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|Cæsar of the Roman Empire|
Cæsar (Kai-sar) was the title of the Emperor of the Romans during the time of the Empire (from 726 (or 723) to 2219), although just what authority being Emperor entails has varied over the centuries.
The power of the Cæsar began to expand after Carico, such that at the time of Domitian’s ascension, the Empire had passed from the Principate to the Patripate. The emperor was now Rome’s guiding father rather than its princep.
The Patripate was a violation of the spirit of the Office of Cæsar, and although only Damnatus Commodus proved to be a wretched ruler, under Cæsar Cruuxius in 1282(529) the Senate-Cæsar Compromised reigned back the emperor’s powers considerably, creating the New Principate.
Augustus’ and Carico’s innovations essentially removed the supreme ruler of Rome from the cursus honorum despite the laws put in place by Carico. The succession laws were a balancing act that tried to ensure a competent emperor that would counter and regulate the Senate could succeed without his dominating the patricians. Most early Cæsars were responsible enough to groom their own successors, which could come from any level of society; not being of the Senate was often considered a benefit as a means of asserting the Cæsars’ lawful self-determination and of inducting Cæsars not as entrenched in the politics of the capital cities. However, the Senate continued to grow in informal influence. Corrections were made during the interrex, but the Emperor’s autonomy continued to be watered down, especially during the Protectorate. The benefit was at least that military rebellions and attempted coups continued to have less and less effect on the Empire. This situation worked out for two centuries, but the Senate’s control over Cæsar appointment was illegal and began showing signs of destabilisation and demagoguery, and the huge military growth since the end of the G-O Civil War was creating another pressure problem, which Marcus Titus, the future Cæsar Novius, exploited to become Emperor. Novius’ shocking behaviour was then twisted further when he actually made reforms to strengthen the laws of Cæsarian succession against the Senate and usurpers such as himself, however the real authority of the Cæsars would continue to dwindle.
Carico and interexx and CS-Compromise had set up a stronger succession law but it kept getting watered down, mostly by the senate, until Novius’ cæsarship.
Residence of the Emperor
Due to the centralisation required to coordinate the resources of the Empire, even the most go-out-and-gettem Cæsars rarely had their administrations set up for long outside of Italy, and under Diocletian the first express dedicated vaposcurr rails from the Emperor’s residence were constructed in Rome.
Burial of the Caesars
Before the Cenate-Sæsar Compromise of 1282(529), all Cæsars that managed not to get themselves damnatio’d built their own tombs in or around Rome with the exception of the first four, who were all interned within the Mausoleum Augusti. Each mausoleum was unique in its artistic and architectural design, based on the Cæsar’s or his family’s preferences and on the popular designs of the time.
During the CS-Compromise, the Mausoleo Cæsaribus was decreed as part of a solution to the problem of Rome becoming choked with centuries of monuments. Enshrined as a substantial honour, all Cæsars would be entombed in the complex unless otherwise stated in their will, but the resolution also barred Cæsas from building within 100 miles(~150km) of Roma’s city limits or on any of Roma’s main vapos or via arteries.
Until the 17th Century, Cæsars, as part of their standard ritual of ascension to office and as Pontifex Maximus, would make a sacrifice at the Mausoleo Cæsaribus.
Inexhaustive list of titles accrued by the Emperors
The titles of Divus(see below) and Augustus have often vied with each other for the position of most eminent. By the decree of Cæsar Titus, in order to get the title Augustus, one must be dead, deified and truly great; Cæsar Augustus has been recognised as the first and only living Augustus. Of the eighty-seven emperors (as of 2189), only eighteen received the title, all of which were within the Patripate - aside from Carico, who was given the title posthumously despite his adamant rejection of the idea during life.
With the Senate-Cæsar Compromise and end of the Patripate in 1282(529), Augustus was officially removed from the possible titles that Cæsars could attain. Cæsar Cruuxius had held the title before the Compromise, but grudgingly agreed to relinquish it. Commodus’ possession of Augustus had already been expunged with his name at his death in 943(190), but all the other Cæsars were permitted to retain the title since it was so long ago they might as well keep it. And so Augustus won out as the more revered title, leaving Cæsar Anastasius (r.1244-71(491-518)) as the last emperor to hold it.
Carico’s reforms created a superior copy of the Censor magistracy for the emperor to hold in auditing the senate and the finances of the Empire. During the Patripate the non-Cæsarian Censor offices were abolished, but the Senate-Cæsar Compromise re-established them, the emperor maintaining his veto powers.
Originally the highest position within the Roman government, the reforms of both Augustus and Carico deeply undermined the authority of the traditional Consul office- especially after Carico’s solidification of the Cæsar magistracy. All Cæsars before the Protectorate held the title only due to its symbolic and historic aura.
After the defanging of the regular Consuls, they continued to be elected, with the emperor always being one of them and holding the Consul title from their ascension, until elections of Consuls finally discontinued in 1341(588).
Defensor et Propagator Reipublicæ (later added, ‘et Amatominium’)
Under various Emperors the title of ‘Protector and Propagator of the Republic’ was informally voiced, and the honourific was made official in 1691(938) by the Senate and Cæsar Huelastus as Rome prepared to reconquer the known world. The idea behind this title was that the Cæsar and his provinces would expand outward, pushed by the strength of both his provinces and the Republic protected within, and as the barbarian lands were cut into Cæsarian provinces, the inner ones would rise into membership in the Senate, and some day the actual Empire would be no more, with the entire world becoming the Roman Republic. Good luck with that. More along that line, Cæsar Quinctius added ‘Amatominium’ (Lover of Humanity) in 1799(1046) upon the signing of peace in Terranova and the successful completion of Project Hadrian.
Starting at Miasmata recovery, all dead legitimate cae not disgraced case get title of Divus, even in the 22C you have to really screw up to not get deified.
Imperator refers more to a man’s military power outside Urbs, and as part of Carico’s efforts to remove the position of emperor from that of the Strong Man, the usage of Imperator when addressing Cæsar was restricted to when they were in the field in active military campaigns. During the Protectorate, Imperator was officially removed from the Cæsar titles.
For Diocletian, the fifteenth Cæsar (r.1046(293)-1057(304)), Augustus was not a fine enough title, and so he instituted the Mæstatus, which would join in the Divus/Augustus competition until the end of the Patripate. In the late 21st Century Mæstatus, having changed to the indeclinable Mæsta, would return, combined with Cæsar to become the Emperor’s vocative honorific (“Mæsta Cæsar”).
The Father of the Fatherland honourific.
Pontifex Maximus and Tribune
Since Carico’s time, the office of the Pontifex Maximus was subsumed into the office of Cæsar, however, especially in later centuries, not all Cæsars were adherents to the Western Pantheon. Some followed North African rites, Eastern philosophies, or other more obscure religions. There has never been a Jewish Cæsar – plenty of Senatores though.
Even after his war with the Senate, Carico could not risk giving up the tribune's sacrosanct life, in his will he had the tribunate returned to the plebs, but affixed an identical sacrosanctity to the Pontifex Maximus. The Pontifex Maximus was then entirely absorbed into the office of Cæsar.
The First Among Equals was an honourific all Cæsars have styled.
The first four Cæsars have been grouped into Augustus’ Principate for their general adherence to the ‘first among equals’ sentiment, and served as a balance with the Senate. Augustus had created a velvet glove for the emperors to work through, but Carico, after his extensive restructuring of the Senate, managed to replace the façade with a reasonably lasting two-body governing system (The assemblies largely had only domestic powers)
The Principate was an era of opportunistic but defensive wars and internal development. Law established that Cæsars were in power until death or stepped down, but as the Cæsar office weakened, it came to be that Cæsars tended to retire before dying.
Domitian’s ascension in 834(81) changed the nature of the office to one more closely associated with a monarch. The powers of the Cæsars were most pronounced during Diocletian’s rule (293-303(1046-56)), where he demanded the prostration and adoratio (the kissing of his overly-ornate robes) of those who visited him. Although succeeding emperors of the Patripatus would not be as strict with the practice as Diocletian, the adoratio was not removed from the traditional greeting to the Cæsar until Cruuxius, before the Senate-Cæsar Compromise.
Considerable territorial and economic expansion took place under the strong influence of the Cæsars. It was also a time of extensive migrations from the eastern steppes which were successfully dealt with.
The Senate-Cæsar Compromise saw the beginning of the trend that was the future weakening of the Emperor’s independent power from the Senate. The rationale behind it was the hope that a more regulated Cæsar would lead to less corruption and damage should he turn out to be a bad choice. Weakening the power of the Emperor however would also slow the response time of the government.
The fifty years between the Miasmata and end of the G-O Civil War was a shocking turn of events. Rome, long certain of its permanence, had nearly gone to pieces; however, with the impeachment of Cæsar Arvina and changes within the Senate, the vast resources still within the empire were harness and redirected towards recovery.
Under the Protectorate the Cæsars continued to at times play important roles and had potential for great things, but they were becoming figureheads of the state and diplomats, entertaining and visiting other national dignitaries, while the Speaker of the Senate began to be considered the Head of Government. Just as OTL Monarchs became ceremonial, so too did the Cæsar, and the Speaker essentially became a prime minister.
Cæsars soon had power only outside the republican provinces, and eventually little real power at all. A result of this was that the Cæsar’s Staff, a small bureaucratic behemoth in itself, was virtually a sinecure, and was among the first cuts made to the government during the restructuring after the Final Committee of Empire.
Emperors being present on battlefields was nearly unheard of after the G-O Civil War, though they still had input on war aims and the appointment of generals.
It became established under Carico and his successors that Rome needed a vision and a policy to not decay, always having a greater plan, or else the fiascos and incompetencies of the old Senate would return, and unconstitutional usurpers such as Marius and Sulla and all the others of the civil wars would rend the empire. And so the Emperor was meant to be one that could carry on such grand visions. The system had such noble and optimistic layering over the inner mechanics that it’s a wonder it worked so well for so darn long.
The Cæsar acted as an optional(expected) supervising censor over the Senate and its own censors. As an official position within the government, the Cæsars were less dependent on private financial alliances, and could more easily fight against publican extortion and manipulation, the precursors to corporate apathy and greed
Financial officers: Largitionales
Protection: Prætorian Guards
Emperors had four main methods of making their will known, called constitutions (legislative acts):
- Decreta- were judicial decisions that the Cæsar personally decided on.
- Edicta- concerned with the strengthening/review of statutes, novel matters, and other matters of broad scope.
- Mandata- directives given to Cæsarian governors on their ways to their provinces.
- Rescripta- were the Emperor’s replies to what were essentially fan letters (quæstio). Early Emperors had staff to delegate much of the quæstio, however as time went on fewer questions of import came to be sent to the Cæsar, and by the Late Empire a Cæsar could expect to spend a large percentage of his day answering them himself. Some quæstio even came from without the Empire.
Imperial Provincial Administration
Cæsars had a wide source from which to draw their provincial governors from, including attendees, law students, merchants, scholars and former ADA members and senatores, generals, previous republican and imperial governors, and assembly representatives. Senate suggestions were readily available
By the Late Empire, Cæsarian provinces were essentially only under the Emperor’s purview by name; the Senate having de facto control over available candidates and their practices in the provinces.