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Tear Jerker / I, Claudius

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  • The death of Germanicus, mourned by Agrippina, Claudius and many others.
    At Rome the news of his death had brought such grief that it was as though every single household in the City had lost its most beloved member. Three whole days, though there was no decree of the Senate or order of the magistrates for it, were consecrated to public sorrow: shops shut, law-courts were deserted, no business of any sort was transacted, everyone wore mourning. I heard a man in the street say that it was as though the sun had set and would never rise again. Of my own sorrow I cannot trust myself to write.
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  • The death of Livia manages to become this.
  • Herod's last words, written to Claudius:
    Herod: "Marmoset, I am dying. My body is full of maggots. Forgive me. Forgive your old friend, who loved you dearly, yet secretly plotted to take the East away from you. I have failed. I played too dangerous a game. Little marmoset, you are a fool, but I envy you your folly. Do not weep for me; my punishment is just. I offended against the only living God. Farewell, my friend, whom I love more truly than you suppose. Farewell, little marmoset, my schoolfellow, and trust no-one. No-one. Your dying friend, Herod Agrippa."
  • From the same episode as the above, Calpurnia, Pallas and Narcissus having to tell Claudius of Messalina's adulteries. The denial, and then the heartbreak, on Claudius's face is palpable.
    • Even after he orders Messalina's arrest, he still cannot bring himself to blame her and seems to indirectly blame himself.
      "Poor woman. Whatever let her d-do such a thing? Oh, how unhappy she must have b-been..."
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    • At the end of said episode, he then learns of Messalina's execution, which, in a drunken state, he ordered. After he learns this, he sits in silence for a long time before his advisers leave, and then he finally breaks down in tears.
  • Calpurnia's death and Claudius' epitaph for her:
    "A harlot's love; a harlot's lie" -
    Cast that ancient proverb by.
    Calpurnia's heart was cleaner far,
    Roman matrons, than yours are.
  • Antonia wasn't a very warm mother to Claudius but when she tells him of her intention to kill herself, Claudius is deeply shocked and left in tears because, after all, she is his mother.

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