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THE LIVES OF THE CAESARS

BOOK V

THE DEIFIED CLAUDIUS

a

I. The father of Claudius Caesar, Drusus, who at first had the forename Decimus and later that of Nero, was born of Livia within three months after 38 B.C. her marriage to Augustus a (for she was with child at the time) and there was a suspicion that he was begotten by his stepfather in adulterous intercourse. Certain it is that this verse at once became current : “ In three months' time come children to the great."

This Drusus, while holding the offices of quaestor and praetor, was in charge of the war in Raetia and later of that in Germany. He was the first of Roman 15 B.C. generals to sail the northern Ocean, and beyond the Rhine with prodigious labour he constructed the 12-11 B.C. huge canals which to this very day are called by his name. Even after he had defeated the enemy in many battles and driven them far into the wilds of the interior, he did not cease his pursuit until the apparition of a barbarian woman of greater than

B 2

3 ultra sermone Latino prohibuisset. Quas obres

ovandi ius et triumphalia ornamenta percepit; ac post praeturam confestim inito consulatu atque expeditione repetita supremum diem morbo obiit in aestivis castris, quae ex eo Scelerata sunt appellata. Corpus eius per municipiorum coloniarumque primores suscipientibus obviis scribarum decuriis ad urbem devectum sepultumque est in campo Martio. Ceterum exercitus honorarium ei tumulum excitavit, circa quem deinceps stato die quotannis miles decurreret Galliarumque civitates publice supplicarent. Praeterea senatus inter alia complura marmoreum arcum cum

tropaeis via Appia decrevit et Germanici cognomen 4 ipsi posterisque eius. Fuisse autem creditur non minus gloriosi quạm civilis animi; nam

ex hoste super victorias opima quoque spolia captasse summoque saepius discrimine duces Germanorum tota acie insectatus; nec dissimulasse umquam pristinum se rei p. statum, quandoque posset, restituturum. Unde existimo nonnullos tradere ausos, suspectum eum Augusto revocatumque ex provincia et quia cunctaretur, interceptum veneno. Quod equidem magis

a See Aug. xxii. 6 Cf. Tib. vii. 3.

• The reference is probably to the scribae quaestorii, the quaestor's clerks, who were the most important of the attendants upon the magistrates. They formed a guild composed of six decuriae, or divisions of ten, presided over by six officers called sex primi curatorum.

d A decursus or decursio. Dio, 56. 42, describes the one about the funeral pyre of Augustus. After running around it in full armour, the soldiers cast into the fire the military prizes which they had received from the emperor; cf. Jul. Ixxxiv. 4.

human size, speaking in the Latin tongue, forbade him to push his victory further. For these exploits he received the honour of an ovation a with the triumphal regalia ; and immediately after his praetorship he became consul and resumed his campaign, but died in his summer camp, which for that reason 9 B.C. was given the name of “Accursed.” The body was carried by the leading men of the free towns and colonies to Rome, where it was met and received by the decuries of scribes,© and buried in the campus Martius. But the army reared a monument in his honour, about which the soldiers should make a ceremonial run d each year

thereafter on a stated day, which the cities of Gaul were to observe with prayers and sacrifices.

The senate, in addition to many other honours, voted him a marble arch adorned with trophies on the Appian Way, and the

Germanicus for himself and his descendants. It is the general belief that he was as eager for glory as he was democratice by nature ; for in addition to victories over the enemy he greatly desired to win the “noble trophies,”f often pursuing the leaders of the Germans all over the field at great personal risk; and he made no secret of his intention of restoring the old-time form of government, whenever he should have the power. It is because of this, I think, that some have made bold to write that he was an object of suspicion to Augustus; that the emperor recalled him from his province, and when he did not obey at once, took him off by poison. This

surname

e See note on Tib. xxvi. l. 1 The spolia opima were the armour of the leader of the enemy, taken from him in hand-to-hand combat by a Roman general.

ne praetermitterem rettuli, quam quia verum aut veri simile putem, cum Augustus tanto opere et vivum dilexerit, ut coheredem semper filiis instituerit, sicut quondam in senatu professus est, et defunctum ita pro contione laudaverit, ut deos precatus sit, similes ei Caesares suos facerent sibique tam honestum quandoque exitum darent quam illi dedissent. Nec contentus elogium tumulo eius versibus a se compositis insculpsisse, etiam vitae memoriam prosa

oratione composuit. 6 Ex Antonia minore complures quidem liberos tulit,

verum tres omnino reliquit: Germanicum, Livillam, Claudium.

II. Claudius natus est Iullo 1 Antonio Fabio Africano conss. Kal. Aug. Luguduni eo ipso die quo primum ara ibi Augusto dedicata est, appellatusque Tiberius Claudius Drusus. Mox fratre maiore in Iuliam familiam adoptato Germanici cognomen assumpsit. Infans autem relictus a patre ac per omne fere pueritiae atque adulescentiae tempus variis et tenacibus morbis conflictatus est, adeo ut animo simul et corpore hebetato ne progressa quidem

aetate ulli publico privatoque muneri habilis existi2 maretur. Diu atque etiam post tutelam receptam

alieni arbitrii et sub paedagogo fuit; quem barbarum et olim superiumentarium ex industria sibi appositum,

1 Iullo, Ihm ; Iulio, 2 ; Iulo, Pulmann.

a C. and L. Caesar; see Tib. xxiii. and Index.

o That is, on the anniversary of the dedication, which was in 12 B.C.

c That is, the age at which one was ordinarily freed from tutelage. The usual formula is in suam tutelam venire, Cic. De Orat. i. 39. 180.

I have mentioned, rather not to pass it by, than that
I think it true or even probable; for as a matter of
fact Augustus loved him so dearly while he lived that
he always named him joint-heir along with his sons,
as he once declared in the senate ; and when he was
dead, he eulogized him warmly before the people,
praying the gods to make his Caesars a like Drusus,
and to grant him, when his time came, as glorious a
death as they had given that hero. And not content
with carving a laudatory inscription on his tomb in
verses of his own composition, Augustus also wrote a
memoir of his life in prose.

Drusus had several children by the younger
Antonia, but was survived by only three, Germanicus,
Livilla, and Claudius.
II. Claudius was born at Lugdunum on

the Aug. 1,

10 B.C. Kalends of August in the consulship of Tullus Antonius and Fabius Africanus, the very day when an altar was first dedicated to Augustus in that town, and he received the name of Tiberius Claudius Drusus. Later, on the adoption of his elder brother into the Julian family, he took the surname Germanicus. He lost his father when he was still an infant, and throughout almost the whole course of his childhood and youth he suffered so severely from various obstinate disorders that the vigour of both his mind and his body was dulled, and even when he reached the proper age he was not thought capable of any public or private business. For a long time, even after he reached the age of independence, he was in a state of pupillage and under a guardian, of whom he himself makes complaint in a book of his, saying that he was a barbarian and a former chief of muleteers, put in charge of him for the express

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