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Agrippina the Younger

Agrippina the Younger, d. A.D. 59, Roman matron; daughter of Germanicus Caesar and Agrippina the Elder. By her first husband, Cneius Domitius Ahenobarbus, she was the mother of Nero. After her brother Caligula became emperor, she had some power until she was discovered conspiring against him. She achieved her ambitions for her son after her uncle Emperor Claudius I took her as his third wife. She dominated the emperor and persuaded him to advance the interests of Nero at the expense of his own son, Britannicus. She almost certainly poisoned Claudius, thus bringing Nero to power. She quarreled with Seneca, with Claudius' secretary Narcissus, and with the other ministers. Her son, weary of her intrigues, had her murdered. Colonia Agrippinensis (modern Cologne) was named for her.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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