Modern Interpretations of Agrippina the Younger

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Agrippina the Younger was the third wife of Claudius and the mother of Nero. Ancient writers have perceived her as a manipulative woman, controlling her husband and doing anything to place her son Nero upon the Imperial throne. Agrippina has gone down as one of the most powerful and most ruthless women in history. However modern historians have reviewed the images of Agrippina, free from the sexual bias of the Ancient writers. The histrorian James Romm portrayed Agrippina as a woman who was simply trying to escape the restrictions imposed on her by society. To quote james Romm “she stands out as the sole Roman woman to attempt to break the ultimate glass ceiling: to wield the power of a princeps, not just behind the scenes but before the astonished eyes of the senate,” Romm takes into account both the ancient writers and his own interpretation of Agrippina. Romm believes that her determination not only furthered her power but ultimately caused her downfall. He observes that the majority of Claudius move show us that Agrippina was shown as a “political asset”. Romm concluded that even though Agrippina may have been manipulative and ambitious she was still able to achieve what women of the era could not. The write Cat Pierro’s argues that Agrippina the Younger’s life is one that is full of mistakes, the largest of which was giving birth Nero. Pierro interpretation of Agrippina is that she was an Austere , arrogant woman that would use her sexuality to gain power. She was jealous of any woman that tried to become close to her husband and then her son, even going as so far to order the execution of a women that her husband Claudius complimented. Eventually she vilified herself enough to turn herself not only to turn her son against her but most of the court as well. Pierro concludes that as she was denounced by her son Nero, and the Senate feared Nero, she therefore

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