The rule of the early Roman emperors, during which some features of republican government were retained.
- Instead of following Caesar's example, however, and making himself dictator, Octavian in 27 BC founded the principate (from princeps, ‘the leading man’), a system of monarchy headed by an emperor holding power for life.
- Piso had been accused of complicity in the death of Germanicus, the heir apparent of Tiberius [emperor 14-37 A.D.], in one of the causes célèbres of the early principate.
- They were also the armies which they and other commanders turned against each other in the civil wars which destroyed the republic and led to the establishment of a principate under Caesar's adopted son, Augustus.
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