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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.
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.
On 20 November 284, the army of the east gathered on a hill 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) outside Nicomedia.
Galerius, aided by Diocletian, campaigned successfully against Sassanid Persia, the empire's traditional enemy. Diocletian led the subsequent negotiations and achieved a lasting and favorable peace.He appointed fellow officer Maximian as Augustus, co-emperor, in 286.Diocletian delegated further on 1 March 293, appointing Galerius and Constantius as Caesars, junior co-emperors.In spite of these failures and challenges, Diocletian's reforms fundamentally changed the structure of Roman imperial government and helped stabilize the empire economically and militarily, enabling the empire to remain essentially intact for another 150 years despite being near the brink of collapse in Diocletian's youth.Weakened by illness, Diocletian left the imperial office on 1 May 305, and became the first Roman emperor to abdicate the position voluntarily.