Augusta AD 193 - 217
Wife of Septimius Severus;
Mother of Caracalla and Geta;
Sister of Julia Maesa;
Aunt of Julia Soaemias and Julia Mamaea;
Great-aunt of Elagabalus and Severus Alexander.
Julia Domna was born about 170 in Emesa of Syria as the younger daughter of Julius Bassianus, priest of the sun god Elagabal. Having come to the attention of Severus she married him, probably in 187, and bore their first child, the future emperor M. Aurelius Antoninus, known as Caracalla, in 188, and about thirteen months later, she gave birth to a second son, Geta. Julia accompanied her husband in the campaign against Pescennius. After this successful campaign, there was another campaign in the East, against the Parthians, in 197. Afterwards, she was with Severus on a journey to Egypt and other parts of the empire. She was widely honored with inscriptions throughout this period, and numerous coin issues emphasized her imperial position. She was often accused of adultery; nonetheless, the emperor chose to ignore these charges. When Severus died at York in early 211, she returned to Rome with her sons whom she persuaded to share the rule. In 212, however, Caracalla murdered his brother while he sought succor in his mother's arms; covered with his blood, she was forbidden to grieve. When she learned, in 217 at Antioch, that Caracalla had been assassinated, she resolved upon death, which followed her refusal to take food. Her remains were ultimately placed in Hadrian's Mausoleum.
Mints: Alexandria, Emesa, Laodicea ad Mare, Rome.
List all Julia Domna coins in the Catalog.