no edit summary
[[File: Rich 3.jpg |200px|thumb|left| Statue of Trajan]]
After the death of Augustus, the Empire remained prosperous and Emperors such as Nero and Claudius were very wealthy. Of all the successors of the First Emperor, the only one who could rival his personal wealth was Emperor Trajan. He was one of the greatest Roman Emperors and a great military leader. He came to power after a palace coup ousted the cruel Domitian and he carried out a great many reforms. Trajan also improved the administration of taxes and the Imperial Treasury
and this much to reduce corruption and this helped to greatly improve his financial position <ref><ref> Carcopino, p. 118</ref>. Then he turned his attention to conquest of new territories. In two brutal wars, he conquered the Kingdom of Dacia. As a result, he had many captives that he sold as slaves and he made a fortune. Moreover, Dacia was rich in mines and Trajan earned a huge revenue from these. Trajan then sought to emulate Alexander the Great and he invaded the Parthian Empire. He effectively annexed the Western part of this Empire and turned them into Roman Provinces. Trajan plundered cities and enslaved many people and his treasury overflowed with gold and silver<ref> Bennett, Julian. Trajan: Optimus Princeps (London, Routledge, 2003), p 113</ref>. However, he became bogged down in a guerrilla war and much of his wealth was spent on financing the campaign in Parthia, in his later years. At one point he was undoubtedly one of the richest of all Roman Emperors. Trajan left the Imperial Treasury depleted and it took his successors many decades to restore Rome’s finances.
==Who was the richest man in the Ancient World?==
It is very hard to definitively state who was the richest man in Ancient Rome and Greece. This is because of a scarcity of records and no agreed way to measure individuals’ wealth. However, it is possible to estimate how rich these historical figures were. Trajan was very wealthy but much of it was transitory and spent in his failed attempt to conquer the entirety of Parthia. Crassus was the richest person in the Ancient Word who was not a ruler. Julius Caesar was fabulously wealthy and was probably the richest person who ever lived in the Roman Republic. Alexander the Great was also very rich and his enslavement of whole groups and war-loot made him the richest man in the world and possibly the richest who ever lived up to that point in time. However, it appears that Augustus, the man who established the Imperial system in Rome was probably the richest man in the Ancient World. This was because he controlled the Imperial Treasury and his careful management of the Roman budget. He was not extravagant and did not engage in needless wars and as a result, controlled a significant share of not only Rome’s wealthy but that of the entire Ancient World.