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THE WOMEN OF THE CESARS

THIRD PAPER: THE DAUGHTERS OF AGRIPPA

BY GUGLIELMO FERRERO

IBERIUS1 had now broken with admiring the descendants of the great fam

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public opinion, he was hated by the majority of the senate. At Rhodes he soon found himself, therefore, in the awkward position of one who through a false move has played into the hands of his enemies and sees no way of recovering his position. It had been easy to leave Rome; to reënter it was difficult, and in all probability his fortune would have been forever compromised, and he would never have become emperor, had it not been for the fact that in the midst of this general defection two women remained faithful. They were his mother, Livia, and his sister-in-law, Antonia, the widow of that brother Drusus who, dying in his youth, had carried to his grave the hopes of Rome.

Antonia was the daughter of the emperor's sister Octavia and of Mark Antony, the famous triumvir whose name remains forever linked in story with that of Cleopatra. This daughter of Antony was certainly the noblest and the gentlest of all the women who appear in the lugubrious and tragic history of the family of the Cæsars. Serious, modest, and even-tempered, she was likewise endowed with beauty and virtue, and she brought into the family and into its struggles a spirit of concord, serenity of mind, and sweet reasonableness, though they could not always prevail against the violent passions and clashing interests of those about her. As long as Drusus lived, Drusus and Antonia had been for the Romans the model of the devoted pair of lovers, and their tender affection had become proverbial; yet the Roman multitude, always given to

the beauty, the virtue, the sweetness, the modesty, and the reserve of Antonia. After the death of Drusus, she did not wish to marry again, even though the lex de maritandis ordinibus made it a duty. "Young and beautiful," wrote Valerius Maximus, "she withdrew to a life of retirement in the company of Livia, and the same bed which had seen the death of the youthful husband saw his faithful spouse grow old in an austere widowhood." Augustus and the people were so touched by this supreme proof of fidelity to the memory of the ever-cherished husband that by the common consent of public opinion she was relieved of the necessity of remarrying; and Augustus himself, who had always carefully watched over the observance of the marital law in his own family, did not dare insist. Whether living at her villa of Bauli, where she spent the larger part of her year, or at Rome, the beautiful widow gave her attention to the bringing up of her three children, Germanicus, Livilla, and Claudius. Ever since the death of Octavia, she had worshiped Livia as a mother and lived in the closest intimacy with her, and, withdrawn from public life, she attempted now to bring a spirit of peace into the torn and tragic family.

Antonia was very friendly with Tiberius, who, on his side, felt the deepest sympathy and respect for his beautiful and virtuous sister-in-law. It cannot be doubted, therefore, that in this crisis Antonia, who was bound to Livia by many ties, must have taken sides for Livia's son Tiberius. But Antonia was too gentle

1 In the June paper on Tiberius's mother, Livia, and his step-sister, Julia (the daughter of Augustus by a former wife), Professor Ferrero described the intrigues of these two women, the first for the advancement of Tiberius

to the place of heir of Augustus, and the second to secure the place for her son Caius Cæsar.

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and mild to lead a faction in the struggle which during these years began between the friends and the enemies of Tiberius, and that rôle was assumed by Livia, who possessed more strength and more authority. The situation grew worse and worse. Public opinion steadily became more hostile to Tiberius and more favorable to Julia and her elder son, and it was not long before they wished to give to her younger son, Lucius, the same honors which had already been bestowed upon his brother Caius. Private interest soon allied itself with the hatred and rancor against Tiberius; and scarcely had he departed when the senate increased the appropriation for public supplies and public games. All those who profited by these appropriations were naturally interested in preventing the return of Tiberius, who was notorious for his opposition to all useless expenditures. Any measure, however dishonest, therefore considered proper, provided only it helped to ruin Tiberius;

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of a terrible scandal in the very person of Julia. The lex Julia de adulteriis, framed by Augustus in the year 18, authorized any citizen to denounce an unfaithful wife before the judges, if the husband or father should refuse to make the accusation. This law, which was binding upon all Roman citizens, was therefore applicable even to the daughter of Augustus, the widow of Agrippa, the mother of Caius and Lucius Cæsar, those two youths in whom were

From the statue now in the Vatican, Rome MARK ANTONY

and his enemies had recourse to every art and calumny, among other things actually accusing him of conspiracies against Augustus. Even for a woman as able and energetic as Livia it was an arduous task to struggle against the inclinations of Augustus, against public opinion, against the majority of the senate, against private interest, and against Julia and her friends. Indeed, four years passed during which the situation of Tiberius and his party grew steadily worse, while the party of Julia increased in power.

Finally the party of Tiberius resolved to attempt a startlingly bold move. They decided to cripple the opposition by means

centered the hopes of the republic. She had violated the lex Julia and

she had escaped the penalties which had been visited on many other ladies of the aristocracy only because no one had dared to call down this scandal upon the first family of the empire. The party of Tiberius, protected and guided by Livia, at last hazarded this step.

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It is impossible to say what part Livia played in this terrible tragedy. It is certain that either she or some other influential personage succeeded in gaining possession of the proofs of Julia's guilt and brought them to Augustus, threatening to lay them before the pretor and to institute proceedings if he did not discharge his duty. Augustus found himself constrained to apply to himself his own terrible law. He himself had decreed that if the husband, as was then the case of Tiberius, could not accuse a faithless woman, the father must do so. It was his law, and he had to bow to it in order to avoid scandals and worse consequences. He exiled Julia to the little island of Pandataria, and at the age of thirty-seven, the brilliant, pleasing, and voluptuous young woman who had dazzled Rome for many years was compelled to disappear from the me

tropolis forever and retire to an existence on a barren island. She was cut off by the implacable hatred of a hostile party and by the inexorable cruelty of a law framed by her own father!

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The exile of Julia marks the moment when the fortunes of Tiberius and Livia, which had been steadily losing ground for four years, began to revive, though not so rapidly as Livia and Tiberius had probably expected. Julia preserved, even in her misfortune, many faithful friends and a great popularity. For a long time popular demonstrations were held in her favor at Rome, and many busied themselves ciously to obtain her pardon from Augustus, all of which goes to prove that the horrible infamies which were spread about her were the inventions of enemies. Julia had broken the lex Julia,-so much is certain, but even if she had been guilty of an unfortunate act, she was not a monster, as her enemies wished to have it believed. She was a beautiful woman, as there had been before, as

Caius and Lucius Cæsar, Julia's two youthful sons, of whom Augustus was very fond, were the principal instruments with which the enemies of Tiberius fought against the influence of Livia over Augustus. Every effort was made to sow hatred and distrust between the two youths and Tiberius, to the end that it might become impossible to have them collaborate with him in the government of the empire, and that the presence of Julia's sons should of necessity exclude that of her husband. A further ally was

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From a photograph. Copyright by Anderson BUST OF TIBERIUS IN THE MUSEO NAZIONALE, NAPLES

there are now, and as there will be hereafter, touched with human vices and with human virtues.

As a matter of fact, her party, after it had recovered from the terrible shock of the scandal, quickly reorganized. Firm in its intention of having Julia pardoned, it took up the struggle again, and tried as far as it could to hinder Tiberius from returning to Rome and again taking part in political life, knowing well that if the husband once set foot in Rome, all hope of Julia's return would be lost. Only one of them could reënter Rome. It was either Tiberius or Julia; and more furiously than ever the struggle between the two parties was waged about Augustus.

soon found in the person of another child of Julia and Agrippa, the daughter who has come down into history under the name of the Younger Julia. Augustus had conceived as great a love for her as for

the two sons, and there was no doubt that she would aid with every means in her power the party averse to Tiberius; for her mother's instincts of liberty, luxury, and pleasure were also inherent in her. Married to L. Æmilius Paulus, the son of one of the greatest Roman families, she

had early assumed in Rome a position which made her, like her mother, the antithesis of Livia. She, too, gathered about her, as the elder Julia had done, a court of elegant youths, men of letters, and poets,-Ovid was of the number,and with this group she hoped to be able to hold the balance of power in the government against that coterie of aged senators who paid court to Livia. She, too, took advantage of the good-will of her grandfather, just as her mother had done, and in the shadow of his protection she displayed an extravagance which the laws did not permit, but which, on this account, was all the more admired by the enemies of the old Roman puritanism. As though

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STATUE, SUPPOSED TO BE OF ANTONIA, DAUGHTER OF MARK
ANTONY AND OCTAVIA, AND MOTHER OF GERMANICUS,
IN THE UFFIZI GALLERY, FLORENCE

her three children, Caius, Lucius, and Julia the Younger, constituted in Rome an alliance which was sufficiently powerful to contest every inch of ground with the party of Livia; for they had public opinion in their favor, they enjoyed the support of the senate, and they played upon the weakness of Augustus. In the year 2 A.D., after four years of exhaustive efforts spent in struggle and intrigue, all that Livia had been able to obtain was the

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nances were disordered, the army was disorganized, and the frontiers were threatened, for revolt was raising its head in Gaul, in Pannonia, and especially in Germany. Every day the situation seemed to demand the hand of Tiberius, who, now in the prime of life, was recognized as one of the leading administrators and the first general of the empire. But, for all Livia's insistence, Augustus refused to call Tiberius back into the government. The Julii

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