Flavius Claudius Iulianus born in 331 was the son of Julius Constantius.
In 337 following the death of Constantine, Julian’s cousin Constantius II led a massacre killing nearly all remaining male’s in his family in order to retain his power as sole emperor. Julian and his half brother Gallus along with Constantius’s two brothers were hot harmed.
Much of Julian’s early life was spent studying and among his many tutors were the Arian Christian Bishop of Nicomedia, a Gothic eunuch and the Christian bishop George.
While Constantius II set out to defeat usurper Magnentius who had killed his brother Constans in the west, he promoted Gallus to Caesar of the western empire. Gallus did not last long and was soon executed and Julian was elevated to take his position in 355.
During his reign he had many victories over invading armies and also set about preventing tax increases for the roman people.
In 360 the people of Paris proclaimed Julian as emperor and following the death of Constantius II it was revealed that Julian was recognised as his successor in his will.
He is known for instigating a huge religious reformation of the state and heavily supported the restoration of the old roman faith which was based on polytheism.
In 363 a campaign against the Sassanids began in which Julian intended on retrieving roman cities previously taken over by the Sassanids during Constantius II reign.
He was successful until he was unable to retrieve the Persian capital and led his army back to safety. It was while the army was retreating that Julian was mortally wounded by a spear.