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Lecture

Augustus

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Department
Classical Studies
Course
Classical Studies 2200
Professor
Christopher Brown
Semester
Winter

Description
Feb 06 12 AugustusDifference of portrayals where some would view him as the White Knight of Rome bringing peace etc others would have as view him as the greatest politician in history knew how to manipulate and get his wayWas often sick throughout his life and always seemed to be about to die and because of this he thought a lot about his death and the way he would be remembered in history Res Gestae Divi Augusti was written by him After Actium The challenge for Octavian later Augustus and his supporters was to create a system of permanent rule Needed the acceptance of a majority of the senatorial and equestrian elite needed to maintain the loyalty of the army and the army reverted to its traditional role against foreign enemies wars of conquest established Octavians legitimacySenatorial Reform By 32 BC 700 senators had sworn a personal oath of loyalty to Octavian and an oath was a seriously bonding thing He revised the rolls of the Senate removing 190 unworthy men people who didnt agree with him Shrewd politics that have Rome led by an administrative organ that agreed with your views He was granted special powers by the Senate 28 and 23 BC and this was always presented as him doing a favour to them by accepting revered under the title Augustus and this marks him out as special but has no connection to the constitutional past for example he didnt call himself rex because people would have seen this as tyrannical He found the perfect balance between ruling with absolute authority and not appearing to do so and became princeps first among equals and not king tyrant dictator not even imperator which we get laterAugustus as Princeps Augustus chose this title to represent best his constitutional position and the word had positive republican associationsunlike rex king Cf princeps senatus First Senator and PrincipesChief men of the state
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