wedding to Leo Claudius on 18 June 1956.

In April 1955, Diana presented her own plans to her Sacred Assembly for a coronation on her 17th birthday, but did not include any mention of a wedding to Leo. Private negotiations followed with an announcement of Diana's coronation on Christmas Day 1955 in Castellum ab Alba. However, her marriage to Leo Claudius was postponed until further planning could take place. This reportedly caused a rift between the Imperial Household and the Claudii. A marriage date was eventually agreed upon for 18 June 1956, which would take place following a joint tour of the country by Diana and Leo.

Diana and her son Jason after landing at Castellum International Airport in 1969.

Diana holds the distinction for having one of the longest spans of time between her ascension and coronation at 11 years. She was coronated on 24 December 1955 at Sancta Sapientia. The coronation was proceeded by the traditional triumphal procession through the city on quadriga beginning at the Palace of Augustus.

On Wednesday, 18 June 1952 at Sancta Sapientia, Diana and Leo were wed by Pope Paul XI. It was an event celebrated throughout Latium with parades, games and other events put on by the Imperial Household and Dukedom of Adrianople. Their marriage appeared to be a pleasant and loving one outwardly, though there was concern from among the Senate and nobility over their initial lack of heirs. These complaints ceased after Imperial Offices announced that Diana was pregnant and due to have her first child in June 1955, with the birth of Alexander, Prince of Youth. However, Prince Alexander died before his baptism from to what is thought to be sudden infant death syndrome. Alexander's death reportedly struck Diana hard, and resulted in a strained relationship in her marriage according to courtiers. Diana' second pregnancy came in 1959, though resulted in a stillbirth. Diana's first surviving child, Isabella, was born in January 1963, soon followed by the birth of the future Jason VI Augustus in December 1963.

Over the course of their nearly 45 year marriage, Diana and Leo had eight surviving children, Princess Christina of Latium, Princess Isabella of Latium, Jason VI Augustus, Prince Theodosius, Duke of Beroea, Isadora, Duchess of Morlac, Prince John, Duke of Aurunca, Joanna, Duchess of Ravenna, and Eirene, Queen of Dakmoor, and 41 grandchildren.

1955 Insurrection and riots

In March 1955, Diana visited the city of Mediolanum in northern Latium amidst a Senate vote for further funds towards the final stages of the post-war reconstruction and infrastructure improvements. Amidst her visit with local government officials and Propraetor Theophylactus Anicius, Count of Callatis, reports of a planned socialist uprising in nearby Caudinium began to reach Diana and her government ministers in the Mediolanum. The reports ultimately proved to be true when a socialist militia claimed to have taken control of Caudinium and expelled local police forces. The militia was believed to number around 200-300, of which maybe half were armed with modern firearms; however, official records of the incident never indicated an exact number. The incident saw Diana appoint her husband, Leo X Claudius, to lead a Legionary force stationed near Mediolanum. Leo eventually put down the insurrection, though not before the militia murdered a Gelonian family that resided in the city.

The deaths of the Gelonian family in Caudinium sparked a riot in the city of Gelonian-majority populated city of Ranneg. Now known as the Ranneg Riots, the event saw residents briefly clash with local police after gatherings called for the leaders of the Caudinium insurrection to be given the death penalty for their role in the murder of a local Gelonian family. The riots also coincided with the Ranneg football derby between local teams Ranneg FC and Brennia, from which numerous fans were ejected from the stands following fights over the game. During the riots, Diana was in Caudinium leading a prayer vigil for the murdered Gelonian family, which many attribute to the calming of the riots. The riots were eventually quelled on 14 April 1955 after four days and 16 deaths. Diana would later visit Ranneg a week later on April 22, where she met with local leaders and held a prayer vigil, and instructed the local government to hold a citizens forum, which prompted a modernization of Scholarian Guard training, equipment and recruitment throughout the country.

Belisarian integration

Diana on the eve of the 1962 Belisarian Summit.

Assassination attempts

Reign

Diana at the 1977 Ludi Circenses.

1970s

1980s

1990s

Abdication

File:Diana Augusta in 1990s.jpg
Diana after her abdication in 2001.

Post-abdication life

Titles, styles and arms

Titles and Styles

  • 12 November 1938 – 12 April 1945: Her Imperial Highness The Princess Diana
  • 12 April 1945 – 1 January 2000: Her Imperial Majesty The Empress
  • 1 January 2000 – present: Her Imperial Majesty The Empress Diana Augusta

From her birth, Diana held the rank of "princess" with the territorial designation "of Latium". Due to her birth occurring during her father's reign, Diana was entitled to bear the additional title Purpurogenita. Upon her ascension, Diana assumed the title of "Empress", becoming the first empress regnant since the reign of her grandmother Joanna. In 1956, she assumed the honorific "Augusta" henceforth being known as Diana Augusta. Following her abdication in 2000, Diana has retained the title and styles of Empress that she held during her reign.

Foreign Honors

Issue

Name Date of birth Date of death Spouses
Constantine, Prince of Youth 4 June 1959 26 February 1960(1960-02-26) (aged 0)
Isabella, Empress Mother of Ghant (1962-01-13) 13 January 1962 (age 59) Married John IV of Ghant, and had issue.
Jason VI 8 April 1964 3 November 2016(2016-11-03) (aged 52) Married thrice. 1st: Stephania Pinaria (1965–1991), and had issue. 2nd: Zoe Verrucosa (b. 1975), and had issue. Marsella Atmos (b. 1966), had issue.
Prince Theodosius, Duke of Beroea (1966-09-02) 2 September 1966 (age 54) Princess Emma of Vannois (b. 1973), and had issue.
Isadora, Duchess of Morlac (1968-03-13) 13 March 1968 (age 53) Remy, Duke of Morlac (b. 1965), and had issue.
Prince John, Duke of Aurunca (1970-06-02) 2 June 1970 (age 51) Princess Diana of Dakmoor (b. 1971), and had issue.
Princess Joanna of Latium (1970-06-02) 2 June 1970 (age 51) Michael, Duke of Ravenna (b. 1964), and had issue.
Christina, Queen of Dakmoor (1972-11-27) 27 November 1972 (age 48) 1st: Desiderius, Prince of Petra (1962–2015), and had issue. 2nd: Malibar, King of Dakmoor, and had issue.
Princess Eirene (1975-05-07) 7 May 1975 (age 46) 1st: Theodosius Julius, and had issue; 2nd:

Ancestry

See also