Today in History, September 2nd, 31BC,
The naval forces of Octavian engage and defeat the forces of Antony and Cleopatra at the Battle of Actium, thus winning control of the Roman Republic. After the battle Octavian reorganized the Roman Republic into the Roman Empire. He would later be awarded the title “Augustus”, becoming a de facto emperor. Even though he never used the title, historians today recognize him as the first Emperor of the Roman Empire.