Marcus Agrippa [63 - 12 BCE]
Marcus Vipsanius Agrippa was the closest friend & most trusted ally of Octavian from youth. The two were about the same age, but Agrippa was not an aristocrat. His fortunes depended on Octavian's support, which he repaid with able military & administrative service. He was responsible for many of Octavian's victories over both the assassins of Julius Caesar & Marc Antony. He commanded Octavian's fleet at Actium (31 BCE). When Octavian was on a campaign, Agrippa managed the affairs of Rome. Twice Octavian appointed him consul, despite his lack of patrician credentials. In his 2nd term (27 BCE) he purged the Senate of any who opposed Octavian's nomination as emperor. When Augustus became ill (23 BCE), he named Agrippa his successor & married him to his daughter, Julia, to give him the legal right to become emperor. Although Agrippa himself did not live to assume that role, his daughter Agrippina became the mother of one emperor [Caligula] & grandmother of another [Nero].
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