| Caligula (m. 39 AD–41 AD)|
Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo
| AD 39 – 24 January AD 41|
24 January AD 41
Palatine Hill, Rome
Julio-Claudian Dynasty (by marriage)
January 24, 41 AD, Palatine Hill, Rome, Italy
Caligula, Cassius Chaerea, Julia Drusilla, Helen Mirren, Lollia Paulina
Milonia Caesonia Wikipedia
Milonia Caesonia (d. AD 41) was a Roman empress, the fourth and last wife of the emperor Caligula.
The daughter of Caesonius and Vistilia, Caesonia was born toward the beginning of the first century, but the year is not certain. Her birthday was celebrated between 2 June and 4 June. The gens Caesonia was of modest origin, and had only recently come to prominence. Caesonia had six half-brothers, five of whom are known:Servius Cornelius Scipio Orfitus, whose son, Servius Cornelius Scipio Salvidienus Orfitus, was consul in AD 51;
Gnaeus Domitius Corbulo, consul in 39, and a distinguished general under Claudius and Nero, was the father of the empress Domitia Longina;
Quintus Pomponius Secundus, consul suffectus in 41;
Publius Pomponius Secundus, consul suffectus in 44;
Publius Suillius Rufus, consul in 43, and father of Marcus Suillius Nerullinus, consul in 50.
Little is written of Caesonia's life. Suetonius says that when Caligula married her, she was neither beautiful nor young, and was already the mother of three daughters by another man. He describes her as a woman of reckless extravagance and wantonness, whom Caligula nonetheless loved passionately and faithfully. According to Cassius Dio, the two entered into an affair some time before their marriage, either late in AD 39 or early in 40, and that the emperor's choice of a bride was an unpopular one. The satirist Juvenal suggests that Caligula's madness was the result of a love potion administered to him by Caesonia.
Caesonia was pregnant at the time of the marriage, and gave birth to a daughter, Julia Drusilla, only one month later (or according to Suetonius, on her wedding day).
In the account given by Suetonius, the emperor would parade Caesonia in front of his troops, and sometimes displayed her naked in front of select friends. In an odd demonstration of affection, he would jokingly threaten to have her tortured or killed.
On 24 January, AD 41, Caligula was slain by an assassin. As part of the wider conspiracy, Caesonia and her daughter Julia Drusilla were murdered just hours after Caligula's demise. Josephus reports that she died bravely: stricken with grief at her husband's death, she willingly offered her neck to the assassin, telling him to kill her without hesitation.
Caesonia has been portrayed several times on film and television:1937 – Leonora Corbett in the uncompleted film I, Claudius
1966 – Krista Keller in the TV movie Caligula
1968 – Barbara Murray in the TV series The Caesars
1975 – Yvonne Lex in the TV movie Caligula
1976 – Freda Dowie in the TV series I, Claudius
1979 – Helen Mirren in the theatrical film Caligula