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in ancient Rome the name (cognomen) of one branch of the Livian clan (gens) and certain members of the Claudian clan. Several famous Romans bore this name.
Marcus Livius Drusus Maior (born c. 154 B.C.; died c. 109 B.C.) was tribune in 122 B.C. at the same time as Gaius Gracchus, his political opponent; Drusus acquired the nickname “defender of the Senate.” He was consul in 112 B.C.
Marcus Livius Drusus Minor (born c. 124B.C.; died 91 or 90 B.C.) was the son of the former. As tribune in 91 B.C. he proposed laws to deprive the equestrian class of jurisdiction in the courts and to transfer it to the Senate (the latter was to have 300 members of the equestrian class added to it), to grant Italians the rights of citizenship, to establish colonies on the public lands of the Campania and Sicily, and to institute the sale of cheap grain to the plebeians. The equestrian class and many of the senators opposed the reforms of Drusus, and he was assassinated. His death served as a signal for the beginning of the war of the Italian tribes, the so-called Social War.
Nero Claudius Drusus (born 38 B.C.; died 9 B.C.), Roman general and stepson of Augustus. In the year 18 B.C. he became quaestor; in 15 B.C., together with his brother, the emperor Tiberius, Drusus waged war against the tribes of the Raeti and the Vindelici. In 13 B.C., after becoming commander in chief of the Roman army in Gaul, where he put the provincial administration in order, Drusus went on the offensive against the Germanic tribes. After crossing the Rhine in 12 B.C., he subdued the Germanic tribes of the Bructeri and Chauci. In 11 B.C. he reached the Weser River, and in 10 B.C. he organized an expedition against the Chatti tribes. In 9 B.C., when he was consul, Drusus defeated the Cherusci and Marcomanni and reached the Elbe River. He died on the return trip.
Julius Caesar Drusus (born c. 13 B.C.; died 23 A.D.), Roman general and son of Tiberius. In 14 A.D. he put down an uprising of the Pannonian legions. In 15 and 21 he was consul. From 17 to 20, Drusus governed the Roman province of Illyricum. He was poisoned by the praetorian prefect Sejanus.
A. I. NEMIROVSKII