« Claudius (1), emperor Clemens (1), Flavius, first cousin of Domitian Clemens Romanus, bishop of Rome »

Clemens (1), Flavius, first cousin of Domitian

Clemens (1), Flavius, son of Sabinus, brother of the emperor Vespasian, and therefore first cousin to Domitian, whose niece Flavia Domitilla was his wife. Domitian regarded his kinsman with great favour, and placed his two sons, whom he caused to be named after himself and his brother, Vespasianus and Domitianus, under the tuition of Quintilian as his destined successors. Flavius Clemens was consul in a.d. 95, and had only just resigned the office when he and his wife Domitilla were suddenly arrested and convicted on the charge of "atheism," by which there is no reasonable doubt that Christianity is intended. The crime on which they were condemned was, according to Dio Cassius, that of "Judaizing," from which in the popular mind Christianity was hardly distinguishable. The religious charge was regarded by Suetonius as a most trivial one, the object of suspicion rather than of proof—"tenuissima ex suspicione"—but it was strengthened by a neglect of the ordinary usages of Roman social and political life, almost unavoidable by a Christian, which was regarded as a "most contemptible indolence" meriting severe animadversion. Clemens suffered death; his wife Domitilla was banished to an island off the W. coast of Italy. [Domitianus, (1).] Sueton. Domit. § 15; Dio Cassius, Hist. lxvii. 14; Tillem. tom. ii. p. 124; Merivale, Romans under the Empire, vol. vii. c. lxii. p. 383; Lightfoot, Philippians, p. 22.

[E.V..]

« Claudius (1), emperor Clemens (1), Flavius, first cousin of Domitian Clemens Romanus, bishop of Rome »





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