The Role Of The Augustan Family Legislation In Establishing The Princeps

by Parish-Meyer, Erin Justine

Abstract (Summary)
This thesis examines the motives behind the princeps Augustus' lex Iulia de adulteriis coercendis, lex Iulia de maritandis ordinibus, and lex Papia Poppaea. Specifically, this investigation considers connections between the legislation and the Roman value pietas, contemporary literature (specifically rhetorical invective and elegiac poetry), Augustan public art, and men's apparent beliefs regarding contraception and abortion. Additionally, this study examines the laws in question, their potential effects on Roman society and how these might have served Augustus' purposes, the generally negative reactions among the elite, and Augustus' responses to their rejection of the laws. The conclusion, which challenges the widely accepted belief that Augustus'intention was to increase a declining Roman elite citizen population through legislative means, is that Augustus' motive was to strengthen the position of the princeps so that he would be better situated to pass it on to a successor of his choosing.
Bibliographical Information:


School:The Ohio State University

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:rome augustus legislation pietas women adultery elegiac poetry rhetorical invective public art roman population contraception and abortion


Date of Publication:01/01/2008

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