Under the Roman Empire, the city was renamed Ulpia Augusta Traiana in honour of emperor Trajan. The city grew to its largest extent under Marcus Aurelius (161-180) and became the second most important city in the Roman province of Thrace after Philippopolis (Trimontium). Its status and importance is evidenced by the visits of several emperors including Septimius Severus (193-211), Caracalla (211-217), and Diocletian (294-305).
The Battle of Beroe was fought near the city in 250 resulting in a Gothic Victory. It was probably after this event that the city walls were doubled like other cities in the region (e.g. Diocletianopolis, Serdica).
In the 2nd-3rd century the city had its own coin mint showing its importance.
In 377, in the Gothic War (376-382), the Goths marched on Beroe to attack the Roman general Frigiderus but his scouts detected the invaders and he promptly withdrew to Illyria. The city was destroyed but rebuilt by Justinian.
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