Domitia Longina (c. AD 53-55–c. AD 126-130) was a Roman empress and wife to the Roman emperor Domitian. She was the youngest daughter of the general and consul Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo. Domitia divorced her first husband, Lucius Aelius Lamia Plautius Aelianus in order to marry Domitian in AD 71. The marriage produced only one son, whose early death is believed to have been the cause of a temporary rift between Domitia and her husband in AD 83. She became the empress upon Domitian's accession in AD 81, and remained so until his assassination in AD 96. She is believed to have died sometime between AD 126 and AD 130.
|Empress consort of the Roman Empire|
|Tenure||14 September AD 81 – 18 September AD 96|
|Born||c. AD 50-55|
|Spouse||Lucius Aelius Plautius Lamia Aelianus|
|House||Flavian Dynasty (by marriage)|
|Father||Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo|
|Roman imperial dynasties|
|Vespasian||69 AD – 79 AD|
|Titus||79 AD – 81 AD|
|Domitian||81 AD – 96 AD|
Year of the Four Emperors
Born sometime between the years AD 50 and AD 55, Domitia Longina was the second daughter of Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo and Cassia Longina. Her maternal grandmother was Junia Lepida, a great-great-granddaughter of Augustus, the first Roman emperor and founder of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Her paternal aunt was the Roman empress Milonia Caesonia, wife of Caligula and mother to Julia Drusilla. Her elder sister, also named Domitia married the senator Lucius Annius Vinicianus (son-in-law of Cn. Domitius Corbulo). Their father, Corbulo was one of Rome's most esteemed citizens, both in the Roman Senate and the army. In addition to serving as consul under Caligula, he conducted military campaigns in Germania and Parthia under Claudius and Nero, respectively. However, his family was connected to the failed Pisonian conspiracy against Nero in AD 65, consequently leading to Corbulo's disgrace and suicide.
Following Nero's suicide on 9 June 68, the Roman Empire plunged into a year-long civil war known as the Year of the Four Emperors, which saw the successive rise and fall of the Emperors Galba, Otho and Vitellius. The crisis came to an end with the accession of Vespasian, who re-established peace in the Empire and founded the short-lived Flavian dynasty. In 71, Vespasian attempted to arrange a dynastic marriage between his youngest son Domitian, and the daughter of his eldest son Titus, Julia Flavia. By this time however, Domitian had already met and fallen in love with Domitia Longina, and managed to persuade Lamia to divorce her, so that Domitian could marry her himself. Despite its initial recklessness, the alliance was very prestigious for both families. The new marriage rehabilitated Corbulo's family, while serving the broader Flavian propaganda of the time, which sought to diminish Vespasian's political success under the less reputable emperors of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Instead connections to Claudius and Britannicus were emphasised, and Nero's victims, or those otherwise disadvantaged by him, rehabilitated.
During this time, Domitian's role in the Flavian government was largely ceremonial. While his elder brother Titus shared almost equal powers with his father, Domitian was left with honours but no responsibilities. This situation remained unchanged when Titus succeeded Vespasian as Emperor on 23 June 79, leading both ancient and modern authors to suggest a mutual animosity between the two brothers. In 80, Titus granted a suffect consulship to Domitia's former husband Aelius Lamia, according to Gsell as a personal insult against Domitian. On another occasion, when Titus urged Lamia to marry again, Lamia asked whether "he too was looking for a wife". In the same year, Domitia and Domitian's only attested son was born. It is not known what the boy's name was, but he died in childhood in 83.
After barely two years in office, Titus unexpectedly died of brain fever on 13 September 81. His last words were reported to have been: "I have made but one mistake". The contemporary historian Suetonius speculated on the possible involvement of Domitian in his brother's death, attributing his final words to a popular rumour of the time, which held that Titus had carried on an affair with Domitia Longina. However even he dismisses the story as highly unlikely.
On 14 September, the Roman Senate confirmed Domitian as Titus' successor, granting tribunician power, the office of Pontifex Maximus, and the titles of Augustus, and Pater Patriae. Consequently, Domitia Longina became Empress of Rome.
Shortly following his accession as Emperor, Domitian bestowed the honorific title of Augusta upon Domitia, while their late son was deified. Both appeared on Domitian's coinage during this time. Nevertheless, the marriage appears to have faced a significant crisis in 83. For reasons unknown, Domitian briefly exiled Domitia, and then soon recalled her, either out of love or amidst rumours he was carrying on a relationship with his niece Julia Flavia. According to Suetonius, Domitia was exiled because of an affair with a famous actor named Paris. When Domitian found out, he allegedly murdered Paris in the street, and promptly divorced his wife. Suetonius further adds that, once Domitia was exiled, Domitian took Julia as his mistress, who later died during a failed abortion.
Modern historians consider this highly implausible however, noting that many of these stories were propagated by hostile senatorial authors, who condemned Domitian as a tyrant after his death. Malicious rumours, such as those concerning Domitia's alleged infidelity, were eagerly repeated, and used to highlight the hypocrisy of a ruler publicly preaching a return to Augustan morals, while privately indulging in excesses and presiding over a corrupt court. Domitian did exile his wife, but Jones argues that most likely he did so for her failure to produce an heir. Nevertheless, rumours regarding Domitia's alleged misconduct with Paris circulated even in Domitian's time, and he did not take insults directed at his marriage lightly. Not long after his accession, Aelius Lamia was put to death for the joking remarks made earlier during the reign of Titus. In 93, a son of Helvidius Priscus was executed for having composed a farce satirizing Domitian's separation from his wife. Stories of Domitian's affair with Julia were likely an invention of post-Domitianic writers however.
By 84, Domitia had returned to the palace, where she lived for the remainder of Domitian's reign without incident. Little is known of Domitia's precise activities as Empress, or how much influence she wielded in Domitian's government, but it seems her role was largely limited to ceremonial appearances. From Suetonius, we know that she at least accompanied the Emperor to the theatre, while the Jewish writer Josephus speaks of benefits he received from her. She was also the owner of the Horti Domitiae.
On 18 September 96, Domitian was assassinated in a palace conspiracy organized by court officials. His body was carried away on a common bier, and unceremoniously cremated by his nurse Phyllis, who mingled the ashes with those of his niece Julia at the Temple of the gens Flavia. The same day, he was succeeded by his friend and advisor, Marcus Cocceius Nerva. Ancient sources have implicated Domitia in the conspiracy against Domitian, either by direct involvement, or advance awareness of the assassination. The historian Cassius Dio, writing more than a century after the assassination, claimed that Domitia chanced upon a list of courtiers Domitian intended to put to death, and passed the information to his chamberlain Parthenius. The story is most likely apocryphal however, with Herodian attributing a similar tale to the assassination of Commodus. According to Jones, the evidence suggests that Domitia remained devoted to Domitian, even after his death. Twenty-five years after her husband's assassination, and despite the fact that his memory had been damned by the Senate, she still referred to herself as "Domitia, wife of Domitian".
Sometime between 126 and 140, a temple dedicated to Domitia was erected in Gabii. She died peacefully sometime between 126-130 AD.
|Ancestors of Domitia Longina|
| Empress of Rome
Year 126 (CXXVI) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Verus and Ambibulus (or, less frequently, year 879 Ab urbe condita). The denomination 126 for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.AD 53
AD 53 (LIII) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Silanus and Antonius (or, less frequently, year 806 Ab urbe condita). The denomination AD 53 for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.AD 70
AD 70 (LXX) was a common year starting on Monday (link will display the full calendar) of the Julian calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Consulship of Vespasian and Titus (or, less frequently, year 823 Ab urbe condita). The denomination AD 70 for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.Domitia
Domitia is the name of women from the gens Domitius of Ancient Rome. Women from the gens include:
Domitia, wife of Quintus Lutatius Catulus (consul 102 BC) and mother of Quintus Lutatius Catulus (Capitolinus) (consul 78 BC)
Domitia Lepida the Elder or Domitia Lepida Major, aunt of Emperor Nero
Domitia Lepida the Younger, sister of the following, mother of the Roman Empress Valeria Messalina
Domitia, eldest daughter of Roman general Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo and sister to Roman Empress Domitia Longina
Domitia Longina, wife of Roman Emperor Domitian
Domitia Decidiana, wife of Roman General Gnaeus Julius Agricola and mother-in-law to historian Tacitus
Domitia Lucilla, mother and maternal grandmother of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius
Domitia Paulina, Aelia Domitia Paulina, female relatives of Roman Emperor Hadrian
Domitia Faustina, a short-lived daughter of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius and Roman Empress Faustina the Younger
Saint Domitia, a saint of Orthodox ChristianityDomitia (daughter of Cn. Domitius Corbulo)
Domitia was a Roman noble woman who lived in the 1st century. She was the eldest daughter to Roman Consul and General Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo and Cassia Longina. Her younger sister was Domitia Longina, a future Roman Empress who would marry the future Roman Emperor Domitian. Her paternal aunt was Roman Empress Milonia Caesonia.
Domitia was born sometime towards the middle of the first century. By 63, she had married the Roman Senator Lucius Annius Vinicianus.
In the year 63 Vinicianus acted as a military commander under his father-in-law in the Euphrates. In 66, there was a conspiracy that involved Vinicianus and his father-in-law to overthrow the Roman Emperor Nero. Vinicianus refused to speak nor prove his innocence to the Emperor and committed suicide in 67.
The Roman Historian Suetonius makes a reference to their son in the account of Domitian which is mentioned in clause 12. The year that Domitia died is unknown.Domitian
Domitian (; Latin: Titus Flavius Caesar Domitianus Augustus; 24 October 51 – 18 September 96 AD) was Roman emperor from 81 to 96. He was the younger brother of Titus and the son of Vespasian, his two predecessors on the throne, and the last member of the Flavian dynasty. During his reign, the authoritarian nature of his rule put him at sharp odds with the senate, whose powers he drastically curtailed.
Domitian had a minor and largely ceremonial role during the reigns of his father and brother. After the death of his brother, Domitian was declared emperor by the Praetorian Guard. His 15-year reign was the longest since that of Tiberius. As emperor, Domitian strengthened the economy by revaluing the Roman coinage, expanded the border defenses of the empire, and initiated a massive building program to restore the damaged city of Rome. Significant wars were fought in Britain, where his general Agricola attempted to conquer Caledonia (Scotland), and in Dacia, where Domitian was unable to procure a decisive victory against king Decebalus. Domitian's government exhibited strong authoritarian characteristics; he saw himself as the new Augustus, an enlightened despot destined to guide the Roman Empire into a new era of brilliance. Religious, military, and cultural propaganda fostered a cult of personality, and by nominating himself perpetual censor, he sought to control public and private morals. As a consequence, Domitian was popular with the people and army, but considered a tyrant by members of the Roman Senate.
Domitian's reign came to an end in 96 when he was assassinated by court officials. He was succeeded the same day by his advisor Nerva. After his death, Domitian's memory was condemned to oblivion by the Roman Senate, while senatorial authors such as Tacitus, Pliny the Younger, and Suetonius propagated the view of Domitian as a cruel and paranoid tyrant. Modern revisionists instead have characterized Domitian as a ruthless but efficient autocrat whose cultural, economic, and political programs provided the foundation of the peaceful second century.Family tree of the Roman emperors
This is a family tree of the Roman Emperors, showing only the relationships between the emperors.Gaius Cassius Longinus (consul AD 30)
Gaius Cassius Longinus was an Ancient Roman jurist and politician from the first century AD. A grandnephew of Servius Sulpicius Rufus, he was also a descendant, great grandson or nephew, of Gaius Cassius Longinus, one of Caesar's assassins. Longinus was suffect consul of the second half of the year 30 as the colleague of Lucius Naevius Surdinus.Cassius, a pupil of Sabinus, was head of the legal school called the Sabinians or Cassinians. His principal works are the libri (commentarii) iuris civilis in at least ten volumes, which only survive in quotes by later authors such as Iavolenus. After completing his term as suffect consul, Longinus served as proconsular governor of Asia minor in 40–41, then governor of the imperial province of Syria in 41-49. He was exiled by Nero to Sardinia in 65, but returned to Rome when Vespasian acceded to the purple.Tacitus includes a speech of Cassius on the debate that arose when there had been mass protests in Rome when 400 innocent slaves were to be executed because they belonged to the household of a master who had been murdered by his slave. It is open to question as to what extent the speech we have reflected what Cassius actually said, and to what extent it represents Tacitus's views, though it is at least possible that Tacitus made use of the Senate's records; the hard line expressed is in line with what we know about Cassius. In the speech Cassius conceded that the execution would be unjust. He also conceded it violated the rights of private interests but justified it on the grounds of the public good. The private interests that concerned him did not include any right to life for the slaves but the loss to the heirs. Modern commentators side with those who protested at the time in regarding the law as inherently unjust.He married Junia Lepida, a descendant of Augustus.
Lepida bore Longinus two children:
Cassia Longina (born c. AD 35), married to the general Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo, by whom she had two daughters: Domitia and Domitia Longina
Cassius Lepidus (born c. AD 55), married to an unknown woman by whom he had a daughter, Cassia Lepida (born c. AD 80). She married Gaius Julius Alexander Berenicianus (born c. AD 80), Consul in AD 116 and Proconsul Asiae in AD 132, and had a daughter, Julia Cassia AlexandraGaleria Fundana
Galeria Fundana (c. 40 – aft. 69) was a Roman empress of the 1st century CE, the second wife of Roman emperor Vitellius.Horti Domitiae
The Horti Domitiae were a set of private gardens in ancient Rome, belonging to Domitia Longina, wife of the emperor Domitian. They were sited on the right bank of the river Tiber. A few years later the Mausoleum of Hadrian was built in the same area. The gardens were still known by this name in the time of Aurelian.Julia Flavia
Julia Flavia (8 September 64 – 91) was the daughter and only child to Roman Emperor Titus from his second marriage to the well-connected Marcia Furnilla.Junia Lepida
Junia Lepida (Classical Latin: IVNIA•LEPIDA, PIR2 I 861, ca AD 18 - 65) was a Roman noblewoman who lived during the Roman Empire in the 1st century AD. Lepida was the second born daughter and was among the children born of Aemilia Lepida and Marcus Junius Silanus Torquatus, a member of the Junii Silani, a family of Ancient Rome. Her maternal grandparents were Julia the Younger (granddaughter of the emperor Augustus) and Lucius Aemilius Paullus (a consul). Through her maternal grandparents she was a descendant of the Roman emperor Augustus, the noblewoman Scribonia, the statesman Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa and the consul Lucius Aemilius Lepidus Paullus (brother of the triumvir Marcus Aemilius Lepidus).
She married Gaius Cassius Longinus (c. 13 BC - AD 69). Cassius was a person with remarkable ancestral wealth. They raised their nephew Lucius Junius Silanus Torquatus, whose father was murdered by Empress Agrippina the Younger. In AD 66, Lepida's husband and nephew were expelled from Rome by Emperor Nero for being a part in Gaius Calpurnius Piso's conspiracy. Cassius was deported to Sardinia. Lepida was accused by Nero of black magic and incest with her nephew. Her fate afterwards is not known. Lepida's husband was Praefectus urbi Romae ca AD 27, Consul suffectus in AD 30, Proconsul Asiae in 40 or 41, Legatus Augusti pro praetore provinciae Syriae between ca AD 45 and 49 and was later rehabilitated and recalled from exile by Vespasian.
Lepida bore Longinus two children:
Cassia Longina (born c. AD 35), married to Roman General Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo by whom she had two daughters Domitia and Domitia Longina
Cassius Lepidus (born c. AD 55), married to an unknown woman by whom he had a daughter Cassia Lepida (born c. AD 80). She married Gaius Julius Alexander Berenicianus (born c. AD 80), Consul in AD 116 and Proconsul Asiae in AD 132, and had a daughter - Julia Cassia AlexandraList of geological features on Vesta
This is a list of named geological features, of various kinds, on 4 Vesta.Lucius Aelius Lamia (consul 3)
For Lamia's grand-son by the same name, see Domitia Longina.Lucius Aelius Lamia (before 43 BCE – 33 CE) was the son of Lucius Aelius Lamia, a loyal partisan of Cicero who was made praetor in 43 BCE and died before completing his term. He was consul in the year 3 CE and afterwards served as governor of Germania, Pannonia and Africa. In 22 CE he was appointed imperial legate to Syria by Tiberius but was detained in Rome and never traveled to Syria in person. In the last year of his life, 33 CE, he served as praefectus urbi.Lamia's connection with the prominent Aelii Tuberones (including Aelia Paetina, second wife of the emperor Claudius) is not known. It is unlikely his father was the same man as Lucius Aelius Tubero, the possible great grandfather of Aelia Paetina.Lucius Aelius Lamia Plautius Aelianus
Lucius Aelius Lamia Plautius Aelianus (c. 45 - 81/96) was a Roman senator, described by Brian W. Jones as "the most eminent of the consular victims" of Domitian. Juvenal used his family as representative of Domitian's most noble victims; Lamia was consul suffect in 80 with three different colleagues: Aulus Didius Gallus Fabricius Veiento, Quintus Aurelius Pactumeius Fronto, and Gaius Marius Marcellus Octavius Publius Cluvius Rufus.A number of scholars have concluded that Lamia was most likely a son of Tiberius Plautius Silvanus Aelianus. He married Domitia Longina, the daughter of the general Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo and Cassia Longina. Their son is thought to have been Lucius Fundanius Lamia Aelianus, born before Domitian forced them to divorce.Domitia was seduced by Domitian while his father Vespasian was still in Roman Egypt (AD 70); Domitian afterwards forced Lamia to divorce her so he could have her for himself. Despite this, Lamia retained his sense of humor. Jones suspects it was his sense of humor, in the form of harmless jokes directed at the emperor, that led to his execution. Domitian was unable to handle personal criticism of any sort, and there was ample precedent for the laws of treason to be applied to writings of this kind.Lucius Annius Vinicianus (son-in-law of Cn. Domitius Corbulo)
Lucius Annius Vinicianus (36 - 66) was a Roman senator during the later part of the first century. He is best known from a failed plot to overthrow Nero in 62 CE.Milonia Caesonia
Milonia Caesonia (d. AD 41) was a Roman empress, the fourth and last wife of the emperor Caligula.Paris (actor under Domitian)
Paris was an actor in Rome in the 1st century AD.
Born in Egypt, he came to Rome in the reign of Domitian, where his skills as a pantomimus won him popular favour, noblewomen as lovers, influence within the imperial court and the power to promote his favourites within the court. That influence would seem to be demonstrated by the story of Juvenal's banishment to Egypt for attacking Paris.His affair with Domitian's wife Domitia Longina led Domitian to divorce her and murder Paris, and even to kill one of Paris' pupils merely for looking like Paris and ordinary people for mourning Paris' death by placing flowers and perfumes on the site where he was murdered.Martial composed Epigram xi.13 in Paris' honour, calling him sales Nili (wit of the Nile) and Romani decus et dolor theatri (ornament and grief of the Roman theatre-world). He is also recorded in Juv. vi.82-87 and was the subject of Philip Massinger's play The Roman Actor.Vistilia
Vistilia was a Roman woman who lived in the 1st century and came from a family that held the praetorship. She was known by her contemporaries for having seven children by six different husbands; Pliny the Elder added the fact most of the pregnancies were remarkably brief.Her brother was probably Sextus Vistilius, a former praetor, who was a close friend to the Roman General Nero Claudius Drusus, the younger brother to Roman Emperor Tiberius. In the opinion of Frederik Juliaan Vervaet, this made Vistilia "an extremely valuable bride, whose connections offered her husbands and their joint children fantastic prospects. Four marriages, three clarissimi mariti before 10 BC." But then Drusus died of a fall from his horse in 9 BC, and as the daughter of a praetorian family "marriage to Vistilia, from a praetorian family, suddenly became a lot less interesting for ambitious and high-ranking senators descending from noble families."But then Sextus was admitted to the cohors amicorum, and her value as a bride was restored; she married twice more. When Tiberius charged Sextus for criticizing the morals of his great-nephew, Caligula, he excluded Sextus from his company. By the time Sextus committed suicide in 32, Vervaet notes "he had long outlived his utility."Vistilia was married six times and had seven children. Ronald Syme identifies the children as follows, with his dates of birth:
Glitius, born c. 15 BC, the father of Publius Glitius Gallus, consul;
Publius Pomponius Secundus, born c. 14 BC, tragedian and consul suffectus in 44;
Quintus Pomponius Secundus, born c. 12 BC, consul suffectus in 41;
Orfitus, born c. 11 BC, father of Servius Cornelius Scipio Salvidienus Orfitus, consul in 51; and
Publius Suillius Rufus, born between 10 BC and 7 BC, consul in 41, and father of Marcus Suillius Nerullinus consul in 50;
Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo, born between 4 BC and AD 1, Roman general and consul in 39, who was the father to Roman Empress Domitia Longina; and
Milonia Caesonia, born AD 5, the most famous, who became a Roman Empress and fourth wife to Roman Emperor Caligula.