Julius Caesar : The Great Expansionist

1681 Words Mar 8th, 2015 7 Pages
Tom Nowakowski
Dr. Pursell
Caesar Augustus: The Great Expansionist Was Caesar Augustus an expansionist? Granted, he obviously enlarged the Roman Empire through a series of conquests during his reign. However, were those conquests for defensive or offensive reasons? That is the question we must ask when examining the foreign policy of the first Roman Emperor, Imperator Caesar Divi Filius Augustus, or simply Augustus. As the founder of the Roman Empire, ruling from 27 B.C.-14 A.D., Augustus inherited a dying Republic that had previously embarked upon its own missions of expansion and conquest. By the time of his accession, the Republic was all but in name only. Solidifying his power, he was now the most powerful man in the empire. Although some of his conquests may have been defensive in nature, Augustus was undoubtedly keen on enlarging the empire just for the sake of enlargement alone. Augustus’s foreign exploits would culminate in the conquest and acquisition of Illyricum, Pannonia, Hispania, Raetia 's and Noricum 's Alpine regions, and parts of the coastline of North Africa. Notwithstanding, Augustus also annexed Egypt and made it his own personal province; it was to be ruled under “an exploitative Egyptian policy…” (Dundas, 433). The importance of the addition of Egypt cannot be overstated. Egypt was the wealthiest Roman province with a well-established urban economy; it was also a large grain supplier to the Roman Empire. In…
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