Political map of Europe & the Mediterranean 16 December 69 AD (Year of the Four Emperors: Vespasian): Following the Second Battle of Bedriacum (October 69), Vitellian (Vitellius) resistance in northern Italy collapsed, persuading Gaul, Spain, and Britain to declare for Vespasian. Vespasian’s supporters—known as Flavians for Vespasian’s family name—then marched on Rome, capturing it in the first battle for the city since Sulla (in 82 BC). On 21 December the Senate (Roman Senate) proclaimed Vespasian the new emperor, marking the beginning of the Flavian dynasty.