Through his mother he was the first cousin to Roman Empress Valeria Messalina, her brother Marcus Valerius Messala Corvinus, second cousin to Messalina’s children Claudia Octavia and Britannicus. His second cousins were also Roman Emperor Augustus’ great grandchildren Aemilia Lepida and Marcus Aemilius Lepidus.
He was born in Rome between 1-6 and was raised there. In 7, his father was appointed German Governor, and committed suicide two years later in September 9, due to his defeat at the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest, Germania Inferior. His mother never remarried. In 26, his mother died in exile as a victim of the treason trials. Through his parents’ inheritance he became wealthy.
Younger Varus became another victim of Palace Guardsman Sejanus' treason trials. In 27, he was charged with treason and condemned. His accuser was the celebrated orator Domitius Afer. Roman Emperor Tiberius did nothing to save his relative.