The people try to convince Augustus to become dictator. He refuses. Then the proconsul of Macedonia, Marcus Primus, is brought up on serious charges of ruining the reputation of Rome. He blames his actions – on Augustus!
It’s late 23 BCE. Agrippa leaves Rome and makes his home in Lesbos. Rumours fly. Meanwhile there are still plagues, famine and natural disasters in Rome. The dark shadow of death lies over at least one member of Augustus’ inner circle.
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In 23 BCE Augustus fell very sick with man flu once again. It was so bad, everyone thought he was going to die. When he miraculously recovered, he decided he’d had enough of the stress of being consul – and he resigned. This time – for good. Which caused some problems.
When Augustus finally returns to Rome late in 24, he travels along newly restored roads that he had mostly paid for himself. They were adorned with statues of him. But how much did those statues, and those that survive today, actually resemble his true likeness? Also, Marcellus and Tiberius, the young guns, are being prepped…
We’re back! First show of 2017! On his way back from Spain, Augustus falls deathly ill with man flu, which forces him to think about his future. It doesn’t stop him from becoming consul for the 10th time where his new colleague is a guy with an unfortunate name that leads us into some dark…
It’s in Spain where we first see the new cautious Augustus. Instead of taking crazy risks, like he sometimes did when he was younger, now that he’s 38, his favourite slogans are now: “festina lente” or “make haste slowly.” This doesn’t mean he isn’t fully aware of his own mortality.
Augustus needed to decide on the size and shape of the army. How many soldiers would he need to maintain the borders and to expand them when desired? And now that the civil war is over, what kind of new discipline is needed?
Before Augustus leaves Rome, the gates of the Temple of Janus were re-opened, which means the peace is officially over. He’s going to war, to restore Roman order to his regions. But these are good old fashioned wars against foreign tribes. They aren’t civil wars. And Rome loved a good old war against barbarians.
With great reluctance, Octavian allows the Senate to refuse his resignation. It’s a brilliant piece of political theatre. And to celebrate, he gets a new name.