What was Augustus Legacy as a politician, empire builder and cultural advocate?
Augustus was the Emperor and founder of the Roman Empire.He ruled from 27 BC to 14 AD when he died. Augustus’ supremacy brought about a firm ground of reign which stayed for about fifteen hundred years (Shotter 65). That is through the weakening of the Western Roman Empire and until the fall of Constantinople in the year 1453.
Augustus legacy as a politician, empire builder and cultural advocate was well magnificent. Just to begin with, after his death the new rulers of the Roman Empire both in old and new Rome for fourteen centuries decided to use his name (Augustus) as permanent titles. A part from that, Augustus also wrote some poems, an autobiography of 13 books and a philosophical treatise that have survived. (Shotter 45).
Augustus did considered by many as Rome’s greatest emperor because of his true policies that the life of the Empire to be long; Many people celebrated Roman peace (PaxRomana or Pax Augusta) that he initiated.(Shotter 92). Characters like being intelligent, decisive and a shrewd politician all associated with him. During his reign, the city of Rome got transformed by the establishment of the first police, fire fighting forces as well as the putting municipal perfect as a permanent office.
He will also be remembered by using his finances to develop roads throughout Italy. Augustus at the same time introduced an official communication system of relay stations,supervised by a military officer known as the Praefectus Vehiculorum(Shotter 76).A part from the roads creating smoother communication amongst Italian, the roads also created an a venue for Rome’s army to move quickly across the country. In the sixth year of his rule, Augustus established an organization called the AerariumMilitare donating 170 million sesterces towards it. This took care of active and retired soldiers.
Despite his hard work for the Roman Empire, Augustus gotcriticized by his contemporary. One of the Roman historian known as Tacitus wrote that Augustus lead Republican Rome into slavery. During his reign, people of Rome traded one slave to another. He further argued that the main aim of Augustus was angry for power.Even though, the Empire had peace, there were killings and assassinations. Anthony Everitt also termed Augustus as cruel, ruthless and only ambitious for himself.(Shotter 45). When he was fighting for fame, Augustus paid little attention to the authority or general civilities of political life. Augustus reign was characterized by devious, untrustworthy, and bloodthirsty. Those who criticized Augustus negatively were the Scottish scholar Thomas Blackwell, Historian Gordon and the Anglo-Irish writer Jonathan Swift.
Concluding we can say that, during the reign of Augustus, there was much development than underdevelopment in Rome. However, much some of his contemporary tries to criticize him in a negative way; he left a lot of tasty things some even inherited by the new Roman rulers. Augustus used his time to improve the lives of the people and left them in a better position than he found them. He preached a policy of reconciliation throughput his life with an aim to wipe out civil war (Shotter 89). Augustus branded himself as a man of no party but a leader to the whole nation. His legacy remains remembered in Rome up to date.
Shotter, D.Augustus Caesar: Lancaster Pamphlets. London: Routledge, 1991. Print.