Caligula (Augustus) Coin: Brass Dupondius
NERO ET DRVSVS CAESARES - Statue of Nero and Drusus Caesar riding right cloaks flying
C CAESAR AVG GERMANICVS PON M TR POT - Legend surrounding S C
Mint: Rome (37-38AD)
Wt./Size/Axis: 12.50g / 29mm / 180
RIC 1-Gaius 34
BMCRE 44 (Caligula
BN 52 (Caligula)
Acquisition/Sale: Incitatus Coins Vcoins
From: Incitatus Coins
Nero and Drusus were the elder brothers of Caligula, and the sons of Germanicus. Both were heirs of Tiberius and both were killed by the machinations of Sejanus. Caligula survived Sejanus, and the subsequent years, to become emperor. He immediately proclaimed his informed uncle Claudius as his co-consul, an appointment made so that Caligula could, in essence, rule as sole consul. Claudius was given the modest
task of preparing a celebration of Caligula's brothers, including statues in their honor. According to 'I Claudius', Claudius encountered difficulty in completing these statues on time. The completed statues appear on this coinage.
ODERINT, DUM METUANT (LET THEM HATE, SO LONG AS THEY FEAR). ó CALIGULA
From Joe Geranio:
The dupondii issues of the brothers of Caligula , Nero and Drusus Caesar was no doubt to remind the Roman populace about the Dioscuri the saviors of the Roman state. The Dioscuri won a miraculous battle in 496 B.C. and then on the same day appear in the Roman Forum to tell the populace about the victory, no doubt Caligula wanted to associate himself with the Dioscuri with this issue of the gods represented as Nero and Drusus Caesars galloping on their horses with ease as though the wind is blowing in their hair. This familial propaganda would cement that the sons of Germanicus and Agrippina would reign and were in control.
This type was issued by Caligula for his two deceased brothers, Nero Julius Caesar and Drusus Julius Caesar Germanicus. Nero Caesar was Tiberius' oldest adoptive grandson and was the emperor's most obvious successor until 29 A.D. when he was accused of treason along with his mother, Agrippina the Elder. He was exiled to the island of Ponza where he was either induced to commit suicide or starved to death before October 31. In 30, his brother Drusus Caesar was also accused of treason and exiled and imprisoned. He starved to death in prison in 33, reduced to chewing the stuffing of his bed.
But he (Claudius) was exposed also to actual dangers. First in his very consulship, when he was all but deposed, because he had been somewhat slow in contracting for and setting up the statues of Nero and Drusus, the emperor's brothers.
Nero and Drusus were the brothers of the future emperor Caligula, and the children of Germanicus and Agrippina the Elder. More significantly Tiberius adopted both sons as grandchildren, and it was thought that Nero, being the oldest, would succeed Tiberius. However, Nero and his mother were accused of treason in 29 AD, and Neroís demise quickly followed when he was exiled to the island of Ponza. Drusus suffered a similar fate a year later in 30 AD and, having been accused of plotting against his Grandfather and Emperor, he was thrown into prison in 33 AD where he was left to starve.