Essay, Research Paper: College Paper On World History

World History

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If anyone had hoped that the assassination of Julius Caesar would bring about
the return of Republican rule, they must surely have been disappointed, for the
political turbulence simply continued. Caesar’s assassins and his old
commanders battled for control, while orators like Cicero labored to save the
old Republic. In the and, Julius Caesar’s great nephew and adopted son
Octavian known to history as Augustus Caesar outmaneuvered and outfought
everyone. The year after his uncle’s death, Octavian and his allies of the
Caesarian faction joined forces in an alliance called the second Triumvirate. By
means of intriguer and threat, they coerced the senate into granting them and
their legions the power to rectory peace to the Roman state. In the battle of
Philippi, in northern Greece in 42b.c., Octavian and his allies defeated the
conspirators who had assassinated Julius Caesar. However, peace was not at hand.
Octavian split with his former allies, especially with Mark Antony, who was now
Cleopatra’s lover. In a climactic naval battle at Actium in 31b.c., Octavian
defeated Mark Antony. Antony’s death and Octavian’s victory effectively
ended the Roman Civil war. In the thirty seventh poems in his first book of
Odes, the poet Horace wrote in response: Nuncest bibendum nuncpede libero
pulsanda tellus! Octavian took power, and Horace hailed him as “Caesar,”
which, for the first time, becomes a horrific title. Gaius Julius Caesar
Octavianus held both military command and tribunician power he was both chief
priest. He was also politically astute enough to adorn reality with palatable
outward forms, replacing democracy with autocracy in a way that did not
antagonize the public. He called on the services of culture, religion,
literature, architecture, and the visual arts to help create a new picture of
the world, with the result that there was a politically inspired aesthetic
revolution, which led to the legalization of absolute power. In 27b.c., Octavian
formally divested himself of all authority. In response, the Senate and the
people promptly gave it back to him, voting him the title Augustus. Although he
was never officially emperor of Rome at all, within four years he had assumed
complete power including the right of veto over any law. The Republic was
formally dead. During the forty-five years that Augustus ruled, the Senate and
popular assemblies continued to meet. However, the election of consuls,
proconsuls, tribunes, and other officials required his blessing, the Senate was
filled with Augustus’ finds, and the popular assemblies seem to have lost all
political function. As commander of the armies, he rule all the vast territories
of an empire that reached to the Rivers Rhine and Danube in what is now Germany.
He commanded in the name of his uncle, Julius Caesar, and on the basis of his
own military victories, claiming that he brought peace and order after a century
of civil wars. He rebuilt temples to the Olympian gods, the “divine” Julius
Caesar, and to “Rome and Augustus.” He built roads, bridges, and aqueducts,
established a sound currency, nurtured honest government, and maintained peace,
which lasted nearly two hundred years.
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