Antonia Minor 
- Born: 31 Jan 0036 B.C., Athens, Greece
- Marriage: Nero Claudius Drusus Germanicus  in 0016 B.C.
- Died: Oct 0037 at age 73
Julio-Claudian family tree
Antonia Minor (PIR2 A 885), also known as Antonia the Younger or simply Antonia (31 January 36 BCE-September/October 37CE) was a daughter of Roman politician Mark Antony and Octavia Minor , niece of emperor Augustus , and mother of future emperor Claudius .
Antonia is one of the most prominent Roman women. She is celebrated for her virtue and beauty. She was the youngest daughter to Octavia Minor and Mark Antony and was also the favorite niece of her mother's younger brother, Rome's first Emperor Augustus .
Birth and early life
She was born in Athens, Greece and after 36 BCE was brought to Rome by her mother and her siblings. Antonia never had the chance to know her father, Mark Antony, who divorced her mother in 32 BCE and committed suicide in 30 BCE. She was raised by her mother, her uncle and her aunt, Livia Drusilla. Due to inheritances, she owned properties in Italy , Greece and Egypt . She was a wealthy and influential woman who often received people, who were visiting Rome. Antonia had many male friends and they included wealthy Jew Alexander the Alabarch and Lucius Vitellius , a consul and father of future Emperor Aulus Vitellius .
Marriage to Drusus
In 16 BCE, she married the Roman general and consul Nero Claudius Drusus . Drusus was the stepson of her uncle Augustus, second son to Livia Drusilla and brother to future Emperor Tiberius . They had several children, but only three survived. Their children were the famous general Germanicus , Livilla and the Roman Emperor Claudius . Antonia was grandmother to Emperor Caligula , Empress Agrippina the Younger and great-grandmother and great-aunt to Emperor Nero . Drusus died in June 9 BCE in Germany , due to complications from injuries he sustained after falling from a horse. After his death, although pressured by her uncle to remarry, she never did.
Antonia raised her children in Rome and had Tiberius as their guardian. Germanicus died in 19CE. On the orders of Tiberius and Livia Drusilla, Antonia was forbidden to go to his funeral. When Livia Drusilla died in June 29CE, Antonia took care of Caligula, Julia Agrippina, Julia Drusilla , Julia Livilla and later Claudia Antonia , her younger grandchildren.
Germanicus was very popular among the citizens of Rome, who enthusiastically celebrated all his victories. He was also a favourite with Augustus, his grandfather-in-law, who, for some time, considered him as heir to the Empire. He was married to Agrippina the Elder , daughter of Julia the Elder (Augustus's own daughter) and Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa . He had nine children by Agrippina but only six lived to adulthood. They were Nero Caesar , Drusus Caesar , Gaius Caesar (Caligula), Julia Agrippina , Julia Drusilla and Julia Livilla . In 4CE, Augustus finally decided in favour of Tiberius, his stepson, but he was compelled to adopt Germanicus as a son and name him his heir. After the death of Augustus in 14CE, the Senate appointed Germanicus commander of the forces in Germania. Tiberius was made emperor, but he was highly unpopular and the legions rioted on the news. Refusing to accept Tiberius, the rebel soldiers cried for Germanicus as emperor. However, Germanicus refused. Germanicus died in Antioch , Syria in 19CE, a year after he defeated the kingdoms of Cappadocia and Commagene . His death was surrounded by speculation, and several sources refer to claims that he was poisoned by Gnaeus Calpurnius Piso , governor of Syria , under orders of the emperor Tiberius.
In 31CE, Antonia exposed a plot by her daughter Livilla and Tiberius' notorious Praetorian prefect, Sejanus , to murder the Emperor Tiberius and Caligula and to seize the throne for themselves. Livilla had poisoned her husband, Drusus Julius Caesar , Tiberius' son, in order to remove rivals. Sejanus was murdered on Tiberius's orders and Livilla was handed over to her formidable mother. Cassius Dio states that Antonia imprisoned Livilla in her room and allowed her to starve to death. After Livilla's death, Antonia's only remaining child was Claudius. Due to his constant illnesses and physical disabilities, she would constantly put him down. She would say a monster: a man whom nature had not finished but had merely begun or, when accusing anyone of stupidity, would exclaim, he is a bigger fool even than my son Claudius!.
Succession of Caligula and death
When Tiberius died, Caligula became emperor in March 37CE. Caligula awarded her a senatorial decree, granting her all the honors that Livia Drusilla had received in her lifetime. She was also offered the title of Augusta , previously only given to Augustus's wife Livia, but rejected it.
Six months into his reign, Caligula became seriously ill and never recovered. Antonia would often offer him advice. He once told her, I can treat anyone exactly as I please!.
Having had enough of Caligula's anger at her criticisms and of his behaviour, she committed suicide. Suetonius's Caligula, clause 23, mentions how he might have poisoned her.
When his grandmother Antonia asked for a private interview, he refused it except in the presence of the prefect Macro , and by such indignities and annoyances he caused her death; although some think that he also gave her poison. After she was dead, he paid her no honour, but viewed her burning pyre from his dining-room.
When Claudius became emperor after his nephew's assassination in 41CE, he gave his mother the title of Augusta. Her birthday became a public holiday, which had yearly games and public sacrifices held. An image of her was paraded in a carriage.
Antonia married Nero Claudius Drusus Germanicus  [MRIN: 551617465], son of Tiberius Nero  and Livia , in 0016 B.C. (Nero Claudius Drusus Germanicus  was born on 14 Jan 0038 B.C. and died on 14 Sep 0009 B.C..)