* While all this is going on with the Dalmatians, there are problems in other provinces as well.
* We hear of campaigning going on in….. Africa.
* And also this is the period when Herod’s son Archelaus is so unpopular in Judaea that he’s stripped of his throne and forced into retirement, and Judaea becomes a full Roman province.
* As I mentioned a few episodes ago, Quirinius is sent by Augustus to run the province and he hold a census which makes the Jews unhappy.
Click on the banner and use the coupon code LOC to get 25% off your first three months!
* It’s the first time they’ve had to pay taxes directly to Rome.
* And so they rise up.
* This is actually a really interesting event.
* The uprising is lead by a guy called Judas of Galilee.
* Not Jesus of Galilee.
* Not Judas Iscariot.
* Judas of Galilee.
* According to the late first century Jewish historian and turncoat Josephus, Judas of Galilee is the founder of the Zealots.
* And he was actually a messiah wannabe.
* He may or may not be the same Judas who, a few years earlier, cleaned the temple because Herod the Great defiled it with statues of Roman eagles.
* Anyway, Judas, like all of the other messiah wannabes, was executed by the Romans before his revolution could succeed.
* Quirinus shuts down the rebellion like a good Roman should – quickly and brutally. * So at the age of 69 – Ray’s favourite age – Augustus is facing serious problems on several fronts simultaneously.
* And for a brief time at least, he reverts back to young Octavian – curled up in the corner, sucking his thumb.
* Pliny claims he fell into despair, didn’t eat for four days, and kept yelling that he wished he was dead.
* I actually have a clip.
* GODFATHER – YOU CAN ACT LIKE A MAN.
* Or the ANTONY clip.
* Or both.
* When the rebellion in Illyricum broke out, he couldn’t have known how Bodacious would react when he pulled Tibbo out of Germany.
* Would he take a peace deal or not?
* And of course he knew the Illyricum warriors first hand, cuz he’d gone there himself to pacify them back when he was a youngster.
* He had Agrippa by his side at the time though.
* Now’s he’s all alone.
* All his worst fears have happened.
* Nobody by his side, no-one really to replace him, and the empire is falling apart around his ears.
* All those decades of work for nothing.
* In Italy he only had nine cohorts of praetorians, his bodyguards, the urban cohorts, the imperial fleet, and the Village People.
* IN THE NAVY
* The rest of the army was too far away to get there in time. * The funny thing is, Augustus started the year by setting up a new treasury fund for the military.
* He even kicked in 170 million sesterses of his own money.
* But don’t worry – he found that lying behind the couch.
* He also set up three former praetors to serve as the managers of the fund for three year terms of office.
* The fund was supposed to pay for the soldier’s salaried and the standard discharge bonus that was given out now instead of a land grant.
* By this time there were 28 legions.
* About 140,000 troops.
* The terms of service have been extended from 16 to 20 years.
* And then a further FIVE years as a veteran.
* The kind of solider massacred during the early stages of the rebellion in Illyricum.
* To pay for all of this, he instituted a tax of 5% on inheritances.
* This was the first direct taxation of citizen living in Italy in more than 150 years and it was VERY unpopular.
* Because Italians, like the American Founding Fathers, didn’t like paying for shit they were used to getting for free. * When news of the Illyricum rebellion happened, Augustus tried to raise a new army at home.
* For the first time in decades they held a levy but not enough volunteers appeared.
* So he resorted to limited conscription.
* He also admitted men to the army that normally would have been rejected due to their age or physical condition or occupation.
* Like a 50 year old midget podcaster would definitely not have made it into the ranks under normal circumstances.
* And slaves were demanded from the wealth citizens, and when they were handed over they were declared free, given their citizenship, and enrolled in special cohorts – – the cohortes voluntariorum civium romanorum (volunteer cohorts of Roman citizens).
* This distinguished them from the free-born cohorts. * The elite of Italy were expected to play their part as leaders.
* Augustus asked for volunteers, especially from the younger members of the senate and equestrians.
* Some volunteered.
* Some said they would go if they were forced to.
* Others refused.
* One equestrian father cut his sons thumbs off to make them unfit for service.
* I’d be like “fucking hell, you couldn’t just shoot me in the thigh or something?”
* My fucking THUMBS!?
* How am I going to jerk off without thumbs?
* DIDN’T THINK ABOUT THAT DID YOU OLD MAN.
* Right – from now on, YOU are in charge of jerking me off.
* I posted on Facebook and asked how you jerk off without thumbs.
* Amanda Kippax suggests you’d get a Fleshlight.
* Augustus had the father arrested, tried, condemned and sold as a slave.
* His property was all auctioned off.
* But wait – it gets worse.
* This guy was actually one of the publicani – the guys who collected taxes on behalf of the state.
* This guys colleagues tried to do him a solid by bidding for him.
* But Augustus ignored them and told the guy for a token price to one of his own freedmen.
* OH SHEEEEIT. * The reluctance of men from all classes not willing to serve the state was part of a wider problem.
* Fire was still a major problem in Rome, and so Augustus enlarged the fire department.
* There were now seven cohorts of vigiles.
* Most of the recruits were freedmen, partly because they were a large demographic in Rome, but also because they were the only people willing to do the dirty work.
* They were like the Mexicans of Rome.
* Augustus instituted a 2% tax on the sale price of slaves to fund the new fire dept.
* For some reason there are also good shortages in Rome at the time, and so excess people were banned from coming within 100 miles of the city.
* Some public business was suspended, senators were permitted to stay in their country villas and skip Senate meetings and an exemption was made so that votes would be valid even if a quorum wasn’t present.
* It’s crisis time in Rome. * And so with so much going wrong, it’s not surprising that the people weren’t so happy with Augustus.
* Anonymous pamphlets start circulating, openly hinting at revolution.
* We don’t know if they just targeted Augustus or other magistrates and Senators.
* The ancient sources blame it on someone obscure called Rufus, but modern scholars seem to think it might have been started by people who thought they would do better if they could undermine Livia’s descendents in favour of Julia and her family.
* Who is left? Postumus?
* Dio says the new inheritance tax was one of the reasons for the discontent.
* And because that only affected the filthy rich, historians think this rebellion was the rich trying to sow the seeds of discontent amongst the masses.
* Like Donald Trump campaigning on the Wall.
* Like he fucking cares.