Aurelian was Roman emperor from 270 to 275 CE. He was one of the so-called Barracks Emperors, chosen by the Roman army during the turbulent period known as the Crisis of the Third Century (235-284 CE). Besides victories against various invading tribes, he successfully restored the Roman Empire by bringing the breakaway territories of the Gallic Empire and Palmyra back under Roman control, which earned him the title restitutor orbis ('Restorer of the World'). In order to defend Rome, he ordered the construction of the Aurelian Walls around the city, many parts of which are remarkably well-preserved thanks to their continued use as defensive structures well into the 19th century CE.

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