Named after her maternal grandfather Gaius Poppaeus Sabinus (consul ad 9, governor of Moesia 12–35), was married first to Rufrius Crispinus, praetorian prefect under Claudius, by whom she had a son, later killed by Nero. By 58, during her second marriage, to the future emperor Otho, she became mistress of Nero. Allegedly at her instigation, Nero murdered Iulia Agrippina in 59 and in 62 divorced, banished, and executed Claudia Octavia. Nero now married Poppaea, who bore a daughter Claudia in 63; both mother and child received the surname Augusta, but the child died at four months. Through Poppaea's influence, her native Pompeii became a colony. In 65, pregnant again, she is supposed to have died from a kick which Nero gave her in a fit of temper, and was accorded a public funeral and divine honours.
Subjects: Classical studies