Originally Posted by lokariototal
I read on wikipedia that both Caligula and Nero were from the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Does this mean they are direct descendants of Julius Caesar or something?
Caius Julius Caesar the Dictator left no legitimate male issue (at least from the legal Roman standpoint; Ptolemaeus XV Philopator aka "Caesarion
" may or may not have been his biological son).
All the emperors of this dynasty were members of the Caesa
r family within the patrician gens Iulia
Caius Julius Caesar Jr (aka "Caligula
") was born within the patrician gens Claudia
; he was related with CJ Caesar the Dictator via his maternal grandmother Julia the Elder, daughter of Augustus and therefore great-grand-niece of Caesar the Dictator.
The future emperor Nero was born Lucius Domitius Ahenobarbus (i.e. from the Ahenobarbus
family of the gens Domitia
); from his maternal side he was great-grandson of Julia the Elder (mentioned above).
The family tree below might be helpful.