Ni'ger, (Caius Pescennius.) a Roman commander,
and governor of Syria. On the death of Pertinax, 193
a.d., he became a competitor for the empire, with Septimius
Severus and Clodius Albinus for his rivals. Aftei
his army had been several times defeated by the former
in Asia Minor, he was made prisoner and put to death
in 194 A.D.
" Histoire des Empereurs."
Gaius Pescennius Niger (c. 135~140–194) was a Roman usurper from 193 to 194 during the Year of the Five
Emperors. Niger was born of an old Italian equestrian family.
As a usurper -
Niger was a governor of Syria who was proclaimed emperor by the eastern legions after the murder of Pertinax
and the auctioning off of the imperial title to Didius Julianus. Among the provinces that fell under his
direct control was Aegyptus, and he also enjoyed support from the government of Asia. Although these lands
contained great wealth, another rebel general, Septimius Severus, succeeding in taking Rome first, and he
then marched east to confront Niger. Niger was defeated at Cyzicus and Nicea (193) and then, definitively, at
Issus (194); forced to retreat to Antioch, Niger was killed while attempting to flee to Parthia. The name
"Niger" means "black", which incidentally, contrasts him with one of his rivals for the throne in 194 AD,
Clodius Albinus, whose name means "white".
As the city of Byzantium had supported Pescennius Niger, it was besieged and sacked by Septimus Severus,
before he rebuilt parts of it.