Res publica constituta : Actium, Apollo and the accomplishment of the triumviral assignment

Lange, Carsten Hjort (2008) Res publica constituta : Actium, Apollo and the accomplishment of the triumviral assignment. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Abstract

This thesis will focus on the battle of Actium and the ways in which the Caesarian regime represented and commemorated this conflict and turned it to Octavian/Augustus's purpose. It will be argued that Actium was relatively more important than Alexandria in the ideology of the regime, but at the same time that the two battles must be understood together, as part of the accomplishment of the assignment of the triumvirate (constituting the res publica to order and ending the civil war). The focus will thus be on the period between 43-27 BC.

It will be suggested that the powers given back to the Senate and Roman people in 27 BC were in fact the powers of the triumvirate. The arrangements of 28-27 BC thus constitute the accomplishment of the triumviral assignment. It will be stressed that, according to the regime, Apollo had a major role to play in this development, helping Octavian to win the battle of Actium. There are many possible themes that could have been exploited, but the nexus of Actium, Apollo, civil war and peace all centre round the triumvirate and triumviral assignment.

There is a generally held consensus amongst scholars that Actium was presented as a foreign war and that Octavian/Augustus tried to conceal that it was in fact a civil war. This thesis will reflect on the issue and challenge this consensus. Antonius decided to make war on his own country and thus a foreign war turned into a civil war. Similarly, it is more or less universally held that the battle of Actium was decided due to a prearranged battle plan by Antonius and Cleopatra; from the outset they wanted to flee. Instead it will be argued that it is much more likely that the battle was decided by Cleopatra's treachery.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Supervisors:Rich, John
Uncontrolled Keywords:Ancient history, Augustan ideology, Battle of Actium
Faculties/Schools:UK Campuses > Faculty of Arts > School of Humanities
ID Code:452
Deposited By:Carsten Hjort Lange
Deposited On:01 May 2008
Last Modified:06 Feb 2009 14:43

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