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Augustus was a title given to certain powerful Roman politicians from the time of Octavianus to the fifth century A.D. It roughly corresponds to the popular modern idea of "Roman Emperor", although in later times it often only applied to the Western part of the empire. The remainder of this article is about Octavianus, the first emperor to hold the title.

Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus, (62 B.C. - August 19, A.D. 14). Accorded the name or title Augustus by the Senate of Rome in 27 B.C.

Julius Caesar made provisions in his will adopting his great-nephew Gaius Octavius as his son and heir. In the Roman custom Octavius took his uncle's name as part of his own. At the time of Julius Caesar's death Octavius was 18. To take leadership of the Caesarian forces he returned to Rome from Greece and successfully outmaneuvered Marcus Antonius for leadership of Caesar's armies and control of his political forces.

His military right hand man was Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa, and his connection with the important class of the Equites or "Knights" was Gaius Cilnius Maecenas. Augustus's evident intention was to have Agrippa succeed him; he arranged for Agrippa to divorce his wife and marry Julia, Augustus's daughter by his first marriage. When Agrippa died unexpectedly in 12 B.C. Augustus's plans were upset. Until their deaths, Agrippa's minor sons who were also Augustus's grandsons, Gaius and Lucius, remained his heirs. His succession by his stepson and adopted heir Tiberius created the so-called Julio-Claudian dynasty from their two nomina or family names.

Ara Pacis Augustae--- the altar of the Augustan Peace

following emperor: Tiberius (A.D. 14 - 37)


Roman Emperors
Julio-Claudian Family Tree