Julia Drusilla


Julia Drusilla Famous memorial

Rome, Città Metropolitana di Roma Capitale, Lazio, Italy
Death 24 Jan 41 (aged 1–2)
Rome, Città Metropolitana di Roma Capitale, Lazio, Italy
Burial Rome, Città Metropolitana di Roma Capitale, Lazio, Italy
Memorial ID 119911035 View Source

Murder Victim. Daughter of Roman Emperor Gaius "Caligula" Germanicus and his fourth and last wife Milonia Caesonia. Known as Drusilla the Younger during her lifetime, she was an only child who was born not long after her father's marriage to her mother and was named after her late aunt and her father's favorite sister. Her father's hasty marriage to her mother can be attributed to her purported illegitimacy: should Caligula marry Caesonia, Drusilla would become his heir. The order of events suggests that he did not want to marry until a child of his had already been born, a child who would be the purpose of the union. According to the ancient historian Suetonius, Caligula considered Drusilla as his own child for no better reason than her savage temper. This was evidenced by the fact that even in her infancy, she would attack with her nails the face and eyes of the children at play with her. On January 24, 41, Drusilla and her parents were at the imperial palace complex on Palatine Hill in Rome. Caligula was addressing an acting troupe of young men during a series of games and dramatics held for the Divine Augustus when the Praetorian Guard, led by Cassius Chaerea, stormed the imperial complex as part of a conspiracy to assassinate Caligula and replace him with his uncle, Claudius. The cryptoporticus (underground corridor) where this event would have taken place was discovered beneath the imperial palaces on the Palatine Hill. By the time Caligula's loyal Germanic guard responded, the emperor was already dead. A few hours later, Caesonia was killed by Lupus, a tribune especially sent by Chaerea to murder the two remaining family members. Seeing this, Drusilla jumped upon her mother's assassin and bit and kicked him. This extreme display of temper ultimately prompted Lupus to murder Drusilla as well. Although other, more powerful motives caused the deaths of her parents, Drusilla's murder was only justified by the fact that she could have claimed the throne for her descendants or even for herself since she was Caligula's only legitimate child. No sculptures of Caesonia and Drusilla survive as all sculpted images of them were destroyed after their murder in hopes of making people forget they ever existed, a sort of damnatio memoriae. The only surviving image of Drusilla is through a coin issued by Herod Agrippa the Great which represents her as a small child sitting next to Victoria, the goddess of victory, with an inscription that reads "to Drusilla, daughter of Augustus" in Latin.

Bio courtesy of: Wikipedia

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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Pinoy Pride
  • Added: 6 Nov 2013
  • Find a Grave Memorial ID: 119911035
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Julia Drusilla (39–24 Jan 41), Find a Grave Memorial ID 119911035, citing Mausoleum of Augustus, Rome, Città Metropolitana di Roma Capitale, Lazio, Italy ; Maintained by Find a Grave .