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Tiberius Chapter 53: Death of Agrippina[29 AD]
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When his daughter-in-law Agrippina was somewhat outspoken in her complaints after her husband's death, he [Note 1] took her by the hand and quoted a Greek verse meaning "Do you think a wrong is done you, dear daughter, if you are not empress?" After that he never deigned to hold any conversation with her. Indeed, after she showed fear of tasting an apple which he handed her at dinner, he even ceased to invite her to his table, alleging that he had been charged with an attempt to poison her; but as a matter of fact, the whole affair had been prearranged, that he should offer her the fruit to test her, and that she should refuse it as containing certain death. At last, falsely charging her with a desire to take refuge, now at the statue of Augustus and now with the armies, he exiled her to Pandataria, and when she loaded him with reproaches, he had her beaten by a centurion until one of her eyes was destroyed. Again, when she resolved to die of starvation, he had her mouth pried open and food crammed into it. Worst of all, when she persisted in her resolution and so perished, he assailed her memory with the basest slanders, persuading the Senate to add her birthday to the days of ill omen and actually taking credit to himself for not having had her strangled and her body cast out on the Stairs of Mourning. He even allowed a decree to be passed in recognition of this remarkable clemency, in which thanks were offered him and a golden gift was consecrated to Jupiter of the Capitol.
Note 1: Tiberius
Event: Death of Agrippina Maior
|Nurum Agrippinam post mariti mortem liberius quiddam questam manu apprehendit Graecoque uersu: "Si non dominaris," inquit, "filiola, iniuriam te accipere existimas?" Nec ullo mox sermone dignatus est. Quondam uero inter cenam porrecta a se poma gustare non ausam etiam uocare desiit, simulans ueneni se crimine accersi; cum praestructum utrumque consulto esset, ut et ipse temptandi gratia offerret et illa quasi certissimum exitium caueret. Nouissime calumniatus modo ad statuam Augusti modo ad exercitus confugere uelle, Pandatariam relegauit conuiciantique oculum per centurionem uerberibus excussit. rursus mori inedia destinanti per uim ore diducto infulciri cibum iussit. sed et perseuerantem atque ita absumptam criminosissime insectatus, cum diem quoque natalem eius inter nefastos referendum suasisset, imputauit etiam, quod non laqueo strangulatam in Gemonias abiecerit: proque tali clementia interponi decretum passus est, quo sibi gratiae agerentur et Capitolino Ioui donum ex auro sacraretur.