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UNIVERSAL HISTORY-THE ANCIENT WORLD.

measures thereat debated which were of highest importance to the progress

of the state.

In B. C. 29 Octavianus was again chosen to the consulship; and to preserve

the old constitutional form, Agrippa was associated with him as a

colleague. Octavianus was honored with the title Princeps Senatus-an old

distinction which had not been observed since the death of Catulus. He,

however, adopted the role of the diffident magistrate, and was in the habit

of resigning many of the honors voted to him by the Senate. Thus in B. C.

28 he renounced those powers which he had assumed on the formation of the

triumvirate; and in the following year he went so far as to express a wish-

which he was very far from entertaining-to give up his prerogatives

altogether. The obsequious Senate, however, insisted that he should remain

in power, and he consented to retain the military command in the conduct of

foreign wars for a period of ten years. The home districts, however, of the

Empire, under the name of Senatorial Provinces, were allowed to remain

under the control of that body from which they derived their name; while

the outlying regions, known as Imperial Provinces, fell to the exclusive

government of the emperor. Into the former divisions of the state

proconsuls were sent as governors, after the old Republican method; while

to the latter executive offices were assigned by appointment of the Caesar.

It was a part of this shrewd policy-since the Senatorial Provinces were in

no need of military defense-to throw the command of the entire army into

the hands of Augustus. In consideration of these apparent concessions and

magnanimity, the people heaped upon him still additional honors and titles.

In the year B. C. 23, his artful procedures were still further heightened

in effect by an attack of fever, which gave him an opportunity, after his

recovery, to acquaint the Senate with the provisions of his will. He had

taken care, in the event of his death, not to name a successor, but to

resign all his prerogatives to the Senate. The bait of the imperial hook

was now eagerly taken by the unsuspicious and servile senators, and it was

voted to grant to Augustus a bodyguard of twelve lictors, and a curule

chair for life between the two occupied by the nominal consuls. This step

so greatly strengthened and confirmed Octavianus in his offices that many

historians have chosen this year as the true date of the founding of the

Empire.

The position of the Caesar was now such as to give him an almost exclusive

monopoly of the powers of the state. He might take the initiative in

proposing laws, though as yet the completion of legislative acts rested

with the Senate. In B. C. 19, however, the full right of issuing an edict

having the force of law was granted by the shadowy body which still

continued to exercise the phantom functions of government. There thus

remained only the power of pontifex maximus to complete in Augustus the

impersonation of the state; and