Last of the Naval Triumphs: Revisiting Some Key Actian Honours

A paper by Frederik Vervaet for the Ancient World Seminar at 1:00 on Monday 22 May in the Macmahon Ball Theatre, Old Arts.

On 2 September 31 BCE, Caesar Octavianus, or Imperator Caesar Divi filius, as he then wanted to be known, won a decisive naval victory over his rival Marcus Antonius and his ally Cleopatra at Actium in Greece.  While some scholars even argue that there was no such thing as a separate triumph for this victory, others consider it to be not very different from the curule triumphs that preceded and followed it on 13 and 15 Quintilis, namely those over a number of European tribes and Egypt successively.  More often than not, they also tend to downplay the significance of the so-called Actian triumph.  This paper endeavours to cast a very different light on Octavianus’s second curule triumph by virtue of a careful reappraisal of the extant literary, numismatic and epigraphic evidence.

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