The Aeneid's Impact On Augustus Rome

1174 Words 5 Pages
The Aeneid’s Impact on Augustus’ Rome

Nearing the last decades of the Roman Republic there were many underlying tensions. Much of the political unrest was due to the civil wars that caused great divides between the population and also due to instability of the government. When Augustus officially came into power and ‘restored’ the Republic to its former glory one of his major projects was to create parallels between the current era and the beginning of Rome. He wanted Romans to be proud of their history, and to easily accept him as the new dominating political leader. It was important for Augustus to be able to make a connection between his ancestry and the founding of Rome, to make his rule ordained by the gods. The Aeneid, written by the
…show more content…
One of the ways this is achieved is by the way that in the epic poem has gods addressing the country and what they have to say about the future leadership of it. During the Aeneid, Venus is worried that her son, Aeneas, will not once again retrieve his lost throne and Zeus responds reassuring her that her son will still achieve the fame that had been promised. He mentions the bloodline of Aeneas and states that, “From that noble blood will arise a Trojan Caesar, his empire bound by the Ocean, his glory by the stars: Julius, a name passed down from Iulus, his great forebear,” (Vergil, Book 1 Lines 342-4). From this quote it is told that Julius Caesar is a direct descendent of the man Aeneas, the founder of Rome according to the Aeneid. This then also makes Augustus a descendent and in turn evokes the idea of Rome coming full circle back to what it was prophesized to become from the Roman gods. The second way he depicts the Roman Empire as the endpoint in history is done by restoring the people’s faith in Augustus that is similar to the way that the Res Gestae elicits a sort of faith in Augustus by recording all the good deeds that he had done. Anchises, who is currently in the Underworld, decides to tell his son Aeneas about how the glory of Aeneas and his descendants will come to be. He specifically mentions the importance of Augustus, “Caesar Augustus! Son of a god, he will bring back the Age of Gold to the Latian fields where Saturn once held sway,” (Vergil, Book 6 Lines 914-16). He continues on to speak about Augustus’ greatness and all that he will conquer, as well as mentioning other important men that will be of great importance to Rome. This declaration allowed the people of Rome to feel some sort of comfort in knowing that under Augustus’ authority Rome would

Related Documents