Sejanus

(Lucius Aelius Sejanus)

d. 31
Civilization: Roman — Rome
   Field of Renown:  military — Traitor
Era:  Early Empire

Sejanus
SEJANUS AVENGES HIMSELF ON HIS ENEMY, THE SON OF TIBERUS
Sejanus was the commander of the Praetorian Guard under Tiberius, and wielded great influence from the beginning of his reign, until he was finally executed for treason. About four years after Sejanus came to power, Germanicus, heir to the imperial throne, was killed while in the East. This opened up a rift between Tiberius and the family of Germanicus, which Sejanus was able to use over the years to increase his own influence. He also developed a relationship with Livilla, the daughter-in-law of Tiberius, and induced her to poison her husband Drusus, son of Tiberius and heir to the imperial throne.

The way was now clear for Sejanus to seize absolute power. He made plans to marry Livilla, and he had Agrippina and her family imprisoned for treason. Finally he encouraged the relocation of Tiberius to the island of Capri, arranging things so that he himself would run the empire from Rome. But Tiberius soon discovered his schemes, and with the help of another guard named Marco, had Sejanus arrested and executed, along with dozens of his friends and family members.


Key events during the life of sejanus:


Year
Event
15
Became sole commander of the Praetorian Guard in Rome.
  Increased influence with Tiberius.
19
Death of Germanicus, next heir to the imperial throne.
23
Conspired with Livilla to murder Drusus, son of Tiberius.
25
Attempted to marry Livilla, widow of Drusus.
27
Tiberius retired to Capri. Sejanus left in charge in Rome.
29
Arrested and imprisoned Agrippa, wife of Germanicus, and son Nero.
30
Arrested and imprisoned Drusus, son of Germanicus.
31
Sejanus was tried for treason and executed, along with his children and friends.
33
Agrippa and two of her sons died in captivity.

Other Resources


Story Links
Book Links
Rise and Fall of Sejanus  in  Pictures from Roman Life and Story  by  Alfred J. Church
Tiberius Smothered  in  The Story of the Romans  by  H. A. Guerber


Image Links


The insult was terribly avenged
 in Pictures from Roman Life and Story

Praetorian guards
 in Famous Men of Rome


Contemporary
Short Biography
Tiberius Second emperor. Stepson of Augustus. Retired to Capri.
Agrippina the Elder Granddaughter of Augustus Caesar; accused Tiberius of killing her husband Germanicus.
Livilla Wife of Drusus, son of Tiberius. Conspired with Sejanus to kill her husband.
Marco Praetorian guard who assisted Tiberius in bringing down Sejanus.