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12

I don't have a good citation for this - the wikipedia article provided by @kubanczyk is relatively decent, and highlights the role of the censor, which is probably the state oriented solution to the question. I think the question relies on modern assumptions. Roman citizens would never have needed to prove their identity. Set aside for the moment the urban ...


10

According to The Dawn of European Civilization by G. Hartwell Jones (1903), slaves in Rome were "looked upon as fit for nothing but the cross, the stake, or the arena" [for gladiatorial combat]. In Rome, the "principle that the slave was destitute of legal rights" applied. Improvements in their status were slow to come. The position of the home-born ...


10

The Premise is a bit off here. During the Crisis of the 3rd Century as well as after, the Roman army usually could win a set-piece battle over barbarians or the Persians. The difference was that the Roman army usually wasn't around where these incursions happened, and the tribes could run amok without much opposition. With the distractions of the Civil ...


9

The most common document identifying a person in Ancient Rome was diploma. Diploma identified the powers of magistrates and other office holders, including the consuls. Regarding the asked question, Roman citizenship of discharged soldiers if they had no citizenship before service was identified by a so-called military diploma The diploma was a notarially ...


9

Famously, the Ancient Egyptians knew a lot about sexuality, gynecology and genitourinary infections. Nevertheless, according to this article, there are no unambiguous description of STD's in the medical papyri of Ancient Egypt (though many reported symptoms suggest gonorrhea and some suggest pelvic infections). The same source notes that the Old Testament ...


8

The height limits weren't actually legal, they were those of the materials and construction techniques available. Without the aid of steel beams to provide tensile strength and other modern techniques and materials, something around 200 feet tall is the limit of a brick structure before the ground floor is starting to approach solid wall over the entire ...


8

The first thing to note is that fashions changed rapidly in ancient times, just like they do today and one "Phoenician" might be wearing something completely different than another one. Also, a foreigner who was doing business in Rome normally would dress just like the Romans. Wearing foreign garb in Augustan Rome would not be a recipe for success. Also, ...


7

The drifting apart of the East and West empires did contribute to the decline of the West, but it isn't true that the East did not try and help the West during this time. 1) The courts of the two young emperors Arcadius and Honorius did become more 'insular' in their thinking than in the good old days when Constantine would march all over the map. One ...


7

The Roman armies of the early to mid-Republic were largely conscript based with the conscripts serving for a relatively short period. Only land owners were eligible for conscription. Conscripts were unpaid and expected to provide their own equipment. This worked well enough for a while but as the extent of Roman territory grew it proved increasingly ...


7

As Olybrius' wiki notes, he was the grandson and great-grandson of emperors and a member of the Anicia bloodline. Perhaps this was done for the same reason Olybrius was married to his niece: Anastasius wanted to strengthen his rule through a bond with the House of Theodosius through this marriage. (Furthermore, in 512, the citizens of Constantinople ...


7

I'm not a linguist so I can't comment on whether 150 years are enough or not to thoroughly Latinize a language. However, I think I can point out that the analogy with Egypt is deeply flawed. When the Romans conquered Egypt from the Ptolemaic dynasty they took over a country that had roughly speaking two distinct populations: a "Greek" elite and semi-elite ...


7

It is known that coins were minted in the first years, if not the first, of the new Emperor's reign. The populace often learned of a new Roman Emperor when coins appeared with the new Emperor's portrait. Some of the emperors who ruled only for a short time made sure that a coin bore their image; Quietus, for example, ruled only part of the Roman Empire from ...


6

Good question; have little time now for more than a couple of thoughts: In the ancient world almost all states were, so to say, opportunistically expansionist. That is to say, almost no ruler or state ever passed an opportunity to take over the lands of a weak neighbour, either by direct force or by some form of intimidation. In that sense, Rome was not ...


6

It's a bit unclear what you mean by "nation" and "foreign rule," and if your question is "what is the longest" or, is there a place that was under foreign rule longer than the Philippines. But - we have several places, according to what appear to be your criteria, that were under foreign rule longer than the 333 years you cite for the Philippines, although ...


6

As far as I know, the Vandals never established themselves in Rome. They settled in Iberia first, and were later driven away to modern Maghreb by the Visigoths. They set up a fleet, which was instrumental to their attacks in the Western Mediterranean Sea, culminating with the sack of Rome of 455 CE. After pillaging the city for two weeks, Genseric and his ...


6

Most probably, if an official wanted to make sure what is the man's name, they asked them. Honest man has no reason to lie in this case. The list of citizens was maintained, mainly for tax purposes. It was updated during a census, an event when each father of family had to appear in person and provide all the details under an oath and before witnesses. ...


6

In the Late Republic, Marcus Licinius Crassus organized the only Fire Brigade in Rome - but only fought fires that threatened buildings that Crassus owned. According to this translation of Plutarch: Moreover, observing how extremely subject the city was to fire and falling down of houses, by reason of their height and their standing so near together, he ...


5

I visited Rome and also Pompeii last week. According to our tour guide and the evidence left by the protection provided to the ruins of Pompeii by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius, citizens of Pompeii in 79 AD did have street names and house numbers. Some even had signs in the entry way to their home warning “Cave Canem” or “Beware of Dog”.


5

Although all the above answers are relevant, there is one facet that has been overlooked concerning the provincial citizens. As Roman citizenship was granted to non-Romans in the provinces, the provincials had to reaffirm their citizenship every five years.This was simply a stating of their name and of the type of citizenship they had. (Rome had several ...


5

While I can't find much on when the sword was adopted (at least for the moment) I have found several sources that point towards answers for some of your other questions here. It appears that the method of death varied depending on who you were, or who was punishing you. The following refers to the reign of Caligula. Many men of honourable rank were ...


5

For a slave-owner if he felt sympathy to his slaves it was natural to improve their conditions and not to abuse them. Freeing the slaves was also very widespread, because it became a powerful means of political manipulation: a rich slave-owner would free a mass of slaves before an election so that they could vote for him. This led to a state prohibition of ...


5

Traditionally, Judaism was not an evangelistic religion (and so it remains among 'mainstream Jews') - Jews did not believe it was their mission to spread their faith to the world, nor is there any mention of such a mission in the Hebrew Bible according to the traditional Hebrew rendering. "And you shall be a Holy People for Me" Shemot 22:30 (one of many) To ...


5

There is a fine list here: http://historum.com/ancient-history/19034-national-ethnic-origins-roman-emperors.html During the mid and late periods of the empire most emperors were born outside of Italy most famously of Illyrian origin. The Byzantine empire(East roman empire) was more Greek than Latin so it is understandable that its emperors were not from ...


5

This drifts into a science Stack Exchange question somewhat, but consider the following: Until the advent of PVC pipes, stone aqueducts would have insulated the original (cool) temperature better than exposed metal piping. Unexposed piping would have been about equivalent to stone depending on ground temperature. If I recall correctly Roman aqueducts ...


4

Just to answer myself: According to Stephen Dando-Collins in his book "Caesar's Legion" he names them as the 2nd and the Indigena legions. (See comments though) Nic Fields in his book "The Roman Army: Civil Wars" (page 57) names these former Pompey legions as the 2nd and Vernacula legions. (Vernacula comes also from Caesar's War Commentaries). The ...


3

One example of land grant's as a reward for military service can be seen in the history of the United States. The Military Tract of 1812 was an Act of Congress passed to reward, partially compensate or encourage soldiers who fought in the War of 1812. In fact, the policy continued until 1858 when they stopped issuing the Bounty Land Warrants and the rights ...


3

Nigel Harper has given the correct chronology for Roman land grants to soldiers. There is an important point to be added, however: these land grants were always associated to the founding of a colony. That is, each such grant involved the founding of a separate settlement of veterans. I do not recall any insance where a soldier was simply given a farm or a ...


3

I think the biggest thing that separates Nero from other emperors at this time is the fact that he was actually deposed in his lifetime and thus didn't have successors telling people not to write bad stuff about him. For instance, I would love to see the source on the previous poster's point that he supposedly set people on poles and lit them on fire to ...


3

Arians were not underrepresented at the council of Nicaea Arius started saying that the Son was distinct from the father under Alexander of Alexandria, so it's probably in 313 or so. So Arianism was less than twelve years old at the Council. So the reason there were so few Arians on this council was that Arianism was a very new thing, not that they were ...


3

All this is based on HARPASTUM, from AerobiologicalEngineering.com: (Original source citations are from my own research) Harpastum was known as the Small Ball Game. The ball was "small" by virtue of its not being as large as a follis, paganica, or soccer-sized ball. This was a hard ball probably about the size and solidity of a softball. This ...



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