Gaius Octavius Thurnius, better known as "Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus," was the first emperor of the Roman Empire. Born in 63 BC, Octavian was the child of a wealthy family. His great-uncle was the famous Julius Caesar, and he was the one who helped Octavian get started in politics. Octavian accompanied Caesar at the elder man's Triumph and joined him in Spain the next year. Then, he went away to school in Epirus, which was where he learned of the dictator's assassination in 44 BC. In Julius Caesar's will, he made it clear that Octavian was to be his heir. The then-eighteen-year-old went out to avenge his newly-adopted and newly-deceased father, and take up his responsibilities. In early 31 BC, years after he had begun to use the title "Imperator," he sent his friend and top military adviser Agrippa to Greece to defeat Marc Antony and Cleopatra, the ex-friend and ex-lover of Julius Caesar, respectively. After they were captured and committed suicide, Octavian set out to murder Caesarion, the child which Cleopatra insisted was Julius Caesar's. So he annexed Egypt, took Cleopatra's fortune, and built up a large army that could support the amount of land he was pursuing.
In 27 BC, after Octavian annexed Asia Minor and proved his worthiness of the title, he changed his name to "Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus," or, what we now know as "Emperor Augustus." He continued to expand the empire throughout his lifetime, and he created a new "Roman Peace." He learned from Caesar's autocratic regime what would and would not work for his own reign as Emperor, and he managed to live a relatively long life. Although he was, reportedly, not the kindest of men, he was a revolutionary in Roman history. In 14 AD, he grew very ill and died on August 19. He was deified.