This seminar will examine the Augustan Age with a double lens. For a close-up of the history and politics of the age, we will read sections of Michael Grant's History of Rome. For the literary arts, we will read poetry by Horace, Vergil, Catullus and Ovid, as well as a section of Livy's History of Rome. We will also consider the architecture and sculpture of the age.
Augustus, known first as Octavian, "ruled" Rome from 27 B.C.E to 14 C.E. with such a patient, strategic and skillful hand that the senate gave him the honorific "Augustus" (he who increases and enriches) early in his ascent to power and "Pater Patriae" (the father of the country) later in his “reign.”
Never was he a king, dictator or emperor--all part of his planned "authority without office." His support of Roman arts, architecture, and literature have left a permanent monument to his age. As Augustus himself said, "I found Rome a city of brick and left it a city of marble."