'A superb analysis of the military power that underpinned Augustus' rise to power, his conquests, and his ability to sustain his rule. Powell's achievement is to demonstrate just how much Augustus deserved his name of `Imperator'.'- Tom Holland, presenter of BBC Radio 4 Making History. Author of Dynasty: The Rise and Fall of the House of Caesar.
'Powell meticulously details and analyzes the composition, deployment, and actions of this army and provides a much needed resource of information that has no parallel in astute comprehensiveness. His superb treatment shows Imperator Caesar Augustus in action and helps us understand the military Augustus and his times more clearly.'- Karl Galinsky, Floyd A. Cailloux Centennial Professor of Classics, University of Texas at Austin. Author of Augustus: Introduction to the Life of an Emperor.
'Lindsay Powell provides us with valuable insights into an under-appreciated aspect of Augustus' reign, and does so in his usual highly competent and readable style.'- Philip Matyszak. Author of The Sons of Caesar: Imperial Rome's First Dynasty.
The words Pax Augusta - or Pax Romana - evoke a period of uninterrupted peace across the vast Roman Empire. In this new book Lindsay Powell exposes the truth for the lie that it is. Almost every year between 31 BC and AD 14 the Roman Army was in action somewhere, either fighting enemies beyond the frontier in punitive raids or for outright conquest; but it was also entangled in suppressing rebellions within the borders - or itself on the verge of mutiny.
Remarkably over the same period Augustus succeeded in nearly doubling the size of the Empire, outperforming either Pompey the Great or Julius Caesar for conquests. How did Augustus, a second-rate field commander, and a man known to become physically ill before and during battle, achieve such extraordinary success? Did he, in fact, have a grand strategy?
The decisions Augustus made determined the future of the empire - and of the Europe which followed. Powell reveals Augustus as a brilliant strategist and manager of war. As commander-in-chief he made changes to the political and military institutions to keep the empire together - and to hold on to power.
His genius was to build a team of semi-autonomous legati - `deputies' - to ensure internal security and to fight his wars for him. Often bound by ties of blood and marriage, but above all loyalty, these men - more than 50 of whom are profiled in this volume - fought for Augustus, who claimed for himself the credit for their achievements.
Augustus at War is lucidly written by the author of the acclaimed biographies Marcus Agrippa and Germanicus. Drawing on archaeology, art, coins, inscriptions and documents of the period, Lindsay Powell presents a new and provocative assessment of the men and events shaping a crucial period in world history, which still reverberates down to our own time.