frequently called by the diminutive TULLIOLA, was the daughter of M. Cicero and Terentia.
The year of her birth is not mentioned, but it was probably in B. C. 79 or 78. [TERENTIA, No. 1.] Her birthday was on the 5th of Sextilis or August.
She was betrothed as early as B. C. 67 to C. Calpurnius Piso Frugi, whom she married in B. C. 63 during the consulship of her father.
At the time of Cicero's exile (B. C. 58). Tullia displayed a warm interest in his fate.
She and her husband threw themselves at the feet of the consul Piso to implore his pity on behalf of their father. During Cicero's banishment Tullia lost her first husband : he was alive at the end of B. C. 58, but she was a widow when she welcomed her father at Brundsium on his return from exile, in August of the following year.
She was married again in B. C. 56 to Furius Crassipes, a young man of rank and large property; but she did not live with him long, though the time and the reason of her divorce are alike unknown. [CRASSIPES, No. 2.] In B. C. 50 she was married to her third husband, P. Cornelius Dolabella, one of the most profligate young men of a most profligate age. Cicero was well acquainted with the scandalous private life of his future son-in-law, for although the latter was still only twenty, he had been already twice defended by the orator in a court of justice when accused of the most abominable crimes.
But the patrician birth, high connections, and personal beauty of Dolabella, covered a multitude of sins as well in Cicero's eves as in those of his wife and daughter. Dolabella had been previously married and divorced his wife Fabia for the purpose of marrying Tullia.
The marriage took place during Cicero's absence in Cilicia.
The connection, as might have been anticipated, was not a happy one. On the breaking out of the civil war in B. C. 49, the husband and the father of Tullia espoused opposite sides. While Dolabella fought for Caesar, and Cicero took refuge in the camp of Pompey, Tullia remained in Italy.
She was pregnant at the commencement of the war, and on the 19th of May, B. C. 49, was delivered of a seven months' child, which was very weak, and died soon afterwards.
After the battle of Pharsalia, Dolabella returned to Rome, but brought no consolation to his wife.
He carried on numerous intrigues with various Roman ladies; and the weight of his debts had become so intolerable that he caused himself to be adopted into a plebeian family, in order to obtain the tribuneship of the people, and thus be able to bring forward a measure for the abolition of debts.
He was elected tribune at the end of B. C. 48, and forthwith commenced to carry his schemes into execution. But Antony took up arms, and Dolabella was defeated.
In the midst of these tumults Tullia, who had been long suffering from ill health. set out to join her father at Brundusium, which place she reached in June, B. C. 47. Cicero, however, was unwilling that even his own daughter should be a witness of his degradation, and he therefore sent her back to her mother. Dolabelia's conduct had been so scandalous, that a divorce would have been the proper course; but this Cicero would not adopt, as he feared the anger of the dictator, and was unwilling to lose a friend in Dolabella.
He did not, however, require his intercession, for Caesar not only pardoned him but received him as his friend, when he landed in Italy in September (B. C. 47). Cicero returned to Rome, and Dolabella was likewise pardoned by Caesar. In December Dolabella went to Africa to fight against the Pompeian party, but he came back to Italy in the summer of the following year (B. C. 46). Tullia and her husband now lived together again for a short time, but before Dolabella left for Spain at the end of the year, a divorce had taken place by mutual consent.
At the beginning of the following year (B. C. 45) Tullia was delivered of a son.
As soon as she was sufficiently recovered to bear the fatigues of a journey, she accompanied her father to Tusculum, but she died there in February. 1
It appears from Cicero's correspondence that she had long been unwell, and the birth of her child hastened her death. Her loss was a severe blow to Cicero : he had recently divorced his wife Terentia, and married a young wife Publilia, without however adding to his domestic happiness; and thus he had clung to Tullia more than ever. His friends hastened to console him; and among the many consolatory letters which he received on the occasion is the well-known one from the celebrated jurist Serv. Sulpicius (ad Fam.
4.5). To dissipate his grief, Cicero drew up a treatise on consolation, in which he chiefly imitated Crantor the Academician [CICERO, p. 733b.]; and to show his love to the deceased. he resolved to build a splendid monument to her honour, which was to be consecrated as a temple. in which she might receive the worship both of himself and of others.
This project he frequently mentions in his letters to Atticus, but the death of Caesar in the following year, and the active part which Cicero then took in public affairs, prevented him from carrying his design into effect. Tullia's child survived his mother.
He is called Lentulus by Cicero (Cic. Att. 12.28
), a name which was also borne by his father by adoption; and as Dolabella was absent in Spain, and was moreover unable from his extravagance to make any provision for his child, Cicero took charge of him, and while he was in the country wrote to Atticus, to beg him to take care that the child was properly attended to. (Cic. Att. 12.28
The boy probably died in infancy, as no further mention is made of him.
The numerous passages in Cicero's correspondence in which Tullia is spoken of, are collected in Orelli's Onomasticon Tullianum
(vol. ii. pp. 596, 597), and her life is written at length by Drumann (Geschichte Roms,
vol. vi. p. 696, foll.)