Gaius Octavius was born on September 23, 63 BC in Italy. He was the first emperor of the Roman Empire and his reign lasted from 27 BCE to 14 CE. Born in nobility, Octavius was the great-nephew of Julius Caesar and later he adopted him as his legal heir. Although not a lot is known about his early life, it is widely believed that Octavius was an able military tactician, administrator, and diplomat that brought peace and stability in the Roman Empire after the death of Julius Caesar. He later changed his name to Caesar Augustus after coming in power.
Caesar Augustus And His Accomplishments As A Leader
Octavius was the son of Atia, who was the daughter of Julius Caeser’s sister ‘Julia’. His father was also a senator in the Roman Republic. He was first introduced to the Roman public at the age of 12 years, where he gave a speech at the funeral of his grandmother ‘Julia’. Julius Caesar always favored him and even took him on expeditions and processions. By the age of 16, he received the title of pontifices, which is the coveted membership of the board of the priests.
After the assassination of Julius Caesar in 44 BCE, who was his great uncle and his Father according to his will, the senate decided to give young Octavius membership of the senate. At that time, Caesar Augustus was just 18 years old but he accepted the responsibility and left his school in Apollonia, where he was leaning military skills and academics, and left for Rome. Upon arrival at Rome, he was immediately sent to wars on the borders. He also found that Marcus Antonius, who was the chief lieutenant of Julius Caesar, has confiscated all the funds and documents of Julius as he thought that he was the legitimate heir.
How Augustus Became The Emperor Of Rome?
After handling multiple civil wars, suppressing minor and major roman enemies and above all, ending the conflict with Mark Antony and Queen Cleopatra of Greece, Caesar Augustus came back to Rome as a champion of the people and a Roman hero. As he has provided the stability and peace that Rome was searching for a long time, the senate gave him almost unlimited powers over the control of the empire and reforming the constitution. He eventually became the princeps of the Roman Empire which translates to the first one or the first citizen. Also, he was given the tribune power for his lifetime, which meant that he can pass new legislatures on his own and convene the senate.
He was very wise and learned a lot from the mistakes of Julius Caesar and rejected the post of the dictator. He first earned the trust of the senate by winning wars and suppressing enemies and then won the hearts of the people by restarting games in cities and rebuilt a lot of temples all around the empire. He also created an efficient transportation network with new and better roads that facilitated better trade and transportation from one place to another. This earned him the title of Pater Patriae or the father of the country.
His wise decisions, efficient administration, and success in wars also made him a god for the people of Rome. Above all his feats were ‘Pax Romana’ that translates to the Roman peace, which refers to a period of peace after the end of civil wars all around Rome. His reign ended in 14 CE after his death due to illness.