Synopses & Reviews
Despite his talent for self-promotion, the character of the emperor Augustus is rarely revealed and as such makes this biography unique in its presentation of Augustus the man. Pat Southern chronologically traces the life, works and times of the emperor, presenting ideology and events from his point of view to provide a compelling depiction of an extraordinary man, who was the guiding light in the transformation of the Roman Republic into the Roman Empire.
Augustus may have had an immense talent for self-promotion, but his character is rarely revealed. This biography allows us to understand Augustus the man. Pat Southern presents a rounded picture of his life, works and times, presenting events and ideology from the emperor's perspective.
In Augustus, Pat Southern reveals the man behind the many, often self-created, legends. She allows us to see the events-his transition from Julius Caesar's heir to successor, the decay of the republic and the emergence of empire-and ideologies of his time from his perspective.
Augustus had no master plan, but he had a keen sense of when to wait, when to act and when to change course as he searched for a form of government that was acceptable to the citizens and senate of Rome. He was the guiding light of the Roman Empire but also genuinely human and consequently often as unsure of what lay ahead as those he led.
Depictions of Augustus abound, (perpetually young, vigorous, and virile), but the hesitations (his cautious return to Rome after Caesar's murder) and the pain (the deaths and turmoil in his family as his own health declined) are absent. This biography of an extraordinary character is unique in its ability to restore the flesh to a figure too easily, and too often, rendered in monumental marble. It is an engrossing tale and a genuine achievement in both scholarship and writing.
monumental marble. It is an engrossing tale and a genuine achievement in both scholarship and writing.