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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51
votes
6answers
16k views

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, ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Was Julius Caesar a hippie?

I was reading the question What was the hippie movement? Why did it decline? when I noticed this comment by Oldcat: There is even a story of Julius Caesar wearing a long fringe sleeved tunic to ...
10
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2answers
5k views

What is the 'rank switching' done by Roman Legionnaires in HBO's 'Rome' called, and did it actually happen?

I'm talking about the formational fighting show in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pJO2UfG9KcI Where did the show's creators get the source material? If so, what was it called, when did ...
24
votes
1answer
2k views

How many times did the the sacred fire of Vesta die?

The sacred fire of Vesta was a sacred eternal flame in Ancient Rome, tended to by the Vestal Virgins. Except once a year for the kalendae (first day of March), extinguishing the sacred fire resulted ...
17
votes
7answers
20k 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-...
12
votes
1answer
382 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 ...
11
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2answers
1k views

Did the Gallic army besieged in Alesia conduct itself well when expecting relief?

During a Gallic revolution against Rome, a Gallic army of some 80,000 men took shelter in the fortress town of Alesia, where they were besieged by some 50,000 Romans under Julius Caesar. (His army may ...
-1
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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.?
-2
votes
1answer
293 views

Christian and Etruscan end of times [closed]

I believe I've read somewhere, that the Etruscans (anymore knows any sources?) devoted ever more thought to the afterlife, as the Roman republic encroached on their territory. Similarly the Romans ...