Silanus is mentioned as governor of Syria by Josephus (Ant. 18, 2, 4, s.f.). According to Tacitus (who surnames him Creticus), he was in that office in, A.D. 16, but removed from the governorship by Tiberius in the following year, on account of the connection of his family with Germanicus, inasmuch as a daughter of Silanuas had been betrothed to Nero, the eldest of the children of Germanicus (Annals, 2, 4, 43). From his name, Creticus Silanus, it has been conjectured that he originally belonged to the Julia gens, but was adopted by the Caecilia gens. It has been further supposed that he is the same person as the consul Silanus of A.D. 9 (Dion Cass. 4, 30), who is better known as Metellus. In that case his full name would have been Q. Caecilius Metellus Creticus Silanus.