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Claudius Balbillus, Tiberius, Roman tribunus militum and author, 43 CE

Probably a son of Tiberius Claudius Thrasyllus and shared his astrological lore. (See astrology.) He was ADC (praefectus fabrum, see fabri) to Claudius and tribune of Legio XX in the invasion of Britain in 43 ce, winning decorations; he served as secretary dealing with Greek embassies and applications, and held posts in Egypt, including headship of the Museum at Alexandria (1). Favoured by Iulia Agrippina, he was prefect of Egypt from 55 until her death in 59. He survived until the reign of Vespasian, who allowed him honours from Ephesus; his daughter married Epiphanes of Commagene and he was grandfather of Iulius Antiochus Epiphanes Philopappus (suffect consul 109). Seneca Q.Nat. 4. 2. 13 describes Balbillus as exceptionally gifted in every branch of literature; fragments of his Astrologumena are preserved (CCAG 8. 3. 103, 8. 4. 233). (The identity of astrologer and prefect was denied by A. Stein (PIR2 C 813); whether the emissary sent to Claudius by Alexandria in 41 (PLondon1912 = Smallwood, Docs.…Gaius 370, line 16) is connected with them is unclear.)

Bibliography

Realencyclopädie der Classischen Altertumswissenschaft, s.v. “Claudius 82 and Suppl. 5.”Find this resource:

    D. Magie, Roman Rule in Asia Minor 2. 1398 ff..Find this resource:

      F. H. Cramer, Astrology in Roman Law and Politics (1954), 112 ff..Find this resource:

        H.-G. Pflaum, Les Carrières procuratoriennes (1960), 34 ff..Find this resource:

          F. Millar, The Emperor in the Roman World 86 f.Find this resource:

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