Augustus, The Great Emperor

Quotations-

“Caesar then went to fight Pompey’s sons in Spain; Augustus followed with a very small escort, along roads held by the enemy, after a shipwreck, too, and in a state of semi-convalescence from a serious illness. This energetic action delighted Caesar, who soon formed a high estimate of Augustus’s character.” (Suetonius, 8).

“When I administered my thirteenth consulate (2 B.C.E.), the senate and Equestrian order and Roman people all called me father of the country, and voted that the same be inscribed in the vestibule of my temple, in the Julian senate-house, and in the forum of Augustus under the chario which had been placed there for me by a decision of the senate.” (Res Gestae, 35).

These two quotations characterizes Augustus as a great emperor. The quotations expresses his militaristic and royal qualities. Even at the age of sixteen, he was pretty brave to follow Caesar to protect him. I chose these two quotations because they really give us the insight that Augustus was a great ruler. He had that quality since his childhood. He had that courage to protect the people of the country which is why he was very much respected by his countrymen. The passages are similar in the sense that they both depicts Augustus as brave and respected ruler of the country. The passages are different because the first one tells about him when he was too young, that is when he was sixteen years of age. The second quotation is when he got older, seventy-six years old. This was the other reason I chose these quotations because they portrays Augustus as a great person at his different ages of life.

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The image that I chose is the month of the “August” in my calendar. The word, August can be described as an adjective which basically means respected and impressive. This word is derived from the Latin word, Augustus, named after the Augustus Caesar, the first Roman emperor. (Merriam Webster Dictionary). I can also connect this to the quotes that I chose above because Augustus really was respected and impressive person. His countrymen respected him. He won so many battles. He not only ruled over Rome, but doubled up the size of the empire by adding territories from Asia and Egypt. Thus, he is known as one of the great ruler of the Roman Empire.

I can also connect this to something that I learnt in my Art History class. In that class, we studied the sculpture of the Augustus of Primaporta. Augustus was the adopted son of Julius Caesar who also became the first emperor of Rome. He is always shown with the cupid on the dolphin and bare feet which is why he is also considered a God. His breastplate portrayed the battle between Romans and Parthians where Rome lost. But Augustus was successful in peacefully negotiating with the Parthians which is why he is also known as good master and diplomat. 

Gurleen Kaur, Team Venus 

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Similar Names = Similar Thoughts?

“As for foreign nations, those which I was able to safely forgive, I preferred to preserve than to destroy.” (Gestae, 3).

Augustus thought it most important not to let the native Roman stock be tainted with foreign or servile blood, and was therefore very unwilling to create new Roman citizens, or to permit the manumission of more than a limited number of slaves.” (Suetonius, 40)

Both of these quotes characterize Augustus and his believes. It shows that he wants to preserve the cultures he conquers and not just destroy them. He also doesn’t want new blood mixed into the native Roman Population through. He wants to preserve, but keep a strict divide. These two quotes are similar because they show how Augustus dealt with foreign affairs whether it be the people or their culture. The difference though is he prefers the culture and their history over the current population. He rather know and not have the present population mixing with his “perfect” blood.

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The image above is a selfie I took with a friend name Tim, but his middle name is Augustine, which derives from the name Augustus. In this picture we had just helped a friend figure her way out on the subway late one night and had seen many rats. We wanted to take a picture to remember our adventure. I asked Tim why his parents gave him the middle name of Augustine and he said it was a family name. As Augustus was very poplar there are many versions from his name and therefore to have it be a family name is not to uncommon. Perhaps his family is an actual descendant of Augustus or some how related to have this name, or it could be that a member farther back really enjoyed the name. I have only known Tim for a few months, but I think that he connects to the quotes I picked from the reading, more so the first one than the second one. Tim is very inclusive and wants to make sure that all people are represented. Like Augustus he thinks that everyone’s culture is worth learning about, unlike Augustus he doesn’t want the divide between cultures. –Emma, Saturn

Don’t Monkey Around!

Cassius Dio: “he no longer restrained his wrath but showed great irritation, as if these very officials were really stirring up sedition against him.” (10)

Dio describes Caesar as an actual human being in this quote, meaning under all the hype about this romanticized image of the great Roman dictator Caesar, he is Julius Caesar first. People keep referring to Caesar as something that he feels that he isn’t, which I can understand why that would make him feel uncomfortable. Everyone only sees him as the Roman dictator, and nothing else, even if he tells others that he is only human. I picked this quote because it’s somewhat relatable because if people don’t listen to you after you have told them multiple times, you get annoyed after a while. This situation reminds me of what celebrities go through daily because their privacy is forgotten about, and their private lives are merged with their public lives.

Res Gestae: “In my nineteenth year, on my own initiative and at my own expense, I raised an army with which I set free the state, which was oppressed by the domination of a faction.” (1)

In this quote, Gestae shows Augustus in a positive light because he portrayed as a man who is willing to do whatever it takes for the benefit of his people. Despite Augustus being at a young age, his strong desire to contribute to society and his community persuades readers that the Roman dictator is a courageous, modest man; an image that contrasts the ones in the textbooks. I chose this quote because it promotes the message that every story has two sides to it. Even though we have been taught in school that Augustus was not a great leader, Gestae reminds readers about the positive aspects of Augustus because he was a young man that wanted to improve the well-being of his country, unaware of the fact that his risky political actions would contribute to the downfall of the Roman Empire.

The point-of-view in both passages are different from each other. In the first quote, Caesar’s thoughts of annoyance are written in third person. However, in the second quote, Augustus’ opinion is expressed in first person. Also, the passages are both referring to a different person.

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In my selfie, I took a picture with Caesar. He is the main protagonist of the movie, Planet of the Apes, and he was named after Julius Caesar because his role in the movie is to lead his people. My image relates to the quotes above because of the way the leader is portrayed. For example, the quotes describe a positive image of Julius Caesar and Augustus because of their leadership qualities. Julius Caesar may have been a big risk-taker when it came to the well-being of the people he ruled over, but Julius did it with good intentions. Caesar was considered to be a hero of his time because of the way he ruled over Rome. He was a fair and caring leader, similar to Caesar, the chimpanzee, because Julius took account of the people’s thoughts and opinions to better the empire. I think the writers of the movie decided to name the main protagonist after Julius Caesar because they wanted to convey the image of a great ruler who would guide his people through battle and politics for their well-being.

– Rebecca Lee, Team Jupiter

 

It and Augustus

For this blog post, we are supposed to write about an object or person that has a name that derives from Julius Caesar or Augustus, two of the most well-known Roman emperors in history. The object I chose that has a name that derives from these two emperors is the book It by Stephen King. Even though on the surface this novel doesn’t seem connected to these two famous emperors, it actually does. If you are familiar with the novel, the 1990s mini-series, or the movie that came out this year, you know that half of the book takes place in the summer of 1958 and two months in the summer are July and August. July is named after Julius Caesar and August is named after Augustus. Even though Stephen King didn’t choose these months because of the origins of their names, it is still interesting to look at why these months have these names. While both are important, I’m mainly going to focus on August and Augustus in this post.

Augustus was the adopted great-nephew of Julius Caesar and was emperor of Rome after Caesar’s death. I thought the month of August was named after Augustus because it was the month he was born, but this speculation actually isn’t true. According to Suetonius’ “Life of Augustus,” he states, “that the name ‘August’ should be transferred to September, because Augustus had been born in September but had died in the month now called August; and that the period between his birth and death should be officially entered in the Calendar as ‘the Augustan Age.” This is quote shows that August is actually named after Augustus’ death and not his birth. This also clears up this common misconception that many people have about the origins of the name “August.”

Augustus was a very popular ruler. In the same writing, Suetonius states, “Such was his reputation for courage and clemency that the very Indians and Scythians — nations of whom we then knew by hearsay alone — voluntarily sent ambassadors to Rome, pleading for his friendship and that of his people.” This shows how Augustus was seen as this powerful, courageous, merciful leader that was a desired ally. I chose this quote because it shows how other countries saw Augustus and how they all wanted to be his ally. He was seen as someone who would protect all the people he ruled over and who were on his side. As well as being courageous and merciful, he was also well accomplished. In Res Gestae, Augustus himself says, “Twice I triumphed with an ovation, and three times I enjoyeda curule triumph and twenty-one times I was named emperor.” This shows just some of the things that Augustus accomplished his long reign as emperor and it shows how accomplished Augustus was. I chose this quote because it shows how accomplished Augustus is and how Augustus views himself. These two quotes show how Augustus was seen as this powerful figure who accomplished many triumphs. Both passages list Augustus’ political and military victories.

This postive view of Augustus can be seen in artwork such as “The Augustus of Primaporta” made in 20 BC. This was meant to be a propaganda piece that showed Augustus as a powerful decendant of the gods that had a vast amount of political triumphs. His power is show by his powerful stance. Also, his divine herititage is symbolized by the cupid and the dolphin, which are symbols of Aphrodite, and his bare feet, which was used in art work to show god-like status. Furthermore, Augustus’ breast plate depicts many of his political victories, such as the returning of military standards to Rome from the Parthians. This sculpture, the passages, and the name, “August,” shows how Augustus was seen as this powerful, god-like figure and how he has a lasting legacy.

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Augustus of Primaporta picture link

-Emily Ryan, Team Mars

Augustus The Avenger

“The underlying motive of every campaign was that Augustus felt it his duty, above all, to avenge Caesar and keep his decrees in force. On his return from Apollonia, he decided to punish Brutus and Cassius immediately; but they foresaw the danger and escaped, so he had recourse to the law and prosecuted them for murder.”- (Suetonius, 10)

“I drove the men who slaughtered my father into exile with a legal order, punishing their crime, and afterwards, when they waged war on the state, I conquered them in two battles.”- (Res Gestae, 2)

These two passages characterize Augustus an avenger for Julius Caesar’s legacy. Julius Caesar chose Augustus to be his adoptive son. I specifically chose these two passages because Augustus is often characterized as a someone who was a powerful, great, and successful ruler, but I wanted to shine a light on why he was so mighty. His underlying purpose and intentions were to carry out what Julius Caesar could not because of his early death/ assassination. In Suetonius’s passage, it states how Augustus felt obligated to avenge Caesar by prosecuting Brutus and Cassius for murder. Similarly in Res Gestae’s passage, Augustus himself states that he wanted to take legal action in punishing those who harmed his father, Caesar. Both passages mention taking legal action as a form of punishment, but Suetonius specifically mentions Brutus and Cassius, while Res Gastae’s passage keeps the perpetrators anonymous, but points out all the things Augustus has done to avenge Caesar; not only does he punish them through law, but he successfully conquers them in two battles to defend Caesar’s honor.

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In this image, I took a picture with the “Silver Denarius of Octavian”. It is a silver coin that shows the head of Augustus. Augustus’s original name was Gaius Octavius. The coin was deprived from Augustus’s original name because it is meant to show that Augustus is someone who is one amongst the gods. Gods’ heads were the only ones who were allowed to be on coins. The fact that Augustus’s head is on a silver coin indicates that he is someone who is not only favored by the gods, but also someone who is a god himself. My speculation correlates with the quotes chosen above because it shows how powerful Augustus is. He is able to carry out orders as a great ruler should and he punishes those who are in the wrong. He is also victorious in his battles and brings peace among the Roman empire. A god’s job is to create order in the world and punish those who have sinned, which is similar to how Augustus controls his empire. In a way, Augustus plays the role of god among the Romans. When inheriting Caesar’s name, with it came all the titles that followed. Augustus’s name became: Imp [Julius] Caesar [Octavianus] Divi filius Augustus Imp XXI Pont Max Trib Pot XXXVII Cos XIII Princeps Senatus Pater Patriae [imperium maius]
Augustus’s full name in and of itself is something that shows how great he is. “Divi filius” means “son of god”. “Imp” is short for “Imperator” which means “emperor”. Albeit his name may be long, it shows everything that Augustus defines himself to be.

Mary Huang, Team Vulcan

First Sextilis, then August

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Quotes characterized Augustus:

1) “Augustus announced his candidature for a tribuneship of the people– death had created a vacancy- although neither a patrician nor a senator, and thus doubly disqualified from standing” (Suetonius, 10).
2) “In my nineteenth year, on my own initiative and at my own expense, I raised an army with which I set free the state, which was oppressed by the domination of a faction” (Res Gestae, 1).

These two quotes show that Augustus was a man who fought for himself and people. In the first quotation, we can read that he tried to be a candidate for tribuneship, even though he never had anything to do with that, which disqualified him automatically. Another quote is a part of the piece that Augustus wrote about himself. It shows that as a young man he already was able to be there for people, and help them out.
I chose those two quotations because I wanted to describe Emperor Augustus as a brave young man who was not afraid to take actions and help.
Two passages are similar because both of them emphasizes Augustus’ courage. The first one is from Suetonius. The author describes the ruler willingness to take a risk. The second quote is Augustus’ own words. He describes how he raised an army on his own.

I took a selfie with the month of August from my new planner for 2018. August it the eight month of the year in the Gregorian calendar and it’s named after Emperor Augustus. At first it was named Sextilis (in Latin), but later on, Julius Caesar changed it in honor of Augustus Caesar in 8 BCE.

I think that there is the connection between Augustus that we read about in class and my picture. The month August was named in honor of Emperor Augustus, which means that he was an important person who deserved it. In our readings, we can read about Augustus as a young man who was able to help people, take the risk and show his courage. This post is also connected to our art history class because we spoke about Augustus’ sculpture and described him very specifically as a young brave man.

Edyta, Team Aphrodite

 

 

 

 

 

 

Augusto!

  • “As a judge he was both conscientious and lenient…”

-(Passage 33, Life of Augustus, Suetonius)

This quote portrays one of Augustus’ main qualities – being diligent and meticulous, while being lenient. The author gives summarized examples of how Augustus exercised his power in this manner, which included him adding a third tablet for jurors in a particular case for the benefit of the suspect, and assigning different cases to the City Praetor, with citizens’ appeals. This passage gives us insight into how Augustus executed his duties, and we are able to see that he was a dedicated and fair-minded leader.

 

  • “When the dictatorship was offered to me, both in my presence and my absence, by the people and senate, when Marcus Marcellus and Lucius Arruntius were consuls (22 B.C.E.), I did not accept it.”

-(Passage 5, Res Gestae)

The second quote displays one of Augustus’ other predominant qualities – seeming humble, but with a hint of pride. This is evident in the way he highlights who and what circumstances surrounded him being offered the dictatorship – the people and senate, the consuls, and in his presence and absence. In this passage, Augustus is offered the dictatorship, and turns it down multiple times. Additionally, we are informed of how he frees the city from fear and danger through utilizing his own expenses, which also displays his humble, yet prideful, characteristic.

The traits selected stood out in both of the authors’ pieces, and were crucial in describing Augustus. Though these passages exhibit attributes that might not be that similar, they are somewhat connected in relation to building a well-respected and successful leader. Being humble, with hints of pride, and possessing diligence and leniency in work ethics are two predominant qualities in the formation of a great leader. I chose these two characteristics because of this connection, and due to the fact that these are extremely important features of Augustus. Through the presentation of different events, the first passage being his work in the courts and the second passage entailing his denial of a prestigious role, we are able to obtain these two traits and connect them.

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This is an image featuring me and my cousin, Keon. It was taken the day after I had just arrived from Guyana. Keon, whose middle name happens to be Augusto, is from Grenada, where this name is extremely uncommon.

Theory! – After researching the actual meaning of “Augusto,” which derives from “Augustus,” and means majestic and venerable, I began to think that his parents named him this because of the name’s rarity in the Caribbean, and due to their knowledge of Augustus, while dreaming of Keon becoming someone outstanding (“majestic”), yet humble.

To confirm my speculation, I asked my Uncle why he had named my cousin “Augusto,” who responded, “Just like Augustus, he will be well-known for something amazing.” I was correct on where they obtained the name from, and their wishes for his future.

My theory of why they named him “Augusto” does connect with quotes I selected in that the quotes and my speculation of the reason for Keon’s name are extremely similar. Keon does manifest these traits in his personality – he is the type of person who tries to present himself as humble, which is obvious in everyday actions, while being very diligent in whatever he does.

 

-Daniel, Team Diana.

How Comes that Augustus Caesar relates to a Hotel’s name?

Suetonius wrote in “Life of Augustus” that “Yet Augustus never wantonly invaded any country, and felt no temptation to increase the boundaries of Empire or enhance his military glory; indeed, he made certain barbarian chieftains swear in the Temple of Avenging Mars that they would faithfully keep the peace for which they sued.” From this quotation, we see Augustus is a very peaceful and rational person, he had no temptation of expanded his empire, the reason why he fought is not that he wanted to have more glory or become more powerful but only because he wanted to united all barbarians, keep the peace and prevent further wars. He had such a big heart.

This an excerpt of what Augustus Caesar wrote at Res Gestae, it is about himself for his own Mausoleum in Rome. “I often waged war, civil and foreign, on the earth and sea, in the whole wide world, and as a victor, I spared all the citizens who sought pardon. As for foreign nations, those which I was able to safely forgive, I preferred to preserve than to destroy.” This is an excerpt of what Augustus Caesar wrote about himself, he said that he often started wars inside of the empire or outside with other nations, in the whole wide world. As a winner of the wars, he forgave all the citizens as they sought pardon, he preferred to keep these nations with peace than to destroy them. We can see here that Augustus wanted to let people know how generous he is, he didn’t want to eliminate these nation even they lose.

The reason why I chose these two quotes is that I learned from Art class that Augustus Caesar brought Pax Romana- 200 years of peace to Rome. What I learned from Art 1010 really connect to what we learned in this unit for Clas 1010. Also, this is very interesting that both Suetonius and Augustus himself described the reason of wars that Augustus started is because he wants to keep a further and longer peacetime, he is very kind to forgive the loser nation and make barbarians to vow and keep the peace.

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This is an image of Hotel Caesar Augustus in Capri, Italy. Capri is famous by the statue of Augustus Caesar, it is the symbol of the city. The Hotel Caesar Augustus has it history since 19 century. Before to be transformed to be a hotel, it was a village that bought by Russia’s Prince Emmanuel Bulhak by the first half of 19th century. Bulhak believed that Augustus Caesar is the person who made Capri famous and he is the emperor of the world, Bulhak placed the statue of Augustus on the terrace because of it. By the second half of 29th century, Prince Bulhak sold the village to the family Signorini and the family transformed it into a hotel. The name of this hotel has nothing to do with the kind and peaceful characteristic of August Caesar but there is no doubt that Capri had become famous because of him and this was the reason why the family Signorini named it after him.

#Qiyi, Team Vesta

The Great Augustus Caesar

Suetonius

“Augustus introduced many reforms into the Army, besides reviving certain obsolete practices, and exacted the strictest discipline. He grudged even his generals home leave and granted this only during the winter.”

Res Gestae

I often waged war, civil and foreign, on earth and sea, in the whole wide world, and as the victor, I spared all the citizens who sought pardon. As for foreign nations, those which I was able to forgive safety, I preferred to preserve than to destroy.”

In the first passage, Augustus appears as a character who is an excellent administrator. He carried out an enormous work of reorganizing the entire Roman Empire. Furthermore, through stringent rules with strict discipline Augustus was able to bring a lasting Roman peace that improved communication and prosperous trade. Rejuvenation of old practices adequately integrated Judaism and Christianity through transmission of Classical heritage from Romans and Greeks.

Contrastingly, in the other passage of Res Gestae, Augustus is depicted as a merciful emperor who forgave those that surrendered and gave themselves to the Roman Empire.

The choice of two passage relies on the fact that they bring out clearly how Augustus was able to tactfully conceal autocracy in a traditionalist way to satisfy a war-worn generation. For instance, Augustus hardly was he known for mercy over his enemies, but he uses the propaganda to cloak his ruthlessness over his subjects to satisfy the upper bourgeoisie that much benefited from new requests made by the emperor.

The passages are similar in such a way that both reveal Augustus’ mastery of imaginative propaganda that was used to expand his territory as well as conquering his enemies. The technique was used to get massive following even beyond boundaries of the Roman Empire.

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This is an image of my young cousin called Augustine and me. The name Augustine is a derivative of Augustus which means “the increase” or “majestic.” In particular, my cousin in the picture is believed to be having the qualities of a splendor or a leader. He is very charismatic, principled for a young boy, courageous and brave and very respectful.

Comparing my speculation to the quotes, I will say it partially connects to the quotes as my cousin is a brave and courageous boy like Augustus Caesar, but the name he was given according to his parents was influenced by a man of God.

In Art History, we discussed some of the qualities of Augustus Caesar, by analyzing the sculpture below.

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This piece of sculpture is one of the famous portraits of Augustus Caesar. The portrait is called Augustus of Primaporta because of where it was found in Italy. Augustus is standing in contrapposto, this means he is a bit slanted in his stance. The emperor is wearing military regalia, and his arm is raised and outstretched, demonstrating that he might have been addressing his troops. The bare feet of the emperor suggest he was a god, and so does the cupid beside his right leg. The artwork here also serves as a visual propaganda by expressing the emperor’s divine lineage and military triumphs.

Richard, Team Vulcan.

Citations

Dowson, Thomas. “Augustus of Prima Porta.” Archaeology Travel, 10 Jan. 2017, archaeology-travel.com/friday-find/augustus-prima-porta/.