Augustus first came to power after many years of bloodshed and civil war, and the Roman people longed for peace and the stabilization of society. It will be shown that Augustus achieved this goal through a series of religious, moral, and political reforms, and in doing so, legitimized and strengthened his own position in the transition from republic to empire.
Before considering the role that Augustus played in the religion of Rome, we must first look to the situation that led to Augustus reviving religion and the traditional ways. The last hundred years of the republic was full of revolution, civil war and proscriptions, a period of complete anarchy (Halliday 1922: 132). The republic had been in a state of decay due to the aristocrats putting their pursuit of power over the greater good (Shelton 1998: 226). Appian describes in his Civil Wars (5. 8. 67-8), the chaos and violence that had swept through the city of Rome during this period, leading to a complete break down of civil society. Following the battle of Actium (31 BC), Rome was left under the sole dominion of Octavian, who had the same political goals as Julius Caesar but he wished to avoid the same mistakes (Halliday 1922: 160). In naming himself dictator for life, Julius Caesar had set about the events that had led to his assassination, a fate that Augustus wished to avoid (Matyszak 2006: 71). Dio Cassius explains that Augustus aspired to be considered democratic but in reality he wished to have absolute power in