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He raised his sword to the light of the sun and swore an oath disclaiming responsibility for Numerian's death.He asserted that Aper had killed Numerian and concealed it.Augustus, the first Emperor, had nominally shared power with his colleagues, and more formal offices of Co-Emperor had existed from Marcus Aurelius on.Most recently, Emperor Carus and his sons had ruled together, albeit unsuccessfully. Born to a family of low status in Dalmatia, Diocletian rose through the ranks of the military to become Roman cavalry commander to the Emperor Carus.After the deaths of Carus and his son Numerian on campaign in Persia, Diocletian was proclaimed emperor.The title was also claimed by Carus' other surviving son, Carinus, but Diocletian defeated him in the Battle of the Margus.Diocletian's reign stabilized the empire and marks the end of the Crisis of the Third Century.
He eventually made his way to northern Italy and made an imperial government, but it is not known whether he visited the city of Rome at this time.
The first time Diocletian's whereabouts are accurately established, in 282, he was made by the newly Emperor Carus commander of the Protectores domestici, the élite cavalry force directly attached to the Imperial household – a post that earned him the honor of a consulship in 283.
– left his sons Numerian and Carinus as the new Augusti.
On 20 November 284, the army of the east gathered on a hill 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) outside Nicomedia.
The army unanimously saluted Diocles as their new augustus, and he accepted the purple imperial vestments.
He defeated the Sarmatians and Carpi during several campaigns between 285 and 299, the Alamanni in 288, and usurpers in Egypt between 297 and 298.