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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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2
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0answers
165 views

How did the Romans salute the Republic?

Are there any known phrases that were used by Romans to celebrate or cheer for the Republic? Something like Ave Res Publica ? I've searched for some phrases I thought that would be likely, like Ave ...
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2answers
229 views

How many Romans would use an average-sized balneum every day?

How many Romans would use an average-sized balneum every day, if the people coming to the balneum only went to that balneum once a day? I have already tried researching about this question using ...
6
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1answer
403 views

Are there any ancient sources clearly testifying a frozen Tiber river in the year 398, 396, 271, and 177 BCE?

Multiple sources, ranging from Wikipedia to journal articles over the years (such as this one), record a series of severe winters which caused the Tiber river to be frozen in the above-listed years. ...
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1answer
149 views

Can someone clarify Livy's argument in Book 21, Chapter 19 of Ab Urbe Condita Libri?

Can someone clarify the following passage from Book 21, Chapter 19 of Livy's Ab Urbe Condita Libri? [This is the translation of Rev Canon Roberts, taken from the Perseus website] This ...
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3answers
768 views

Why was Caesar at the Rubicon?

«Ἀνερρίφθω κύβος» (anerriphtho kybos, lit. Let the die be cast) was attributed by Suetonius to Caesar when it was reported that some legionaries cross the Rubicon. Why did Caesar move to the Rubicon ...
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1answer
113 views

Did Roman citizens vote in more than one legislative assembly?

During the Roman Republic, did Roman citizens vote in more than one legislative assembly (namely the Curiate, Centuriate, Tribal Assemblies, and the Plebeian Council)? For example, was a plebeian ...
3
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0answers
75 views

Is Zonaras' epitome of Cassius Dio the fullest surviving ancient annalistic account of Roman history for the period 292–265 BC?

Is the Byzantine historian Zonaras' epitome of Cassius Dio's Roman History (as presented alongside Dio's fragments in the Loeb edition of the Roman History) our fullest surviving ancient annalistic ...
9
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2answers
663 views

What is the chair depicted in Cesare Maccari's 1889 painting “Cicerone denuncia Catilina”?

There are a number of inaccuracies in Cesare Maccari's painting. Wikipedia notes that the arrangement of the chairs was of parallel rather than radial as depicted. Did Maccari accurately depict the ...
9
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2answers
650 views

Who stood for the Roman consulship in absentia?

I'm trying to find precedents for Caesar's request in 50 BC to stand for the consulship in absentia (i.e. without returning to Rome as a private citizen), which was ultimately refused by the Senate. ...
2
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1answer
228 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 ...
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125 views

What is the latest case of employment of Cretan archers in Antiquity?

It is known that Cretan archers were widely used (presumably as mercenaries) across Mediterranean by Greek armies and were occasionally included in Roman armies of Republic and of Imperial period. I ...
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2answers
355 views

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
707 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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2answers
868 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 ...
6
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1answer
187 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
1k 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 ...
7
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1answer
177 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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2answers
469 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 ...
6
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2answers
480 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 ...
7
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1answer
347 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 ...
12
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1answer
329 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 ...
24
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1answer
2k views

What did the Romans do for Judea?

I watched The Life of Brian and I heard this quotation: And from our fathers' fathers' fathers. Reg: Yes. Stan: And from our fathers' fathers' fathers' fathers. Reg: All right, ...
5
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1answer
374 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
1k 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 ...
2
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1answer
107 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?
7
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1answer
977 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 ...
6
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1answer
2k 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 ...
16
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7answers
16k views

How well can cavalry fight infantry?

In the Battle of Pharsalus, Caesar's infantry won by throwing their spears at the horsemen's faces. So how come in Battle of Zama and many other battles, including the battle where Khalid ibn al-...
2
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1answer
151 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 ...
6
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0answers
196 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 ...
3
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1answer
223 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 ...
3
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2answers
620 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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3answers
1k views

What was the source of the idea of a republic?

Where did the Greeks or the Romans find the idea of a "Republic"? What was the source of the idea? Did the idea come from philosophers, or citizens, etc.?
5
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2answers
245 views

Why didn't Tiberius Gracchus seek the consulship?

Tiberius Gracchus tried to push through his reforms programme while holding the magistracy of a tribune of the plebs. I wonder, though, why he did not try to get elected as consul (very likely given ...
7
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5answers
3k views

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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1answer
487 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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2answers
2k views

What kind of siege weapons were used during Punic wars?

I would like to know which kind of siege weapons were used during Punic wars on both sides, there is not very much information around.
13
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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 ...
7
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2answers
616 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 ...
6
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1answer
993 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 ...
7
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2answers
853 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
181 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 ...
29
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1answer
7k views

What form of home address did Romans use?

Were the buildings in an ancient Roman city numbered, named or something else? How would they tell each other where they lived? Were the numbers painted on the walls? Did they have apartment numbers? ...
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1answer
728 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 ...
3
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2answers
478 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
849 views

What Roman legions in Spain revolted against Caesar before the battle at Munda?

I was debating an interesting topic recently about Pompey's legions in Spain and why they hadn't fought alongside him against Caesar at Pharsalus. Now Caesar forcefully convinced most of them to join ...
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2answers
538 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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2answers
328 views

Who were the candidates in the consular elections for 80 BC in Rome?

Wikipedia describes the political process of 80 BC thus: Near the end of 81 BC, Sulla, true to his traditionalist sentiments, resigned his dictatorship, disbanded his legions and re-established ...
5
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1answer
159 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 ...
49
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6answers
9k views

When did the Romans finally acknowledge that they were living in an empire?

The Romans, during the time of the Republic, were a famously anti-monarchical society. There are plenty of stories of Roman politicians gaining favor by refusing crowns, or condemning kings, etc. As ...