The World of Juba II and Kleopatra Selene: Royal Scholarship on Rome's African Frontier

By Duane W. Roller | Go to book overview

9

THE EASTERN EXPEDITION WITH GAIUS CAESAR

By the end of the first century BC, Juba had been on the throne for over twenty years. But the Roman world was changing. 1 Augustus turned 60 in 3BC, and questions of succession were becoming acute. A new generation of the imperial family was reaching maturity, but events conspired to frustrate any of Augustus’ plans concerning who would follow him. Juba’s childhood friends did not seem destined to play any role: Marcellus had died in 23BC, and Tiberius, although granted a five-year Eastern imperium beginning in 6BC, almost simultaneously announced his retirement from politics and withdrawal to Rhodes. Marcus Agrippa, Augustus’ closest confidant and an obvious successor, had died in 12BC, Augustus’ sister Octavia the following year, and Tiberius’ brother Drusus two years later. Augustus’ daughter Julia, successively the wife of Marcellus, Agrippa, and Tiberius, was already involved in the intrigues that resulted in her banishment in 2BC: a liaison with the only surviving son of Antonius was her ultimate undoing. Any solution to the succession issue would, so it seemed, bypass one generation and turn to the younger one just coming to maturity at the turn of the century.

Moreover, there were external problems Augustus had to face, especially in the East. 2 In 9 or 8BC the Nabataean king, Obodas, had died, perhaps by poison. His rule had never been strong or stable, and a succession struggle broke out, with various parties appealing to Augustus for arbitration. The Parthians continued to be a threat, and were to meddle in Armenian affairs after the death of the Roman puppet ruler in 7BC, precipitating a series of crises. In Judaea the situation deteriorated as Herod the Great descended into madness, and after he died in 4BC erupted into virtual civil war, again resulting in numerous petitions to Augustus. Thus all the non-Roman territories between Syria and Egypt, and well into the eastern interior, were

1 For a recent summary of the events of these years, see J. A. Crook, “Political History, 30BC to AD14, ” CAH2 10, 1996, 70-112.

2 On the background of Augustan policy in the East, see A. N. Sherwin-White, Roman Foreign Policy in the East, 168B. C. to A. D.1 (London: Duckworth, 1984), pp. 322-41.

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The World of Juba II and Kleopatra Selene: Royal Scholarship on Rome's African Frontier
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Illustrations vii
  • Preface ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction 1
  • 1 - Juba’s Numidian Ancestry 11
  • 2 - Mauretania 39
  • 3 - Juba’s Youth and Education 59
  • 4 - Kleopatra Selene 76
  • 5 - The Mauretanian Client Kingdom 91
  • 6 - The Artistic and Cultural Program of Juba and Kleopatra Selene 119
  • 7 - Rex Literatissimus 163
  • 8 - Libyka 183
  • 9 - The Eastern Expedition with Gaius Caesar 212
  • 10 - On Arabia 227
  • 11 - The Mauretanian Dynasty 244
  • Epilogue 257
  • Appendix 1 261
  • Appendix 2 264
  • Appendix 3 267
  • Bibliography 276
  • List of Passages Cited 310
  • Index 319
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