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In The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Gibbon mentions that Roman magistrates under Constantinus the Great had such titles as; your Sincerity, your Gravity, your Excellency, your Eminence, your sublime and wonderful Magnitude, your illustrious and magnificent Highness (Ch. 27 in Volume 2). I have been trying to find them in the original language with no avail. I am not even sure if they were originally in Latin or Greek.

A note in Decline and Fall suggests Gibbon took those "wonderful" titles from Notitia Dignitatum. I have consulted that too, but cannot seem to find anything related.

I hope someone could help me. Thanks in advance.

  • Welcome to the site. Nice question. – Felix Goldberg Dec 10 '14 at 0:38
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Wikipedia has separate articles on the different ranks, but they are not (as of this writing) systematically categorized. For example: Illustris or Gloriosissimus.

The Illustris article refers to Jones, A.H.M., The Later Roman Empire 284-602, A Social, Economic, and Administrative Survey (Oxford: Blackwell, 1964, repr. Johns Hopkins UP, 1986) which is a famous work and probably has all the information you need.

P.S. Note that the titles shifted meanings over a centuries and often what had been a very high rank would become an almost entry-level designation a few centuries later.

P.P.S. If you search your link of the Notitia for 'illustris' you'll find it all over the place.

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