Poetoviona was the most important Roman city on the territory of today’s Slovenia. Originally a Celtic centre, it was occupied in the Augustan period by the Augustus Eight Legion that remained there for almost half of the century. One of the most extraordinary documents, not illustrating only the process of Romanization, but presenting to us the life and fate of a soldier that died 2000 years ago is the grave monument of Marcus Petronius Classicus.
Born in today’s region of Abruzzi in Italy, he was among the first members of the Roman military post stationed in Poetoviona. When he died his brother, also a member of the same legion, built a grave monument and transferred his bones to their homeland. His monument is decorated with all the recognitions of his service – topped by the centurion’s helmet with a transverse plume are depicted his centurions stick and shin-guards. Moreover, there are his decorations – an oak crown as well as armillae and phalerae on his helmet indicating that Marcus was an often decorated and admired military officer.