Claudius was born on 1 August 10 BC at Lugdunum (modern Lyon, France). His mother, Antonia, may have had two other children who died young.His maternal grandparents were Mark Antony and Octavia Minor, Augustus' sister, and he was therefore the great-great grandnephew of Gaius Julius Caesar.Many authors contend that he was murdered by his own wife.
When Claudius' disability became evident, the relationship with his family turned sour.
Antonia referred to him as a monster, and used him as a standard for stupidity.
According to Vincent Scramuzza and others, Claudius began work on a history of the Civil Wars that was either too truthful or too critical of Octavian—then reigning as Augustus Caesar.
In either case, it was far too early for such an account, and may have only served to remind Augustus that Claudius was Antony's descendant.
In 9 BC, his father Drusus unexpectedly died on campaign in Germania, possibly from illness.
Claudius was then left to be raised by his mother, who never remarried.
Having a personal interest in law, he presided at public trials, and issued up to twenty edicts a day.
He was seen as vulnerable throughout his reign, particularly by elements of the nobility.
Claudius was constantly forced to shore up his position; this resulted in the deaths of many senators.