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Questions tagged [roman-republic]

Questions about the period of ancient Roman civilization when the government operated as a republic from 509 BC to 27 BC.

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Why was Scipio the Younger accused of wishing to abolish Tiberius Gracchus laws?

In the Wikipedia page of Gaius Gracchus you can find this paragraph, which I find particularly confusing: When Scipio the Younger agreed to represent the Italian allies, who were protesting the ...
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2answers
288 views

Why Marcus Aurelius did not restore the Roman Republic? [closed]

I'm wondering why Marcus Aurelius, who could be considered as one of the most wise emperors of Roman Empire, did not restore Roman Republic constitutions? I read somewhere that the functionality of ...
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1answer
82 views

Do we have a notion of how common private bathing facilities were, in Rome at late Republican times?

For example, there are small private bathtubs in Pompeii, but this is about 150 years later and in a period that practices were changing, as more people became wealthy enough to have such things. My ...
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1answer
163 views

What cult images are likely to be found in a Second Punic war era Roman field camp?

Were cult images (e.g. statues of gods) carried by a Roman army (or its commander) around 200 BC? If so, which gods? And were would they be kept while in camp? (I am not referring to items individual ...
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312 views

What was the legal process of raising a legion in late Republican Rome?

I've read some about both the Roman army and the Late Republican period, but realized that, while I understand well enough how legions worked in the field, I have only a very incomplete idea of who ...
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1answer
244 views

Was every Roman citizen part of a curia?

In a book by German historian Klaus Bringmann, I read that during the regal period, the whole population was divided into three tribes. He furthermore states that each tribe was divided into 10 curiae ...
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2answers
567 views

Why didn't Caesar hire free men to do slave work?

So one of Caesar's significant policies in Roman politics was helping the peasants have land and work to make a living. Wonder why didn't he push laws that restricted the use of slaves and made those ...
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1answer
553 views

How did Carthage Lose the First Punic War to Rome?

(264 to 241 BC) Carthage seemed to have many significant strategic advantages at the beginning of the conflict. Carthage Generals were both experienced and accomplished. Carthage had a larger and ...
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1answer
285 views

How did early Rome mobilize?

I have read that before the reforms of Marius, Rome produced her armies by conscripting them from the citizens by drawing of lot, with every recruit owning his own equipment. My questions are about ...
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1answer
99 views

Were debts owed or outstanding debts factored into the Roman census?

In the Roman Republic were debts and loans taken into account by the Censors when calculating the worth of a citizen's property? If yes, how were these checked?
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1answer
691 views

What did ancient Romans wear when sleeping?

What type of clothes did ancient Roman citizens wear at bedtime? Did they wear anything at all? I would like to focus on the late republican period, around 50-27BC. As a bonus, I would love to make ...
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1answer
130 views

Punishment for deserting lictors

Assume the following scenario: In the late days of the Roman Republic a consul is assaulted on the streets of the city by an angry mob, abetted by his political enemies. His lictors run away, leaving ...
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1answer
172 views

Did the Romans hold the Isle of Wight and surrounding areas before the invasion in 43 AD?

In this video it shows the Isle of Wight and the area around it including Southampton and Portsmouth being under Roman control beginning during Julius Caesar's invasion of Britain. However my brief ...
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2answers
361 views

What Roman institutions were obsolete by the end of the Republic?

Background: Recently I've been reading about the Roman Republic, specifically about its last century of civil war and disorder, and I've noticed that some historians say that the Republic fell because ...
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2answers
330 views

Sourced List of Ancient Roman Values

I need a listing of some of the most influential ancient Roman virtues for a book I'm writing. There is a great list, just what I need, here on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtue#...
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1answer
408 views

Did Romans piss into aqueducts as a joke?

Are there any historical references to this being done? Either for fun, as revenge of some kind or for any other reason? If this was common practice; did anyone try to prevent it from happening or ...
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0answers
135 views

Who were some Greek Plebeian Gentes, especially from Magna Graecia?

I'm looking for foreign influences on the Plebeians. Who are some Plebeian Gentes that were Greek, perhaps from Magna Graecia or Sicily? I vaguely recall reading about one from Campania, who came in ...
7
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1answer
566 views

How were political factions in the late Roman republic different from political parties today?

I've read that in the 1st century BCE, Rome came to be dominated by a dispute between two political factions: the Optimates, representing the traditionalist patrician families, who wanted to lock down ...
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1answer
267 views

What happened to Caesar's hostages in Gaul?

I am reading Caesar's Gallic wars, and there is a repetitive pattern to much of it. Caesar shows up The natives either sue for peace and surrender their weapons and give hostages, or The natives ...
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109 views

A comparison between the reforms of Athens and Rome

Question: What made it possible that, during the times of Solon, Athens underwent reforms characterized by isonomia, — that is, equality among citizens, — whereas their approximately contemporary ...
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2answers
641 views

Was Marc Antony with Julius Caesar when he crossed the Rubicon?

Question I had always been told that he was, and Plutarch's Life of Antony certainly seems to imply as much. But I just read a passage in Adrian Goldsworthy's book, Caesar's Civil War 49-44 BC, ...
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0answers
154 views

What Roman legal structures from the Republic lasted into the Empire and which ones were evaporated?

I've been reading about Roman political system in the late Roman Republic directly prior to Caesar being declared dictator. A question occurred to me which I cannot seem to find an answer to. What ...
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2answers
484 views

What were the incentives for joining the Roman army before the Marian reforms?

Before the Marian reforms, soldiers had to supply their own equipment. This did not exactly inspire anyone to form a professional standing army, especially since most were peasants who had to return ...
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1answer
565 views

Why didn't the Romans set up breeding mechanisms as a main source to supplement their population of slaves instead of relying on defeated enemies? [closed]

By the time of the Flavians there were large reductions in the supply of slaves, both those peacefully imported from outside the Empire and those captured in military campaigns. It was a time of ...
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2answers
387 views

Internal crisis of the Roman Republic before the Gracchi

The beginning of the Roman Republic is traditionally dated to 509 BC, when the Roman king Tarquinius Superbus was overthrown. Wikipedia article about the Crisis of the Roman Republic states that ...
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1answer
148 views

Was Crassus's fire brigade composed of slaves?

Crassus created the first Roman fire brigade, and many years later, Augustus took the idea and formed the Vigiles, a group of slaves serving as firefighters. However, I can't find any source ...
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638 views

Why was the Marian reforms' inclusion of landless masses necessary?

The Marian reforms of the late Roman Republic changed Rome's military into a standing, professional volunteer force and greatly enhanced its effectiveness, thereby ensuring Rome's dominance for ...
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1answer
541 views

First Roman battles after the Marian reforms

I'm quite interested in the removal of the Hastati, Principes and Triarii elements introduced by the Marian reforms in 107 BC, and how it affected the Roman army at first. Looking on Wikipedia for ...
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1answer
287 views

Gaulish logistics during Caesar's invasion

How much, if anything, do we know about how the Gauls camped and marched when facing Caesar? Did they have tents, mules, wagons, camp followers? Can we infer anything about their rate of march? Was ...
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1answer
681 views

Is there any evidence that Celts produced chain mail?

Since I started to interest myself in history of the northen Europe, and especially the history of Celtic people, I read a lot about their inventions, in terms of warfare. The quote from wiki ...
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1answer
559 views

Is there any sort of list of Roman senators?

I am looking for records on Roman senators (specifically around 100 B.C., around the time Ceasar was born) Googling for it I only find various wikipedia articles on how the Roman senate worked, but no ...
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1answer
230 views

In the early Roman Republic, did every patrician family have at least one consul?

It appears that gens Foslia for example only produced one: Marcus Foslius Flaccinator in 433. Are there examples of patrician families that produced no consuls? Or is it that our knowledge of ...
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1answer
734 views

Why did the Roman Republic never set up a civilian police department?

I was recently reading about conflicts between Clodius and Pompey. Clodius first but subsequently Pompey as well, used - what I would characterize as - armed gangs. The power of these gangs was such ...
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1answer
711 views

Were Roman marching songs still bawdy during principate/dominate?

We know from writers such as Suetonius in his Vita Divi Iuli that legionnaires would sing some quite raunchy and bawdy tunes, even during a triumph of their leader. There were open allusions to ...
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1answer
417 views

How did the Romans build their armies for the First Punic War?

The Romans built a great and vast empire, my question is what were some of the military techniques they used to build, train, and use their army? Specifically during the period of the First Punic War. ...
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1answer
1k views

What percent of the Roman Republic's population were citizens in various centuries? [closed]

Does anyone have any sources mentioning the percentages of citizens at various times, or the populations of citizens and corresponding total populations so I can calculate percents? I looked at dozens ...
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1answer
271 views

Were quaestors in the Roman Republic entitled to lictors/fasces?

I apologise if this is too basic a question, but Wikipedia seems to contradict itself! It says here https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quaestor that a Quaestor was entitled to one lictor and one fasces, ...
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1answer
151 views

What Was the Constitutional Basis that Made Pompey “Consul Without Colleague” for 52BC

From my understanding, the Senate had no prerogative in naming a consul. At best they could appoint an interrex among themselves. What was the constitutional basis that enabled the Senate to appoint ...
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What was the Constitutional Basis for Gaius Julius Caesar's Dictatorship

In the early republic, a dictator was usually appointed for a reason such as presiding over an election or defending the city against a foreign invasion. I remember reading somewhere that Sulla's ...
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2answers
226 views

Fulvia in Sallust's Catiline Conspiracy the same Fulvia as Mark Antony's wife?

I found this book that said they were not the same woman, but the author didn't give any evidence: Squires, S. (Ed.). (1990). Asconius Commentaries on Five Speeches of Cicero. Bolchazy-Carducci ...
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1answer
296 views

What happened to Marcus Licinius Crassus' Gold?

Marcus Licinius Crassus (from the First Triumvirate) was considered to be richest man ever. After his death however, what happened to his immense fortune? It seems like a treasure like that would be ...
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1answer
146 views

Examples of Romans repeating early stages of the cursus honorum

In some special cases, Romans held lower offices than some they had already held, for example Quaestor while having been a consul before. I understand that senators, expelled by the censors for ...
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1answer
96 views

Were the republican legati pro praetores appointed by the governors?

I am not referring to the Legati Augusti pro praetores of the Empire. In republican Rome, provincial governors chose their own legates quite freely. I found here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...
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1answer
252 views

Did the Roman senate immediately send new governors after the death of proconsuls/propraetors?

I would like to know whether the Roman senate sent replacements for deceased governors (due to illness, accident, war, ...) immediately after hearing of their death or was content to entrust the ...
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6answers
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Why did the Roman military start to favour swords over the spear phalanx?

Up until the rise of the Roman Republic, the Greek phalanx was considered the dominant form of military tactics. Evolution had simply favoured longer and longer spears: by the time of Alexander, ...
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1answer
353 views

How was the Roman Princeps Senatus appointed?

In Republican Rome, the princeps senatus (~head of the senate) was supposed to have been nominated by the censors, who were elected every 5 years for 1 and a half years. What happened when the ...
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2answers
2k views

Why did the original Carthage never become a Roman city?

Carthage fell to the might of Rome, I think it was, three times in total. They were completely defeated and accepted some pretty horrible terms of surrender. And yet they maintained their self ...
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5answers
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Why didn't Romans fight in a single line formation?

I read that historically, Romans fought in checker board formation, composed of 3 lines. But I play Rome Total War and in the game, that deployment means a nice recipe for high casualties. In the game,...
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2answers
482 views

How many citizens were in each century of the Roman electoral system?

The Centuriate assembly (Comicia centuriata) was arguably the most important assembly of the Roman republic. It was in charge of electing consuls, praetors and censors, of voting laws, declaring war ...
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Why is Sulla's nose in the bust in Munich Glyptothek broken?

I was just wondering if someone did this as a slight to Sulla in the same manner that crosses were carved into the foreheads of Roman busts.!