Date of Award

Spring 5-1-2023

Document Type

Research Paper


Whittier Scholars Program

First Advisor

Dr. Elizabeth Sage


This research paper aims to analyze the extent of Roman Empress Julia Domna’s political power and how her power would have influenced the Roman empire. Roman women faced many limitations in the political world, including being unable to be elected to public office; however, Roman imperial women were in the unique position of being able to take up space in the political world. Empress Julia Domna’s role was symbolic and active, putting her nearly in equal standing to her husband, Emperor Septimius Severus, and her son, Emperor Caracalla. When considering the political limitations of Roman women, analyzing the extent of Empress Julia Domna’s political power provides a solid foundation and background for continuing and adding to the discussion of how Roman women worked around their limitations to effect change within the Roman empire. Throughout this paper, I will analyze the works of Cassius Dio and the works of scholars such as Riccardo Bertolazzi to provide context and examples of how far Empress Julia Domna’s power stretched. From accompanying her husband on his military campaigns to becoming a personal secretary for her son during his reign, Empress Julia Domna no doubt proves she was politically powerful in her own right.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.