Augustus • Following the murder of Julius Caesar, the assassins were forced to flee for their lives. The Second Triumvirate • Caesar's leading supporters, Octavian (Caesar's 18 year old nephew), Mark Antony, and Marcus Lepidus, joined to form a second triumvirate that would defeat Brutus and Cassius in Greece in 42 BCE. The Second Triumvirate • They divided the Roman world among themselves, but they did not share power for long. • Octavian forced Lepidus to retire from politics. [Antony was] "...carried away by her to Alexandria, there to keep holiday, like a boy, in play and diversion, squandering and fooling away in enjoyment that most costly of all valuables, time." Plutarch • Antony fell in love with Cleopatra (queen of Egypt). He began to give away parts of Roman territory to her. Civil War • Octavian used the anger of the Romans to wage war with Antony's fleet near Actium off the coast of Greece in 31 BCE. Antony abandoned his fleet and they surrendered. • Antony and Cleopatra fled to Egypt and committed suicide. • Octavian conquered Egypt, and returned to Rome as the undisputed ruler of an empire. • He became the first Emperor (absolute ruler) of Rome, and was given the title Augustus, meaning the "highest one." • He claimed to be restoring the Republic, but everyone knew the senate did whatever he wanted. • He became known as "Caesar Augustus." Many of the later Roman emperors were Octavian's descendants. "Caesar" was an important title of later Roman emperors. • Under Caesar Augustus began the Pax Romana (200 years of Roman peace and prosperity).