6. C. Silius
, son of No. 5, the most beautiful of the Roman youths, was passionately loved by Messalina, the wife of the emperor Claudius.
She made no secret of her affection for him, and visited his house openly, with a large retinue.
She compelled him to divorce his wife Junia Silana, and made him consul designatus in A. D. 48.
At length her effrontery reached so mad a pitch, that she married him with all the forms and ceremonies of a legal marriage, during the absence of her stupid husband at Ostia.
The latter would no doubt have remained ignorant of the whole affair, had not his freedman Narcissus resolved upon the destruction both of Silius and Messalina.
By means of two favourite concubines of Claudius, Narcissus acquainted the emperor with the outrage that had been committed against him. Silius was put to death and many others with him. (Tac. Ann. 11.5
; D. C. 60.31
; Snet. Claud.
26; Juv. 10.331
, &c.) [MESSALINA. p. 1054a.]