Ausonius, Decimus Magnus, the son of a senator at Burdigala (Bordeaux), was born in 309 A.D. Distinguished as a teacher of rhetoric he filled the post of tutor to the Emperor Gratian, and was subsequently made prefect of Latium, Libya, and Gaul, and proconsul of Asia. Ten or twelve years before his death, which occurred in 395, he retired to a country house near his native town and gave himself up to poetry in the form of epigrams, epistles, and idylls. He had not much of the divine afflatus, but he wrote with some degree of scholarly elegance and wit, though he was monotonous, affected, and occasionally puerile. His Parentalia, Idyl on the Moselle, and Crucifixion of Cupid are the best of his productions. He was apparently a Christian, but his whole nature was cast in a Pagan mould.