Augustus Caesar was a highly respected ruler of the Roman Empire. Augustus rose to his power after his uncle, Julius Caesar, was killed. He was forced to clean up the mess Julius had left after his assassination. The Roman Republic was shattered after all the fighting that took place to decipher the future leader of Rome. The problems that occurred were not from outside threats, it was inside the city where the disruption began and tore the city apart. Augustus Caesar believed that only a strong monarchy could bring the city back up on its feet.
He ruled with republican views because he knew the ruling class would support him, and that was what he needed. Later on once he became a legitimate ruler of Rome he took the name princeps, which meant first citizen, rather than dictator or king. This made him seem as if he was not as powerful and overbearing as past rulers of the Roman Empire. Augustus Caesar had a very positive historical legacy.
He did many things for the public to keep them safe and also helped the impoverished people while rewarding those who were successful. Caesar improved every aspect of Rome from the law, to the people, to taxes.
He was an all-around gratuitous ruler. Augustus Caesar was a strong ruler from the beginning of his reign to the end, his techniques for ruling were highly successful, and he left behind a very positive legacy. Augustus Caesar was Julius Caesar’s grandnephew. Once Julius Caesar was assassinated he left the Roman Republic to be handed down to Augustus, Octavian at the time, to rule. He later gained the name Augustus once he became ruler of the Roman Empire. His ruling exemplified the transition of Rome from a republic to an empire.
He ruled from 31 B. C. to A. D. 14 (SPARKNOTES). This was a time of great prosperity and expansion for Rome. Julius Caesar was assassinated by Brutus and Cassius. In order to keep the Roman Republic in the family, Augustus, then Octavian, fought against Mark Antony, Cassius, Brutus, and Lepidus (Perry86). Octavian fought out all the others and became master of Rome. Caesar won because he was the superior general overall and because his army was better, faster, and had the bases for survival (SPARKNOTES). He was the first Roman emperor (Perry 86).
From the very beginning of his reign, Octavian had his hands full because the entire Roman society was crushed to ruins from the effects of all the battles fought for leader of Rome. Every aspect of a Roman society had fallen to pieces, and it was Octavian’s job to rebuild it. Caesar knew only a strong republican government could being the empire back together, he also knew the Roman ruling class would be in high support of this and he needed their approval. Octavian held absolute power without breaking the republican past that Rome was known for (Perry 86).
He inconspicuously hid his absolute power by considering himself part of the Senate which was weakened by the loss of many others due to the battles fought after Julius Caesar’s death. Octavian cleverly offered to give up his reign because he knew the Senate would not allow it. They demanded that he should continue to rule the state. Now Octavian was able to be an authentic ruler of Rome and not a uncontrolled dictator, which was very disliked by the Roman Empire. Octavian decided to keep the presence of a traditional republican government and refused to be called king or dictator like Julius Caesar did.
This showed the people that he was not like Julius and that he was trustable. He would be referred to as principate (Perry87). The Senate also dubbed him the name Augustus (Perry 87). This signified the end of the Roman Republic and the beginning of the Roman Empire. Augustus Caesar was a very controversial ruler, but at the same time he was also a prodigious ruler. He terminated the aristocratic form of politics and unveiled the one-man ruler (Perry 87). Although Augustus began his ruling as a self-absorbed tyrant, he was actually a creative statesman (Perry 87).
He brought back many ancestral views and ways of life. He slowly conveyed peace and the republican rule (SPARKNOTES). Caesar considered his power of public trust and that it was given to him by the people. Augustus set out to restore the Roman Empire by reestablishing political order, bringing back ethical values, community spirit, and a census that had not been done in nearly seventy years (SPARKNOTES). He reformed the army to guard against and reimbursements of some of the rival armies that wrecked the republic. Caesar did many good things throughout his reign, he made sure the veteran soldiers ad money and land once they retired from the army, he helped the city by building aqueducts to provide water in homes, and created a fire brigade to lessen the risk of fires in crowded living quarters (Perry 87). Augustus Caesar would go out of his way and use his own money to help his state out. He was a very giving and hardworking ruler of Rome, and that is why he was so loved and respected by the public. Even though he used sly and clever ways to gain the highest rank in the Roman government, he was still a very truthful, proud, and successful emperor of Rome.
Many people expected Caesar to turn out just like Julius, but he proved them wrong by bringing the state back up from the ruins and making it greater than it had ever been. Augustus did many things to help out the public. He organized a police force to lessen the violence in the city (Perry87). He increased the distribution of free grain to the underprivileged. Augustus also paid for the popular gladiatorial combats with his own money (Perry 87). Not only did Augustus do work in Rome he also did a lot of work outside of his city.
All throughout Italy he repaired roads, promoted community works, and involved more Italians in the supervision and organization of the Empire. Caesar gained approval from provincials by correcting tax abuse, fighting corruption and extortion (Perry 87). He also improved the quality of governors all throughout Italy and allowed faithful men to work for the state. Augustus Caesar was all about helping others throughout his reign of the Roman Empire. He was a very hardworking and efficacious ruler who brought triumph to a ruined city. Augustus Caesar had a hard time coming for him when he became the new ruler of Rome.
His job was to create a new form of government that would be effective. All the former rulers of Rome did not have successful governments which is why they did not prevail. Caesar fixed this problem by expanding the government and turning Rome into an empire. He created the principate, which was an entirely new form of government that was highly effective. This new way of governing was confusing in nature and evolved overtime. Caesar created it this way so he could gradually confuse the public away from the old forms of government (SPARKNOTES).
Many of the significant aspects of the principate were done behind closed doors. Many people view his way of governing as a diarchy. They thought it was a split of power between Augustus and the senate. This is why Rome became so powerful and strong because they had a form of government no one else had. It was not frowned upon by majority of the civilians like the past forms of government had been. Caesar knew he had to come up with something that had never been done before and something that would be widely accepted by majority of the people.
Augustus Caesar’s historical legacy was one that no other ruler of Rome would have come close to. He was brought into power at a very tough time for the city of Rome. It had been turned to ruins while Augustus and some others fought each other to gain its power, and Augustus prevailed. He had to bring back Rome’s strength, confidence, and perseverance. He actually evolved the Senate to where it was not inheritance based. He required the candidates of the Senate to have a certain amount of military service, one million cisterces, and they had to have a good sense of character (SPARKNOTES).
Augustus Caesar created a government that allowed him to be the supreme ruler, but not come across as greedy. He allowed the Senate to help him govern Rome, but also made sure those who were in the Senate were capable of the job. Caesar revived the city and helped clean up the entire country of Italy. He did many projects that helped Rome get back on its feet and allow the city to become stronger than it had ever been in the past. Rome was in need of a strong and confident ruler to bring the city back and make it better than ever. Augustus Caesar was the man for the job and he did his job very effectively.
He revived a city that was so corrupted by past rulers and also corrupted by many of the people who dwelled inside the city. Augustus brought back the trust civilians needed to restore their hope in their city. He had one of the longest rulings in Roman history and was constantly reelected by the people all the time. He was loved by the Romans because he would do his best to help out all classes of people. He fed the poor, while congratulating the rich. Augustus Caesar was a very successful ruler who had a highly positive legacy left behind.
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