Paullus Fabius Persicus

Paullus Fabius Persicus (2/1 BCE - some time during the reign of Claudius) was the only son of Paullus Fabius Maximus and Marcia, a maternal cousin of Augustus (daughter of his aunt Atia and L. Marcius Philippus) and great-niece of Julius Caesar. As such, Persicus was a first-cousin-once-removed of Augustus and a great-great-nephew of Julius Caesar.

Birth and nameEdit

Paullus Fabius Persicus is believed to have been born in 2 or 1 BCE.[1] His cognomen - like the praenomen (Paullus) he shared with his father - was given to him to advertise his natural paternal descent from Lucius Aemilius Paullus Macedonicus, who had defeated the last Macedonian monarch, Perseus, in 146 BCE.[1]

Life and careerEdit

The first appearance of Persicus is in June of the year 15, when he was co-opted into the Arval Brethren[2] aged c. 15 to replace his then recently deceased father.[1] Around the same time, he was also made a member of the College of Pontiffs and of the Sodales Augustales. He subsequently held the posts of quaestor under Tiberius and praetor, though the details of these posts are unknown.[3] His next dated post is in 34, when he became ordinary consul with Lucius Vitellius, the father of the later Roman Emperor Vitellius, as his colleague.[4]

After his consulship, his next post was proconsul of Asia in the reign of Claudius (c. 44).[5] An edict written by Persicus from his time as proconsul of Asia survives, addressed to the Ephesians concerning issues in the worship of the Goddess Artemis.[3]

He seems to have died sometime in the reign of Claudius.[6]


According to Seneca the Younger, Persicus was a particularly vile person,[7] who owed his career more to his ancestry than to his own merit.[8] Ronald Syme adds, "He was also shunned by the virtuous and exemplary Julus Graecinus, the parent of Julius Agricola, unresponsive to the Narbonensian clientela of the Fabii."[6]


  1. ^ a b c Ronald Syme, Augustan Aristocracy (1989), p. 416
  2. ^ AE 1947, 52
  3. ^ a b Braund, D., Augustus to Nero: A Sourcebook on Roman History, 31BC-AD68 (1985), pp. 213-5 [1]
  4. ^ Alison E. Cooley, The Cambridge Manual of Latin Epigraphy (Cambridge: University Press, 2012), p. 460
  5. ^ Stevenson, G., Power and Place: Temple and Identity in the Book of Revelation (2001), p. 75 [2]
  6. ^ a b Syme, Augustan Aristocracy, p. 417
  7. ^ Seneca, De Beneficiis II.21.5
  8. ^ Seneca, De Beneficiis IV.30


  • Braund, D.; Augustus to Nero: A Source Book on Roman History 31 BC-AD 68 (Taylor & Francis, 1985) ISBN 0-7099-3206-5, ISBN 978-0-7099-3206-2
  • L'Année Epigraphique (AE)
  • Stevenson, G., Power and Place: Temple and Identity in the Book of Revelation (Walter de Gruyter, 2001)
  • Syme, Ronald; Augustan Aristocracy (Oxford University Press, 1989). ISBN 0-19-814731-7, ISBN 978-0-19-814731-2
  • Seneca the Younger, De Beneficiis (On Benefits)
Political offices
Preceded byas Suffect consuls Consul of the Roman Empire
with Lucius Vitellius
Succeeded byas Suffect consuls