The Death of Augustus Caesar
Augustus Caesar | Index
In his later years, Augustus withdrew more and more from the public eye,
although he continued to transact public business. He was getting older and
Tiberius had been installed as his successor and by 13 A.D. he was virtually
emperor already. He had already received grants of both proconsular and
tribunician power and Tiberius's imperium had been made co-extensive with that
While traveling in Campania, Augustus died peacefully at Nola on August 19, 14
A.D. Tiberius, who was en route to Illyricum, hurried to the scene and, either,
depending on the source, arrived too late or spent a day discussing his rule
with the dying emperor.
The tradition that Livia poisoned her husband is scandalous and probably not
true. Whatever the case about these details, Imperator Caesar Augustus, adopted
son of Julius Caesar, called "Father of his Country," the man who had
ruled the Roman world alone for almost half a century, was dead.
He was given a magnificent funeral, buried in the mausoleum he had built in
Rome, and entered the Roman pantheon as Divus Augustus.
In his will, he left 1,000 sesterces to each of the men of the Praetorian guard,
500 to the urban cohorts, and 300 to each of the legionaries. In death, as in
life, Augustus acknowledged what he considered the true source of his power.
The inscription entitled "The Achievements of the Divine Augustus" (Res
Gestae Divi Augustae; usually abbreviated RG) remains a remarkable piece of
evidence deriving from Augustus's reign. The fullest copy of it is the bilingual
Greek and Latin version carved into the walls of the Temple of Rome and Augustus
at Ancyra in Galatia (for this reason the RG used to be commonly referred to as
the Monumentum Ancyranum). Other evidence, however, demonstrates that the
original was inscribed on two bronze pillars that flanked the entrance to the
Mausoleum of Augustus in Rome. The inscription remains the only first-person
summary of any Roman emperor's political career and, as such, offers invaluable
insights into the Augustan era as it was publicly presented.
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Images and Busts of
Augustus on romanemperors.com
Augustus Bibliography Resources
Augustus Caesar's World - By Foster, 347 Pages, Pub.
Augustus: The Life of Rome's First Emperor - By
Everitt, 432 Pages, Pub. 2007