Augustus

Reece Period attributed: Period 1

Obverse image of a coin of Augustus

Member of the Julio-Claudians dynasty.

Coins for this issuer were issued from -31 until 14.

Augustus (born Gaius Octavius) was the great nephew and adopted son of Julius Caesar. In the years immediately after Caesar's assassination in 44 BC, Augustus and Mark Antony (Caesar's closest friend and ally) set out to avenge his murder. Within a decade, however, relations between the two had broken down and the Roman World was plunged into civil war. By 31 BC Augustus had emerged as the undisputed victor: Rome's first emperor.

Rome had been a republic for centuries since the fall of its kings and was ruled by the Senate (its supreme political body) and the Roman people. Augustus was anxious that his political position was acceptable to everyone. He based his powers on traditional political offices and presented himself as the "first man" of the Senate rather than as a king. In this way he cleverly preserved the ideals of the Roman Republic.

In about 23 BC, Augustus reformed the coinage. He continued to produce the gold aureus and the silver denarius, but introduced a series of new copper-alloy denominations. The new coinage system was more advanced than anything the ancient world had seen.

Latest examples recorded with images

We have recorded 155 examples.

Record: IOW-BDC677
Object type: COIN
Broadperiod: ROMAN
Description: A complete Roman silver denarius of August…
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Record: HAMP-5127B8
Object type: COIN
Broadperiod: ROMAN
Description: Copper alloy as of C. Plotius Rufus under …
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Record: KENT-D89B81
Object type: COIN
Broadperiod: ROMAN
Description: A Roman silver denarius of Augustus (27 BC
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Record: WMID-9FB5E2
Object type: COIN
Broadperiod: MODERN
Description: A complete zinc alloy modern copy of a Rom…
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Other resources about Augustus

View all coins recorded by the scheme attributed to Augustus.

Information from Wikipedia

Notable commands

Commander during battles

  • Battle of Philippi : Philippi, Macedonia
    The Battle of Philippi was the final battle in the Wars of the Second Triumvirate between the forces of Mark Antony and Octavian (of the Second Triumvirate) and the forces of Julius Caesar's assassins Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus in 42 BC, at Philippi in Macedonia. The Second Triumvirate declared this civil war to avenge Julius Caesar's murder.The battle consisted of two engagements in the plain west of the ancient city of Philippi. The first occurred in the first week of October; Brutus faced Octavian, while Antony's forces were up against those of Cassius. At first, Brutus pushed back Octavian and entered his legions' camp. But to the south, Cassius was defeated by Antony, and committed suicide after hearing a false report that Brutus had also failed. Brutus rallied Cassius' remaining troops and both sides ordered their army to retreat to their camps with their spoils, and the battle was essentially a draw, but for Cassius' suicide. A second encounter, on 23 October, finished off Brutus's forces, and he committed suicide in turn, leaving the triumvirate in control of the Roman Republic.
  • Battle of Philippi : Philippi, Macedonia
    The Battle of Philippi was the final battle in the Wars of the Second Triumvirate between the forces of Mark Antony and Octavian (of the Second Triumvirate) and the forces of the tyrannicides Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus in 42 BC, at Philippi in Macedonia. The Second Triumvirate declared this civil war to avenge Julius Caesar's assassination.The battle consisted of two engagements in the plain west of the ancient city of Philippi. The first occurred in the first week of October; Brutus faced Octavian, while Antony's forces were up against those of Cassius. At first, Brutus pushed back Octavian and entered his legions' camp. But to the south, Cassius was defeated by Antony, and committed suicide after hearing a false report that Brutus had also failed. Brutus rallied Cassius' remaining troops and both sides ordered their army to retreat to their camps with their spoils, and the battle was essentially a draw, but for Cassius' suicide. A second encounter, on 23 October, finished off Brutus's forces, and he committed suicide in turn, leaving the triumvirate in control of the Roman Republic.
  • Perusine War : Perusia
    The Perusine War was a civil war of the Roman Republic, which lasted from 41 to 40 BC. It was fought by Lucius Antonius and Fulvia to support Mark Antony against his political enemy (and the future Emperor Augustus), Octavian.Fulvia, who was married to Mark Antony at the time of the civil war, felt strongly that her husband should be the sole ruler of Rome instead of sharing power with the Second Triumvirate, especially Octavian.Fulvia and Antony's younger brother, Lucius Antonius, raised eight legions in Italy. The army held Rome for a brief time, but was then forced to retreat to the city of Perusia. During the winter of 41–40 BC, Octavian's army laid siege to the city, finally causing it to surrender due to starvation. The lives of Fulvia and Lucius Antonius were both spared, but Antonius was sent to govern a Spanish province. Fulvia was exiled to Sicyon. Many inhabitants of the city were then butchered; they and others lost their land to veteran soldiers, as grimly remembered by the poet, Sextus Propertius, at the end of his first book of Elegies.Fulvia died in 40 BC, and with her death came a peace between Antony and Octavian. The peace would be short lived, however, as a civil war began a few years later.
  • Perusine War : Rome
    The Perusine War was a civil war of the Roman Republic, which lasted from 41 to 40 BC. It was fought by Lucius Antonius and Fulvia to support Mark Antony against his political enemy (and the future Emperor Augustus), Octavian.Fulvia, who was married to Mark Antony at the time of the civil war, felt strongly that her husband should be the sole ruler of Rome instead of sharing power with the Second Triumvirate, especially Octavian.Fulvia and Antony's younger brother, Lucius Antonius, raised eight legions in Italy. The army held Rome for a brief time, but was then forced to retreat to the city of Perusia. During the winter of 41–40 BC, Octavian's army laid siege to the city, finally causing it to surrender due to starvation. The lives of Fulvia and Lucius Antonius were both spared, but Antonius was sent to govern a Spanish province. Fulvia was exiled to Sicyon. Many inhabitants of the city were then butchered; they and others lost their land to veteran soldiers, as grimly remembered by the poet, Sextus Propertius, at the end of his first book of Elegies.Fulvia died in 40 BC, and with her death came a peace between Antony and Octavian. The peace would be short lived, however, as a civil war began a few years later.
  • Sicilian revolt : Sicily
    The Sicilian revolt was a revolt against the Second Triumvirate of the Roman Republic which occurred between 44 BC and 36 BC. The revolt was led by Sextus Pompey, and ended in a Triumvirate victory.
  • Battle of Vellica : Vellica, Cantabria, Hispania
    The Battle of Vellica was a battle of the Cantabrian Wars fought in the year 25 BC by the emperor Augustus and his Roman legions against the Cantabri forces who resided in the area. The most generally accepted location for the battle is the area around Monte Cildá, Olleros de Pisuerga, Palencia.
  • Battle of Vellica : Vellica, Cantabria, Hispania
    The Battle of Vellica was a battle of the Cantabrian Wars fought in the year 25 BC by the emperor Augustus and his Roman legions against the Cantabri forces who resided in the area. The most generally accepted location for the battle is the area around Monte Cildá, Olleros de Pisuerga, Palencia.
  • Siege of Aracillum (25 BC) : Aracillum, Cantabria, Hispania
    The Siege of Aracillum was a siege of the Cantabrian Wars that occurred in 25 BC. The battle took place between the forces of the Roman Empire, which consisted of five Roman legions commanded by Gaius Antistius Vetus and the forces of the Cantabri people, who had fortified the hill fort at Aracillum. The battle resulted in a Roman victory.Aracillum was subjected to a fierce siege by the Romans, who would eventually take the settlement. The Roman commander, Gaius Antistius Vetus had taken charge of Caesar's legions when Augustus had fallen ill on the campaign (though Caesar did conduct a majority of the battles in this campaign himself).The hill fort was able to withstand the Roman forces for some time, but the fort was eventually surrounded by three Roman camps. The Romans constructed more than 20 kilometers of walls, battlements and trenches to trap the defenders inside the fort and to prevent any aid or reinforcements from gaining entrance. In the face of starving to death, many of the Cantabri warriors opted instead to commit suicide rather than dying of starvation or being taken prisoner and being turned into slaves.Traditionally identified as Aradillos (Campoo de Enmedio), there has never been any concrete discovery of the actual location of the battle.
  • Siege of Aracillum (25 BC) : Aracillum, Cantabria, Hispania
    The Siege of Aracillum was a siege of the Cantabrian Wars that occurred in 25 BC. The battle took place between the forces of the Roman Empire, which consisted of five Roman legions commanded by Gaius Antistius Vetus and the forces of the Cantabri people, who had fortified the hill fort at Aracillum. The battle resulted in a Roman victory.Aracillum was subjected to a fierce siege by the Romans, who would eventually take the settlement. The Roman commander, Gaius Antistius Vetus had taken charge of Caesar's legions when Augustus had fallen ill on the campaign (though Caesar did conduct a majority of the battles in this campaign himself).The hill fort was able to withstand the Roman forces for some time, but the fort was eventually surrounded by three Roman camps. The Romans constructed more than 20 kilometers of walls, battlements and trenches to trap the defenders inside the fort and to prevent any aid or reinforcements from gaining entrance. In the face of starving to death, many of the Cantabri warriors opted instead to commit suicide rather than dying of starvation or being taken prisoner and being turned into slaves.Traditionally identified as Aradillos (Campoo de Enmedio), there has never been any concrete discovery of the actual location of the battle.
  • Liberators' civil war : Macedonia (Roman province)
    The Liberators' civil war was started by the Second Triumvirate to avenge Julius Caesar's murder. The war was fought by the forces of Mark Antony and Octavian (the Second Triumvirate members) against the forces of Caesar's assassins Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus in 42 BC.
  • Battle of Mutina : Northern Italy
    The Battle of Mutina was fought on April 21, 43 BC between the forces of Mark Antony and the forces of Gaius Vibius Pansa Caetronianus and Aulus Hirtius, who were providing aid to Decimus Junius Brutus Albinus.

Monumental building

  • Mausoleum of Augustus
    The Mausoleum of Augustus (Italian: Mausoleo di Augusto) is a large tomb built by the Roman Emperor Augustus in 28 BC on the Campus Martius in Rome, Italy. The Mausoleum is located on the Piazza Augusto Imperatore, near the corner with Via di Ripetta as it runs along the Tiber. The grounds cover an area equivalent to a few city blocks, and nestle between the church of San Carlo al Corso and that Museum of the Ara Pacis.The interior of the Mausoleum is no longer open to tourists, as looting, time, and neglect have stripped the ruins of marbled elegance. Even as ruins, it is a dominating landmark on the northern side of the Campus Martius.The Mausoleum was one of the first projects initiated by Augustus in the city of Rome following his victory at the Battle of Actium in 31 BC. The mausoleum was circular in plan, consisting of several concentric rings of earth and brick, planted with cypresses on top of the building and capped (possibly, as reconstructions are unsure at best) by a conical roof and a statue of Augustus. Vaults held up the roof and opened up the burial spaces below. Twin pink granite obelisks flanked the arched entryway; these now stand, one at the Piazza dell'Esquilino (on the northwest side of the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore) and other at the Quirinal fountain. The completed Mausoleum measured 90 m (295 ft) in diameter by 42 m (137 ft) in height.A corridor ran from the entryway into the heart of the Mausoleum, where there was a chamber with three niches to hold the golden urns enshrining the ashes of the Imperial Family. Remains buried inside the Mausoleum before Augustus include those of Marcus Claudius Marcellus (who was the first to be buried there, in 23 BC), Marcus Agrippa in 12 BC, Nero Claudius Drusus in 9 BC, Octavia Minor (the sister of Augustus) in 9 or 11 BC, Gaius and Lucius, grandsons and heirs of Augustus. After the emperor himself, the Mausoleum hosted the ashes of Livia (Augustus' wife), Germanicus, Agrippina the Elder, Agrippina's daughter Julia Livilla, Nero (son of Germanicus), Drusus Caesar (son of Germanicus), Caligula, Tiberius, Drusus Julius Caesar (son of Tiberius), Nero Claudius Drusus and Antonia Minor (parents of Claudius), Claudius, Britannicus (the son of Claudius), the embalmed body of Poppaea Sabina wife of Nero, Julia Domna (later moved to Mausoleum of Hadrian), and Nerva, the last emperor for whom the mausoleum was opened.In 410, during the sack of Rome by Alaric, the pillaging Visigoths rifled the vaults, stole the urns and scattered the ashes, without damaging the structure of the building (Lanciani). LacusCurtius (referenced below) claims however that, "The story of its plundering by Alaric in 410 has no historical foundation, and we know nothing of its destruction." In the Middle Ages the artificial tumulus was fortified as a castle— as was the mausoleum of Hadrian, which was turned into the Castel Sant'Angelo— and occupied by the Colonna family. After the disastrous defeat of the Commune of Rome at the hands of the Count of Tusculum in 1167, the Colonna were disgraced and banished, and their fortification in the Campo was dismantled. Thus it became a ruin.It was not until the 1930s that the site was opened as a preserved archaeological landmark along with the newly moved and reconstructed Ara Pacis nearby. The restoration of the Mausoleum of Augustus to a place of prominence featured in Benito Mussolini's ambitious reordering of the city of Rome which strove to connect the aspirations of Italian Fascism with the former glories of the Roman Empire. Mussolini viewed himself especially connected to the achievements of Augustus, seeing himself as a 'reborn Augustus' ready to usher in a new age of Italian dominance.
  • Temple of Caesar
    The Temple of Caesar or Temple of Divus Iulius (Latin Aedes Divi Iuli or Templum Divi Iuli, Italian Tempio del Divo Giulio) also known as Temple of the Deified Julius Caesar, delubrum, heroon or Temple of the Comet Star, is an ancient structure in the Roman Forum of Rome, Italy, located near the Regia and the Temple of Vesta.
  • Milliarium Aureum
    The Miliarium Aureum (Classical Latin: [mi?ll??a?r??m ?awr??m], golden milestone) was a monument, probably of gilded bronze, erected by the Emperor Caesar Augustus near the temple of Saturn in the central Forum of Ancient Rome. All roads were considered to begin from this monument and all distances in the Roman Empire were measured relative to that point. On it were perhaps listed all the major cities in the empire and distances to them. According to Schaaf, the phrase "all roads lead to Rome" is a reference to the Milliarium Aureum, as the specific point to which all roads were said to lead. Today, the base of the milestone might still exist in the Roman Forum.
  • Iulia Valentia Banasa
    Colonia Iulia Valentia Banasa was one of the three colonias in Mauretania Tingitana (in northern Morocco) founded by emperor Augustus between 33 and 25 BC. for veterans of the battle of Actium.

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