Strategies used by Augustus to Restore Peace and Order in the Attempt to End the Cycle of Civil Wars and Internal Political Violence in Rome
Augustus Caesar is one of the most popular rulers known in the history of the world. The Roman Empire had suffered civil wars and political violence for over a century but Caesar managed to restore peace and order within a short period of time. He was a soldier and the first emperor of Rome, who was very dedicated in the endeavor to restore calm in his nation. His intention was to formulate a new government and way of life. He believed that most of the disasters that the citizens were experiencing were as a result of breakdown in religious traditions, immorality and political disorder. He felt that many individuals had neglected the old temples as well as old rites which made the gods unhappy. He therefore decided to instill moral and political polices to revive the traditional roman religion. He believed that, if individuals fulfilled religious rites, the gods would be impressed and would consequently, help to restore peace (Morey 34). The main measures that he employed in the endeavor to restore religion include; regulation of private behavior, reconstruction of public monuments and public religion and creating awareness by the use of literature that discussed the virtues of piety and morality.
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His first mission in the revival of Rome was the restoration of public monuments. These were the temples of god and their reconstruction signified renewed faith of the Romans. In addition, some more monuments were constructed to facilitate the growth of roman religion. The monuments contained symbols and meanings that Augustus wanted to pass to the public. They conveyed a sense of peace and the pride of the Romans. Coins that circulated portrayed the attractive and refreshed monuments. He revived forgotten rites, lapsed ceremonies, and revived priesthood. He also promoted religious ceremonies and encouraged individuals to attend them. This touched the hearts of many who started observing the invigorated religious canons.
Another measure that Augustus took after reconstructing public monuments and religion was the restoration of moral standards. He came up with social reforms that regulated public behavior and discouraged the decay of roman morals (Starr 6). During his reign, he introduced policies that sought to punish certain forms of immoralities including adultery. A combination of traditional morality and religion helped to transform immorality among many individuals.
The use of poetry played a crucial role in restoring order and peace within the state. The circulated literature revealed that the success of the roman military depended on their religious piety. Different writers indicated that re-adoption of traditional moral standards were vital towards the creation of a strong unified state. Obedience to the will of gods was also accentuated to be one of the major factors that determined prosperity within the society. By employing these strategies, Augustus greatly succeeded in restoring peace and order in Rome.
Augustus Words in the Res Gatae
In the Res Gatae, Augustus proudly proclaims that he was able to restore the Republic as he had promised the roman people he would, if he emerged victorious in his struggle against Mark Antony. The proclamation however contains true and false assertions in it. Augustus is known for his great contributions in reinstating the republic of Rome. His greatest achievement was the restoration of peace and order (Everitt 5). The republic had been engaged in civil wars for one hundred years, and re-establishing peace led to the maintenance of an honest and stable government which came as a result of his fight for morality. As a politician, he used his power to ensure that the republic regained its status quo. The currency system in the republic had been destroyed but Augustus managed to reinstate it. The highway connecting Rome to the far flung empire was also constructed during his reign. Other than just restoring destroyed property, he also came up with new implementations such as an efficient postal service unit. During the period when the civil war prevailed, trade had really deteriorated in the state. When Augustus took the leadership, he helped foster free trade among the provinces that comprised Rome. He also built and repaired many bridges that had been destroyed during the war. Throughout his political career, he dedicated most of his time in restoring the republic.
More often than not, many politicians are biased when required to account for their lives. Habitually, they only reveal their positive side and try to conceal the negative one. For instance, in the Res Gestae, most of the recorded events only portray the good side of Augustus life as an outstanding leader, and yet, there are claims that he misappropriated public funds when he was in power. Such funds could have been used to build the nation. Some of the monuments that were created were also not necessary. If the funds were used appropriately, the republic could have been restored much faster. He is also known to have been a dictator who came up with polices that denied individuals off their rights of freedom. All in all, human is to error and no individual is known to be faultless. It would therefore be very unfair if we underrated Augustus achievements in restoring back the glory of Rome.
Everitt, Anthony. Augustus: The Life of Rome’s First Emperor. New York: Routledge, 1904. Print.
Morey, William. Outlines of Roman History. New York: American Book Company, 1901.Print.
Starr, Chester. How did Augustus stop the Roman Revolution? 2000. Web.