Te'tricus, C. Pesu'vius
one of the thirty tyrants enumerated by Trebellius Pollio [AUREOLUS], was the last of the pretenders who ruled Gaul during its temporary separation from the empire under Gallienus and his successor.
He was of noble descent, a senator, a consular, and praefect of Aquitania at the period when, after the death of Postumus, of Laelianus, of Victorinus, and of Marius, in rapid succession, the supreme power devolved on the popular Victoria, who, feeling unable or unwilling to undertake a task so onerous and so fraught with danger, persuaded the soldiers to accept of her kinsman Tetricus as their ruler, and he was accordingly invested with the purple at Bordeaux, in A. D. 267. Claudius Gothicus found his attention and resources so fully occupied by the wild tribes on the Danube and the coasts of the Euxine, that he considered it impolitic to commence hostilities against a chief who maintained tranquillity and order throughout the limits of France and Spain, and kept at bay the barbarians on the Rhenish frontier; indeed, we may conclude from medals, that he not merely tolerated, but acknowledged the authority of his rival. Upon the accession of Aurelian, however, Tetricus, if we can believe the concurring testimony of Pollio, Victor, and Eutropius, harassed and alarmed by the insolence and factious spirit of his troops, privately invited the new sovereign to relieve him from a load which he found intolerable, and betrayed his army to defeat at the great battle of Chalons. [AURELIANUS.] It is certain that although Tetricus, along with his son, in the guise of captives, graced the triumph of the conqueror, he was immediately afterwards treated with the greatest distinction, appointed corrector of the whole of Italy, and even addressed by Aurelian as comrade, colleague, and imperator. Retiring sub sequently into private life, he died at a very ad vanced age.
(Every circumstance connected with the history of Tetricus has been collected and arranged, with great industry and learning, by De Boze. in a dissertation contained in the Mémoires de l'Academie de Sciences et Belles Lettres,
vol. xxvi.; p. 504; see Trebell. Poll. Trig. Tyrann.
xxiii.; Aurel. Vict. de Caes.
xxxv.; Eutrop. 9.9
; Zonar. 12.27