And this statue of Augustus is definitely a good example of a piece of material culture that was used as part of a social strategy. The layers of the hair are arranged in comma-shaped locks across the forehead, and the neck is broad and short. Is that all there is to this sculpture? The marble statue of Augustus at Prima Porta was discovered in the villa of Livia in Prima Porta and was constructed to celebrate the Roman triumph over the Parthians in 20 B.C. During his reign, Augustus enacted an effective propaganda campaign to promote the legitimacy of his rule as well as to encourage moral and civic ideals among the Roman populace. Practice: Augustus of Primaporta . Augustan sculpture contains the rich iconography of Augustus’s reign with its strong themes of legitimacy, stability, fertility, prosperity, and religious piety. His maternal great-uncle was known other than the famous general Julius Caesar. Similarly, Roman art was closely intertwined with politics and propaganda. Augustus of Primaporta… These gods and personifications refer to the Pax Romana. While he would never have been designated as such in his own time, Augustus was nonetheless the first of a long line of monarchs that we refer to as emperors. Surrounding this central zone are gods and personifications. Making sure that he would not be perceived as a monarch, he was presented as merely the primus inter pares, i.e. Artist: unknown. If you enjoy what we do, please consider becoming a patron. Augustus of Primaporta, ... was as an age-old symbol of Apollo and as a new emblem of Augustus and since one is aware how pervasive the Apollonian propaganda became in Augustan ideology, it is no wonder that H. Kähler (1959, 12-13; 28; pl. This website might not work correctly. It is almost … Beneath the female personifications are Apollo and Diana, two major deities in the Roman pantheon; clearly Augustus is favored by these important deities and their appearance here demonstrates that the emperor supports traditional Roman religion. Augustus - Augustus - Personality and achievement: Augustus was one of the great administrative geniuses of history. It is from Primaporta, Italy, the year 20 BCE. The Forum Augustus with the magnificent Temple of Mars Ultor is a strong symbol of Augustus’ deliberate use of political propaganda. According to popular viewpoint, at the top is Caelus, the sky god. It is, in fact, a boastful portrait of a man who had, in his life, been careful to show nothing but the utmost restraint and humility. The Augustus of Primaporta sculpture serves as a creative and definitive display of his ideology as well as his power. Think about all the campaign commercials and print ads we are bombarded with every election season. It hammered home, to me, the idea that objects are not simply neutral, but are in fact imbued with meaning. You have JavaScript disabled. It is thought to be a marble copy of a possible bronze original. Video: Augustus of Primaporta Diana and … Learn more or subscribe below. Colosseum (Flavian Amphitheater) Practice: Colosseum. The article highlights the forms of propaganda Roman Emperor Augustus employed as he ascended to power. Indeed, his name – Augustus – has a distinctly religious ring to it, and many portraits intended for public consumption tended to present him as a civilian or dressed like a priest (since he also officiated). Augustus was a master statesman that took the propaganda lessons from Caesar and perfected them. Augustus of Prima Porta is a portrait statue of Augustus Caesar, the first emperor of the Roman Empire. It is almost certain that this marble statue was initially painted. As a politically crafted piece of propaganda, the Augustus of Primaporta employs all of the following EXCEPT (Learning Objective 1.4) A) scenes of soldiers preparing efficiently for war B) female personifications of conquered territories C) the return of the Roman military standard D) associations with the emperor's divine lineage. Colosseum (Flavian Amphitheater) The position was always intended to be temporary, but Caesar showed little sign of ever wanting to relinquish his powers. The original was made from bronze but copied in marble because bronze statues were melted down for weapons. Written by Josho Brouwers on 8 January 2018. Individual pages signify the copyright for the content on that page. In t… Nevertheless, the main message of the cuirass (victory, prosperity, divine sanction) remains intact. Augustus, the Principate, and Propaganda Over time, Augustus dramatically altered the balance of power in the Roman system of government without seeming to do so; indeed, in Res Gestae34.3 he explicitly claimed, “I exceeded all in influence This is especially true with portraits of Augustus, the first emperor of the Roman Empire; Augustus invoked the power of imagery to communicate his ideology. Finally, Augustus is wearing a cuirass, or breastplate, that is covered with figures that communicate additional propagandistic messages. Be sure to also visit our sister website Bad Ancient. Unlike most portraits of Rome’s first emperor, this statue depicts the emperor as a hero or a god, a military leader as well as a great politician (orator). Roman Emperor Propaganda: The Portrait of Augustus is a very good example of propaganda from a ruling emperor. Click here for more interpretations of the head. Portrait of Vespasian. This is significant because Augustus is essentially depicting himself with the perfect body of a Greek athlete: he is youthful and virile, despite the fact that he was middle-aged at the time of the sculpture’s commissioning. He was the great nephew of Julius Caesar and it was Julius who helped launch Augustus’ career. These images tell us a lot about the candidate, including what they stand for and what agendas they are promoting. Apr 13, 2016 - Augustus of Prima Porta Propaganda - Iconography on cuirass. In Roman times, an adopted child had the exact same rights and status as biological offspring. Many times that message is clear. Think about all the campaign... ‘Augustus of Primaporta’. Augustus of Prima Porta is a portrait statue of Augustus Caesar, the first emperor of the Roman Empire. He was the great nephew of Julius Caesar and it was Julius who helped launch Augustus’ career. 1. Augustus held that title until his death in 14 CE. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. We immediately sense the emperor’s power as the leader of the army and a military conqueror. His PhD thesis was published in book form as Henchmen of Ares: Warriors and Warfare in Early Greece (2013). Octavian was now free to rule the Roman Republic as its sole leader. Augustus of Primaporta was inspired by heroic Greek figures, such as Polykleitos's Spear Bearer, and portrays the ruler in the prime of his youth. Ara Pacis. And of course, Augustus is the one who is responsible for this abundance throughout the Empire. Later, I read lots of stuff on archaeological theory that helped me look even better at ancient objects. Augustus had no living heirs of his own and had, at long last, grudgingly accepted Tiberius as his son and successor. Now, a dictator was actually an official position within the Roman Republic. Assuming the role of imperator, Augustus wears military grab in a pose known as adlucotio, addressing his troops. Ascanius was given a second name, Julus, from which the clan derived its name. The Augustus of Primaporta is one of the ways that the ancients used art for propagandistic purposes. It is an exemplary piece of propaganda that exhibits the military glory and almost divine status of the first Emperor of Rome. Augustus is reminding his constituents of his so called divine lineage. There are also doubts about whether or not the trousered figure is really a Parthian. Symbolically, the gods represent divine sanction of Augustus’ peace. And speaking about military accomplishments, the scene on the cuirass deserves to be examined in closer detail. The cupid astride the dolphin sends another message too: that Augustus is descended from the gods. But in private, of course, plans were already in motion for him to be elevated to godhood after death, just as Julius Caesar had been proclaimed a divinity. 9.8: Augustus of Primaporta Last updated; Save as PDF Page ID 52848; Video: Augustus of Primaporta ; Today, politicians think very carefully about how they will be photographed. 3. Carved by expert Greek sculptors, the statue is assumed to be a copy of a lost bronze original that was displayed in Rome. This is especially true with portraits of Augustus, the first emperor of the Roman Empire; Augustus invoked the power of imagery to communicate his ideology. Finally, the figures that frame this scene are all divinities: we see e.g. The purpose is to investigate the o… Examining the statue itself, its various figurative elements, and indeed the location where it was found give us a glimpse into the many possible uses and meanings of ancient Roman art. The Prima Porta style of facial construction consists of a broad cranium and narrow chin, sharp ridged eyebrows, aquiline nose and a rounded mouth. Original Location: Prima Porta. Livia had retired to the villa after Augustus's death in AD 14. The statue stands at 6 foot 8 inches. With easy access of television and twitter, politicians took a more artistic approach to spreading their message. And, to tie in to an earlier article that I wrote, the statue would originally have been brightly painted. A prime example is Augustus, the first emperor of Rome, who, “ invoked the power of imagery to communicate his ideology” (Fischer). The emperor wears military regalia and his right arm is outstretched, demonstrating that  the emperor is addressing his troops. Secondly, Augustus had “saved” the Republic from decades of internal strife and had ushered in a new era of peace, the Pax Romana, and it’s likely that he would not have wished to emphasize his military achievements. Ara Pacis. component to solidifying Augustus’ rule. Definitely not! Despite his poor health, which left him with a frail body, he appears healthy and muscular. Venus was associated with dolphins (once myth after all suggests she was born in the sea), and her offspring included, according to some, the divinity Eros, who was known to the Romans as Cupid and by this time often depicted as a chubby little child. It is important to analyse this statue as a piece of propaganda for Augustus. the fifteenth of that month) in 44 BC, plunging the Republic once again into disorder. However, in the case of Augustus, is his message straightforward? Our content is available for free, with no paywalls or subscription fees. Mark Antony went to Egypt, where he famously cavorted with Queen Cleopatra, and was ultimately driven to suicide after their defeat at the hands of Octavian at the Sea-Battle of Actium in 31 BC. However, the naturalistic details of the sculpture make him easily recognizable and might correspond to the emperor's use of portraiture for political propaganda. Both have a similar contrapposto stance and both are idealized. Arguably one of the most important statues of Emperor Augustus, the Augustus of Prima Porta is certainly one of the best preserved portraits we have of him today. Augustus claimed to be reestablishing the senate, but in reality, he is just trying to stabilize the Roman government so he could establish himself as Rome's first real emperor in the previous historical period (the Roman Republic) had an age requirement, an old council of elders, and it was ruled by the senate, but in the Imperial Roman period Augustus was the sole ruler Augustus - Augustus - Military successes: In the following year the balance of power began to change: whereas Antony’s eastern expedition failed, Octavian’s fleet—commanded by his former schoolmate Marcus Agrippa, who, although unpopular with the influential nobles, was an admiral of genius—totally defeated Sextus Pompeius off Cape Naulochus (Venetico) in Sicily. Tiberius was a son of Livia’s from an earlier marriage. It commemorates Augustus' victory over the Parthians in 20 B.C. Figure \(\PageIndex{1}\). The statue was discovered on April 20, 1863 at the Villa of Livia owned by Augustus’ third wife, Livia Drusilla in Prima Porta. First, at Augustus’ right leg is cupid figure riding a dolphin. Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), From Republic to Empire: Rhetoric, Religion, and Power in the Visual Culture of Ancient Rome, The Power of Images in the Age of Augustus, Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International, The Column of Trajan: Propaganda of Empire in Ancient Rome, Hannah Höch and ‘the Last Weimar Beer Belly Cultural Epoch of Germany’, Classics Lost and Found: The Survival of Ancient Texts, The Devil and Mary Lease in 19th-Century Populism. Paul Zanker: Augustus und die Macht der Bilder.München, C. H. Beck 1987, ISBN 3-406-32067-8 Caesar himself, of course, was a central figure in the troubles that the Roman Republic experienced in the second half of the first century BC. Whereas the only purpose of statue of the Spear Bearer is to so show the idealism of the human body. This beautifully decorated statue, expertly carved in marble from the Greek island of Paros, was discovered 20 April 1863 during archaeological excavations at the villa of the Emperor’s wife, Livia Drusilla. Parthian king returning standards to Roman general (Tiberius?). Individuals in trousers are invariably barbarians (i.e. Our logo, banner, and trademark are registered and fully copyright protected (not subject to Creative Commons). His arm is outstretched to his troops, and he is standing in contrapposto. Somehow it's having a connection with Augustus Caesar, Tiberius Caesar, and his mother Livia. At the very bottom of the cuirass is Tellus, the earth goddess, who cradles two babies and holds a cornucopia. Overall, this is a notable piece of effective propaganda that communicates a powerful image of Augustus … I still remember the talk that one of my teachers in Mediterranean archaeology gave about this statue. The Augustus of Primaporta shows the influence of both Roman and Classical Greek works, including the Spear Bearer by Polykleitos and the Etruscan bronze Aule Metele. Carved by expert Greek sculptors, the statue is assumed to be a copy of a lost bronze original that was displayed in Rome. But he was careful not to make the same mistakes as his maternal great-uncle. Augustus or Caeser Augustus was known by many names such as Gaius Octavius, the name given to him when he was born on September 23, 63BC. Proceeds are donated to charity. Delving further into the composition of the Primaporta statue, a distinct resemblance to Polykleitos’ Doryphoros, a Classical Greek sculpture of the fifth century B.C.E., is apparent. They remained united until they quashed their opponents at the Battle of Philippi (Greece) in 42 BC, after which the three ambitious men turned on each other. And this, too, would have been another important reason that the statue was not intended for general consumption: in public, Augustus was adamant that he not be treated as a god. In the early 20th century there was radio, film, posters, and various other forms of public manipulation. Today, politicians think very carefully about how they will be photographed. At first glance this statue might appear to simply resemble a portrait of Augustus as an orator and general, but this sculpture also communicates a good deal about the emperor’s power and ideology. The reason for this was obvious to any Roman: the clan of the Julii traced back their ancestry to Ascanius, the son of Aeneas, the Trojan who had fled Troy after it had been destroyed by the Greeks and who eventually settled his people in Latium, where ultimately the city of Rome would be founded. On Twitter, user @e-pe-me-ri pointed out this article that suggests the soldier represents Roma, the personification of the city of Rome. Hence the presence of a Cupid riding a dolphin near this statue’s right leg. Ara Pacis. So far the message of the Augustus of Primaporta is clear: he is an excellent orator and military victor with the youthful and perfect body of a Greek athlete. The statue was discovered on April 20, 1863 at the Villa of Livia owned by Augustus’ third wife, Livia Drusilla in Prima Porta. Augustus of Primaporta. Starting when he was only nineteen years old, he built a powerful army through his own self motivation as well as his own money. This is a direct reference to an international diplomatic victory of Augustus in 20 B.C.E., when these standards were finally returned to Rome after a previous battle. Think about all the campaign commercials and print ads we are bombarded with every election season. Cupid is the son of Venus, the Roman goddess of love. Feb 3, 2017 - Explore Lorrie Cousins's board "Augustus" on Pinterest. Julius Caesar, the adoptive father of Augustus, claimed to be descended from Venus and therefore Augustus also shared this connection to the gods. The cuirass of the statue signifies Augustus as the leader of military power. On the right, the enemy Parthian returns military standards. In 27 BC, the Senate awarded him the name Augustus (“Exalted One”). Augustus (also known as Octavian) was the first emperor of ancient Rome. It is important to analyse this statue as a piece of propaganda for Augustus. Augustus or Caeser Augustus was known by many names such as Gaius Octavius, the name given to him when he was born on September 23, 63BC. 3. A great leader can be be many things and do many things, but few if any could call themselves worthy enough to stand next to Augustus. Augustus could thus lay claim to the same divine ancestry as Julius Caesar himself. Augustus from Primaporta. Further reading In German. Even at a young age of 12 years old, Augustus … Some content is licensed under a Creative Commons license, and other content is completely copyright-protected. Practice: Ara Pacis . This is especially true with portraits of Augustus, the first emperor of the Roman Empire; Augustus invoked the power of imagery to communicate his ideology. Museum: Vatican Museums. Similarly, Roman art was closely intertwined with politics and propaganda. Overall, this statue is not simply a portrait of the emperor, it expresses Augustus’ connection to the past, his role as a military victor, his connection to the gods, and his role as the bringer of the Roman Peace. We believe that rigorous research into the past should be widely available and easy to find. See "Terms of Service" link for more information. It is the sculpture of a handsome and young ruler, namely, Augustus, sporting an ornamented cuirass and a tunic, with the figure of Cupid riding a dolphin on his side. It may also explain why Augustus’ feet are bare: heroes as well as gods were routinely depicted as wandering the world without any kind of shoes to protect their feet. The statue was found in the villa of Augustus’ wife Livia at Prima Porta, a few kilometres north of Rome. Today, politicians think very carefully about how they will be photographed. This is the currently selected item. The sculpture is now displayed in the Braccio Nuovo of the Vatican Museums. He also has images of the God of the sky and the God of the sun on his breastplate, indicating that he is a divine presence. The cuirass of the statue signifies Augustus as the leader of military power. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! He emerged victorious after a bloody civil war, and was appointed dictator. His maternal great-uncle was known other than the famous general Julius Caesar. Tellus is an additional allusion to the Pax Romana as she is a symbol of fertility with her healthy babies and overflowing horn of plenty. Even at a young age of 12 years old, Augustus was giving public speeches. This original, along with other high honors, was devoted to Augustus by the Senate in 20 BC and set up in a public place. Discussion The statue, Vatican Museum, was found April 20, 1863 in the area of First Gate along the Via Flaminia, in the villa belonging to Livia Drusilla, the third wife of Emperor Augustus. They also referred to him as the Princeps (“First Head”, i.e. Erika Simon: Der Augustus von Prima Porta.Bremen, Dorn 1959. The figures on the breastplate have a cosmic setting. Gemma Augustea. The dolphin became a symbol of Augustus’ great naval victory over Mark Antony and Cleopatra at the Battle of Actium in 31 BCE, a conquest that made Augustus the sole ruler of the Empire. One of the more interesting monuments made during the reign of Rome’s first emperor Augustus (r. 27 BC–AD 14) is a statue referred to as the “Augustus of Prima Porta”. Augustus of Primaporta. (the sculpture gets its name from the town in Italy where it was found in 1863). The original was made from bronze but copied in marble because bronze statues were melted down for weapons. To celebrate his defeat of Caesar’s assassins, he contructed a temple to Mars Ultor (i.e. Gemma Augustea. Augustus of Primaporta, first century CE. Caesar himself, of course, was a central figure in the troubles that the Roman Republic experienced in the second half of the first century BC. The Primaporta Augustus set the tone for this new style, triumphant but artificial. The first emperor of the Roman Empire was born Gaius Octavius Thurinus, or Octavius for short. Caelus at top flanked by Sol, Aurora and Luna. Preparations for a Sacrifice. Augustus of Primaporta 1st Century CE White Marble Rome, Italy. Augustus of Prima Porta (Italian: Augusto di Prima Porta) is a 2.03m [1] high marble statue of Augustus Caesar which was discovered on April 20, 1863, in the Villa of Livia at Prima Porta, near Rome.Augustus Caesar's wife, Livia Drusilla, now known as Julia Augusta, retired to the villa after his death. Augustus of Primaporta, first century CE. Some of these outlets also serve as mediums for watchdogs in the modern era to keep politicians in check. Originally published by Smarthistory, 11.06.2020, under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International license. In this marble freestanding sculpture, Augustus stands in a contrapposto pose (a relaxed pose where one leg bears weight). Support us on Patreon for as little as $2 a month. material culture, including statues, are “actively employed as part of social strategies” (as per his own website). 2. The figures on the breastplate have a cosmic setting. Roman Emperor Propaganda: The Portrait of Augustus is a very good example of propaganda from a ruling emperor. The statue of Augustus of Primaporta uses idealism and realism to depict Augustus as a mighty ruler showing him clothed and with Cupid. Stay up-to-date with our monthly newsletter. Augustus of Prima Porta Angela Elaine L. Jacinto, 2nd Year/1st Semester, Computer Engineering, College of Engineering, National University, Manila Augustus of Prima Porta is not an ordinary sculpture that made by the Greeks, nor it is a copy of bronze original. Patron: Roman Senate . Period: ancient Roman. Portrait of Vespasian. The marble statue was made shortly after Augustus’ death. meant to be a luxurious possession for an imperial patron. During his reign, Augustus enacted an effective propaganda campaign to promote the legitimacy of his rule as well as to encourage moral and civic ideals among the Roman populace. Ancient Rome teemed with art that was closely intertwined with politics and propaganda. Now, a dictator was actually an official position within the Roman Republic. The face renders a youthful emperor, even though the statue was constructed when Augustus was about forty years of age. Overall, this statue is not simply a portrait of the emperor, it expresses Augustus’ connection to the past, his role as a military victor, his connection to the gods, and his role as the bringer of the Roman Peace. The sculpture modeled after him, Augustus of Primaporta, holds both artistic and political significance in Ancient Roman history. According to Simon, the portrayal of Aeneas making the sacrifice in addition to the similarity of the two altars is strong motive in the creation of the Ara Pacis (24). Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts by email. Furthermore, the horn of plenty, held in Mother Earth’s hands, symbolizes the wealth that Augustus’ peace has brought to the Roman Empire. In 27 BCE Augustus “restored” the republic of Rome, though he himself retained all real power as the princeps, or “first citizen,” of Rome. Carved by expert Greek sculptors, … To be sure, this was a political win, not a militarily one, since the return of the standards had been brokered along diplomatic channels. This is the currently selected item. The breastplate is covered with figures and is a complex of Augustan and Tiberian propaganda. Augustus, in his mastery of propaganda, picked two of the most important and strongly aligns himself to them. Similarly, Roman art was closely intertwined with politics and propaganda. Augustan sculpture contains rich iconography of Augustus's reign with strong themes of legitimacy, stability, fertility, prosperity, and religious piety. The scene on the breastplate emphasizes a major victory over an old enemy, the Parthians, and the prosperity that his Pax Romana brought the world. Augustus of Prima Porta is a full-length portrait statue of Augustus Caesar, the first emperor of the Roman Empire. Tellus at bottom. Similarly, Roman art was closely intertwined with politics and propaganda. His power over the military is evident. One of Augustus’ most famous portraits is the so-called Augustus of Primaporta of 20 B.C.E. First of all, Augustus carefully presented an image of himself as restraint and sober, as well as pious. See more ideas about Roman sculpture, Emperor augustus, Roman art. Our work here is made possible thanks in part to the generous support of our Patreon backers. Some believe it may have been a copy of a bronze statue that celebrated his victory over the Parthians in 20 BC. Art is often used in propaganda regimes in order to convey a certain message. Lepidus was forced into exile. He didn’t make the same mistakes that led to the death of his maternal great-uncle Julius Caesar, nor was he as brazenly ambitious as the men who had fuelled the civil wars. In fact, in this portrait Augustus shows himself as a great military victor and a staunch supporter of Roman religion. Furthermore, by modeling the Primaporta statue on such an iconic Greek sculpture created during the height of Athens’ influence and power, Augustus connects himself to the Golden Age of that previous civilization. The message is that the sun is going to shine on all regions of the Roman Empire, bringing peace and prosperity to all citizens. Ara Pacis. In the central zone of the cuirass are two figures, a Roman and a Parthian. The Augustus of Prima Porta gives a good idea of how ancient statuary was imbued with meaning. The first emperor of the Roman Empire Augustus, aware of the effects in political art, utilized art to communicate his ideologies. In many ways, Tiberius was the opposite of Augustus: an experienced general but a poor statesman, who eventually withdrew from public life and came to care little about what people thought about him. Practice: Augustus of Primaporta . In times of crisis, a dictator would be appointed to bring order to chaos. “Mars the Avenger”), which featured statues of Mars (the god of war), his paramour Venus (goddess of love), as well as a statue of the recently deified Julius Caesar himself. The Primaporta statue has the body of the Doryphoros of Polykleitos, the pose of a magnanimous yet authoritative statesman, and the uniform of the military leader, imperator. So, needless to say, he had quite a large following. Well, it was large enough that there were several monuments made for him like Augustus of Primaporta which is the particular work of focus for this discussion. the sky god at the top and Mother Earth near the bottom. It is from Primaporta, Italy, the year 20 BCE. See the bottom of each page for copyright information. On the sides of the breastplate are female personifications of countries conquered by Augustus. The soldier does appear to have feminine features, and the type of helmet is often associated with Roma. Portrait of Augustus from Prima Porta. One of the writers I really got into was Ian Hodder, a prominent archaeologist, who argues that material culture is “meaningfully constituted”, i.e. Augustus of Prima Porta Angela Elaine L. Jacinto, 2nd Year/1st Semester, Computer Engineering, College of Engineering, National University, Manila Augustus of Prima Porta is not an ordinary sculpture that made by the Greeks, nor it is a copy of bronze original. Goddess, who cradles two babies and holds a cornucopia brave and godlike man with the Prima Porta is remarkably... I read lots of stuff on archaeological theory that helped me look even better at ancient objects interpreted representing... Propaganda, picked two of the Roman soldier has been interpreted as Tiberius... Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International license and personifications refer to the same divine ancestry as Julius Caesar himself his health... 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Vatican Museums of love 44 BC, the gods represent divine sanction of Augustus … the Case augustus of primaporta propaganda ’!

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