Augustus' Financal Reforms

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Augustus' Financal Reforms
2014-06-10 10:04:28
Classics Augustus

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  1. Why were financial reforms needed?
    Because by the end of the civil war the public finances were in chaos. The treasury was temporarily bankrupt as there was no efficient taxation system, budget or census records
  2. What were Augustus' financial aims
    His financial aims were to stabilise conditions after the civil war, to carefully scrutinise all sources of income and to create sufficient income to run a huge empire
  3. What was the empire's biggest expense
    The army was the empire's biggest expense as not only did the troops have to be paid but they also had to be provided with pensions at the end of their service
  4. What were the other main sources of expense
    The provision of grain at reduced prices, public works, public religion and shows for the people all required vast sums of money
  5. How do we know the importance Augustus placed on his financial reforms
    In sections 15-24 of the res gestae be outlines the donations made from his personal wealth to the state, the military treasury and the plebs among other things
  6. Why is the res gestae not a completely reliable source for finding out about augustus' financial reforms
    • The res gestae selects only the most outstanding examples of his generosity to the people of Rome and does not include his gifts to the provinces, bar in section 24
    • He so doesn't mention the occasions where he used public money as this would have gained no credit for this
  7. Sources of Augustus' personal wealth
    • Inheritance from his natural and his adoptive father
    • The treasures from the ptolomies of egypt
    • Booty from various wars
    • Property confiscated during the proscriptions
    • Legacies from friends
  8. Money in Augutsus' will
    Suetonius states that Augustus left huge donations and bequests to the roman people and left 1.5 million gold peices to his heirs
  9. Quote in the appendix of the res gestae about financial donations
    The appendix enumerates all the buildings, both religious and secular, that he had built or restored at great cost. The total sum of all his donations was "beyond counting"
  10. Augustus new systematic regulations of revenue
    • Censuses
    • New taxes and methods of collection
    • Minting of coins
    • Annual statements
  11. What were fisci
    Provincial chests or treasuries into which taxes were paid. Augustus could withdraw from them
  12. The two treasuries
    • Public
    • Military