The future Roman emperor Commodus was born 161 AD to the emperor Marcus Aurelius and Faustina. As a boy, Commodus went with his father on his military expeditions to the Rhine and Danube frontiers and was quiet spoiled .Upon his father's death in 180 AD ,Commodus became the next emperor of Rome and the last of the Antoinne's .
Commodus was liked well by the lower class people and the soldiers for most of his reign but was loathed by the senate due to overtaxing. He gave the outward appearance of a generous and stable reign but soon power corrupted him and he committed many perverted acts and ensued on a reign of terror .Commodus used to dress as Hercules so as to associate himself with the god Jupiter .He also, liked to fight in the arena among the criminals and gladiators in order to show that his strength was befitting of a god. Suprisingly, Commodus was very skilled in the arena and beat many tough gladiators. These actions appalled the whole Roman populace because they deemed it unfitting for an emperor to fight in the arena.
Commodus believed that his reign had ushered in a golden age for Rome and did a number of things to show off his so called greatness. He renamed all the months on the calendar after each of his many titles as well he renamed the legions ,Rome, and the senate after himself. Commodus even declared himself the founder of a new Rome, a new Romulus.
Though nothing worthwhile occurred during the reign of Commodus, he did not persecute the Christians like previous emperors and a few conversions were said to have taken place during his reign. This tolerance to Christians did not help the emperor's popularity rating and there were numerous attempts made on his life. Commodus was finally struck down in the year 192 AD. He was strangled by a Greek athlete while bathing and had ruled for 12 years.
Commodus was the last Antoinne emperor and, after him, the Roman empire began it's long decline. He had failed the empire at the time it needed a strong and capable ruler to deal with the threat of impending barbarian invasions.