About Maximapedia

Rome, History Of, Iv - The Period Of The Revolution, 146-49 Bc

ROME, HISTORY OF, IV - THE PERIOD OF THE REVOLUTION, 146-49 BC In the course of little more than a century, Rome had become the supreme power in the civilized world. By all men, says Polybius, it was taken for granted that nothing remained but to obey the commands of the Romans. 1 For the future the interest of Roman history centres in her attempts to perform the two Herculean tasks which this unique position laid upon her, the efficient government of the subject peoples, and their defence against the barbarian races which swarmed around them on all sides. They were tasks under which the old republican constitution broke down, and which finally overtaxed the strength even of the marvellous organization framed and elaborated by Augustus and his successors.

Although in its outward form the old constitution had undergone little change during the age of war and conquest from Consti- 2 ^5 to I4 ^' 2 ^e causes > both internal and external, tutionat which brought about its fall had been silently at work changes, throughout. Its form was in strictness that of a moderate democracy. The patriciate had ceased to exist as a privileged caste, 3 and there was no longer any order of nobility recognized by the constitution. The senate and the offices of state were in law open to all, 4 and the will of the people in assembly had been in the most explicit and unqualified manner declared to be supreme alike in the election of magistrates, in the passing of laws, and in all matters touching the caput of a Roman citizen. But in practice the Ascend- constitution had become an oligarchy. The senate, ancy not the assembly, ruled Rome, and both the senate of the and the magistracies were in the hands of a class senate. which, in defiance of the law, arrogated to itself the title and the privileges of a nobility. 5 The ascendancy of the senate is too obvious and familiar a fact to need much illustration here. It was but rarely that the assembly was called upon to decide questions of policy, and then the proposal was usually made by the magistrate in obedience to the express directions of the senate. 6 In the enormous majority of cases the matter was settled by a senutus consultum, without any reference to 1 Polyb. iii. 4.

2 The most important change was the assimilation of the division j^_ by classes and centuries with that by tribes, a change possibly due to the censorship of Gaius Flaminius in 220 (Mommsen, Staalsr. iii. 270). On this point see COMITIA.

3 A few offices of a more or less priestly character were still filled 545. on ' y ky patricians, e.g. rex sacrorum, flamen Dialis. A plebeian first became curio maximus in 209 (Livy xxvii. 8).

4 The lectio senatus was in the hands of the censors, but whether before Sulla's time their choice was subject to legal restrictions is doubtful (see SENATE).

6 Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iii. 7; Lange, Rom. Alierth. ii. I ff.

" Ex auctoritate senatus." The lex Flaminia agraria of 232 was an exception (Cic. De senect. 4; Polyb. ii. 21). In 167 B.C. a praetor brought the question of war with Rhodes directly before the assembly, but this was condemned as unprecedented (novo maloque exemplo, Liv. xlv. 21).

the people at all. The assembly decides for war or peace, 7 " but the conduct of the war and the conditions of peace are matters left to the senate (q.v.). Now and then the assembly confers a command upon the man of its choice, or prolongs the imperium of a magistrate, 8 but, as a rule, these and all questions connected with foreign affairs are settled within the walls of the' senate-house.* It is the senate which year after year assigns the commands and fixes the number and disposition of the military forces, w directs the organization of a new province," conducts negotiations, and forms alliances. Within Italy, though its control of affairs was less exclusive, we find that, besides supervising the ordinary current business of administration, the senate decides questions connected with the Italian allies, sends out colonies, allots lands, and directs the suppression of disorders. Lastly, both in Italy and abroad it managed the finances. 12 Inseparably connected with this monopoly of affairs to the exclusion of the assembly was the control which in practice, if not in theory, the senate exercised over the magistrates. The latter had become what Cicero wrongly declares they were always meant to be, merely the subordinate ministers of the supreme council, 13 which assigned them their departments, provided them with the necessary equipment, claimed to direct their conduct, prolonged their commands, and rewarded them with triumphs. It was now at once the duty and the interest of a magistrate to be in auctoritate senatus, " subject to the authority of the senate," and even the once formidable tribuni plebis are found during this period actively and loyally supporting the senate, and acting as its spokesmen in the assembly. 14 The causes of this ascendancy of the senate are to be found firstly in the fact that the senate was the only body capable of conducting affairs in an age of incessant war. The voters in the assembly, a numerous, widely scattered body, could not readily be called together, and when assembled were very imperfectly qualified to decide momentous, questions of military strategy and foreign policy. The senate, on the contrary, could be summoned in a moment, 15 and included in its ranks all the skilled statesmen and soldiers of the commonwealth. The subordination of the magistrates was equally the result of circumstances, for, as the numbers of the magistrates, and also the area of government, increased, some central controlling power became absolutely necessary to prevent collisions between rival authorities, and to secure a proper division of labour, as well as to enforce the necessary concert and co-operation. 16 No such power could be found anywhere in the republican system but in the senate, standing as it necessarily did in the closest relations with the magistrate, and composed as it was increasingly of men who were or had been in office.

Once more, behind both senate and magistrates, lay the whole power and influence of the new nobility. 17 These nobiles were essentially distinct from the older and more legiti- fi, e mate patrician aristocracy. Every patrician was of aobiles. course noble, but the majority of the " noble families " in 146 were not patrician but plebeian. 18 The title had been gradually appropriated, since the opening of the magistracies, by those families whose members had held curule office, and had thereby acquired the ius imaginum. It was thus in theory within the reach of any citizen who could, win election even to the curule aedileship, and, moreover, it carried with it no legal privileges whatsoever. Gradually,.

7 Livy xxxi. 5, xxxiii. 25, xxxvii. 55. 8 Ibid. xxx. 27, etc.

9 Polyb. (vi. 15) expressly includes the prorogation of a command among the prerogatives of the senate.

10 Livy xxvi. I, " consules de republica, de administratione belli,, de provmciis exercitib.usque patres consuluerunt."

11 Ibid. xlv. 18. a Ihne, Hist, of Rome, iv. 43; Polyb. vi. 13.

13 Pro Sestio 65, " quasi ministros gravissimi consilii."

14 Livy xxvii. 5, xxviii. 45.

15 Ibid. xxii. 7. In 191 the senators were forbidden to leave Rome for more than a day, nor were more than five to be absent at once (Livy xxxvi. 3).

16 Ibid, xxvii. 35. 17 Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iii. 7 fi. 18 E.g. Livii, Sempronii, Caecilii. Licinii, etc.

however, the ennobled plebeian families drew together, and combined with the older patrician gentes to form a distinct order. Office brought wealth and prestige, and both wealth and prestige were liberally employed in securing for this select circle a monopoly of political power, and excluding new men. 1 Already by the close of the period it was rare for any one but a noble to find his way into high office or into the senate. The senate and magistrates are the mouthpieces of this order, and identified with it in policy and interest. Lastly, it must be allowed that both the senate and the nobility had to some extent justified their power by the use they made of it. It was their tenacity of purpose and devoted patriotism which had carried Rome through the dark days of the Hannibalic War. The heroes of the struggle with Carthage belonged to the leading families; the disasters at the Trasimene Lake and at Cannae were associated with the blunders of popular favourites.

From the first, however, there was an inherent weakness in this senatorial government. It had no sound constitutional Weakness Das i s > an d w ith tne removal of its accidental supports of the it fell to the ground. Legally the senate had no senatorial positive authority. It could merely advise the magisgovem- trate when asked to do so, and its decrees were strictly """*' only suggestions to the magistrate, which he was at liberty to accept or reject as he chose. 2 It had, it is true, become customary for the magistrate not only to ask the senate's advice on all important points, but to follow it when given. But it was obvious that if this custom were weakened, and the magistrates chose to act independently, the senate was powerless. It might indeed anathematize* the refractory official, or hamper him if it could by setting in motion against him a colleague or the tribunes, but it could do no more, and these measures failed just where the senate's control was most needed and most difficult to maintain in its relations with the generals and governors of provinces abroad. The virtual inggg^ dependence of the proconsul was before 146 already exciting the jealousy of the senate and endangering its supremacy. 4 Nor again had the senate any legal hold over the assembly. Except in certain specified cases, it rested with the magistrate to decide whether any question should be settled by a decree of the senate or a vote of the assembly. 6 If he decided to make a proposal to the assembly, he was not bound except by custom to obtain the previous approval of the senate, 6 and the constitution set no limits to the power of the assembly to decide any question whatsoever that was laid before it. gg 7 From 167, at least, onwards, there were increasing indications that both the acquiescence of the people in senatorial government and the loyalty of the magistrates to the senate were failing. The absorbing excitement of the great wars had died away; the economic and social disturbance and distress which they produced were creating a growing feeling of discontent; and at the same time the senate provoked inquiries into its title to govern by its failure any longer to govern well. In the East there was confusion; in the West a single native chieftain defied the power which had crushed ' Carthage. At 1 Livy xxii. 34, " plebeios nobiles . . . contemnere plebem, ex quo contemni a patnbus desierint, coepisse"; cf. Sail, Jug. 41, paucorum arbitrio belli domique agitabatur; penes eosdem aerarium, provinciae, magistratus." Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iii. 15 n. The number of new families ennobled dwindles rapidly after 200 B.C. ; Willems, Le S6nat de la rtpublique romaine, i. 366 seq. (Paris, 1878).

4 The senators' whole duty is " sententiam dicere." The senator was asked " quid censes?" the assembly "quid velitis jubeatis?" Cf. also the saving clause, " Si eis videretur " (sc. consulibus, etc.) in Seta., e.g. Cic. Phil. v. 19, 53.

3 By declaring his action to be " contra rempublicam." The force of this anathema varied with circumstances. It had no legal value.

4 Livy xxxviii. 42, of Cn. Manlius Vulso in Asia, 189 B.C.; cf. also the position of the two Scipios.

6 Hence the same things, e.g. founding of colonies, are done. in one year by a Sctum., in another by a lex; cf. Cic. De rep. ii. 32, 56; Phil, i 2, 6, of Antony as consul," mutata omnia, nihil per senatum, omnia per populum."

There was no legal necessity, before Sulla's time, for getting .the senatus auctoritas for a proposal to the assembly.

home the senate was becoming more and more simply an organ of the nobility, and the nobility were becoming every year more exclusive, more selfish, and less capable and unanimous. 7 But if the senate was not to govern, the difficulty arose of finding an efficient substitute, and it was this difficulty that mainly determined the issue of the struggles which convulsed Rome from 133 to 49. As the event showed, neither the assembly 62I-70S nor the numerous and disorganized magistracy was equal to the work; the magistrates were gradually pushed aside in favour of a more centralized authority, and the former became only the means by which this new authority was first encouraged in opposition to the senate and finally established in a position of impregnable strength. The assembly which made Pompey and Caesar found out too late that it could not unmake them. .

It is possible that these constitutional and administrative difficulties would not have proved so rapidly fatal to the Effects ol Republic had not its very foundations been sapped conquest by the changes which followed more or less directly on on Roman the conquests of the 3rd and 2nd centuries B.C. For society. the opening of the world to Rome, and of Rome to the world, produced a radical change in the structure of Roman society. The subjugation of the Mediterranean countries, by placing at the disposal of Rome the vast natural resources of the West and the accumulated treasures of the East, caused a rapid rise in the standard of wealth and a marked change in its distribution. The Roman state was enabled to dispense with the direct taxation of its citizens, 8 since it derived all the revenue which it needed from the subject countries. But the wealth drawn from the provinces by the state was trifling in amount compared with that which flowed into the pockets of individual citizens. Not only was the booty taken in war largely appropriated by the Roman commanders and their men, but a host of money-makers settled upon the conquered provinces and exploited them for their profit. The nobles engaged in the task of administration, the contractors (publicani) who farmed the revenues, and the " men of business " ( negolialores) who, as money-lenders, merchants or speculators, penetrated to every corner of the Empire, reaped a rich harvest at the expense of the provincials. Farming in Italy on the old lines became increasingly laborious and unprofitable owing to the importation of foreign corn and foreign slaves, 9 and capitalists sought easier methods of acquiring wealth. If this had meant that capital was expended in developing the natural resources of the provinces, the result would have been to increase the prosperity of the countries subject to Rome; but it was not so. The Roman negotiators, who were often merely the agents of the great families of Rome, drained the accumulated wealth of the provinces by lending money to the subject communities at exorbitant rates of interest. Cicero, for example, found when governor of Cilicia that M. Junius Brutus had lent a large sum to the people of Salamis in Cyprus at 48% compound interest; and we cannot suppose that this was an exceptional case. Such practices as these, together with the wasteful and oppressive system of tax-farming, and the deliberate extortions carried on by senatorial governors, reduced the flourishing cities of the Greek East, within the space of two generations, to utter economic exhaustion.

But the reaction of the same process on Rome herself had far more important consequences. The whole structure of Roman society was altered, and the equality and homogeneity Accentwhich had once been its chief characteristics were nation at destroyed. The Roman nobles had not merely ceased, clas * ** as in old days, to till their own farms; they had found tjactl01 "- a means of enriching themselves beyond the dreams of avarice, 7 See generally Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, i. bk. iii. cap. 6;Lange, Rom. Alterth. vol. ii.; Ihne, bk. v. cap. i. The first law against bribery at elections was passed in 181 B.C. (Livy xl. 19), and against magisterial extortion in the provinces in 149 (Lex Calpurnia de pecuniis repetundis). The senators had special seats allotted to them in the theatre in 194 B.C.; Livy xxxiv. 44, 54.

8 The tributum was no longer levied after 167 B.C. (Cic. Off. u. 22; Plin. H.N. xxxiii. 56).

9 See, however, p. 637, note I and reff.

and when they returned from the government of a province it was to build sumptuous villas, filled with the spoils of Greece and Asia, to surround themselves with troops of slaves and dependents, and to live rather as princes than as citizens of a republic. The publicani and negolialores formed a second order in the state, which rivalled the first in wealth and coveted a share in its political supremacy; while the third estate, the plebs urbana, was constantly increasing in numbers and at the same time sinking into the condition of an idle proletariat. The accentuation of class distinctions is indeed inevitable in a capitalist society, such as that of Rome was now becoming. But the process was fraught with grave political danger owing to the peculiarities of the Roman constitution, which rested in theory on the ultimate sovereignty of the people, who were in practice represented by the city mob. To win the support of the plebs became a necessity for ambitious politicians, and the means employed for this end poisoned the political life of Rome. The wealth derived from the provinces was freely spent in bribery, 1 and the populace of Rome was encouraged to claim as the price of its support a share in the spoils of empire.

It was not only the structure and composition of Roman society that underwent a transformation. The victory of The new Rome in her struggle for supremacy in the Medilearniag terranean basin had been largely due to the powerful aD <* conservative forces by which her institutions were manners. p reserve{ j from decay. Respect for the mos mojorum, or ancestral custom, imposed an effective check on the desire for innovation. Though personal religion, in the deeper sense, was foreign to the Roman temperament, there was a genuine belief in the gods whose favour had made Rome great in the past and would uphold her in the future so long as she trod in the old paths of loyalty and devotion. Above all, the healthy moral traditions of early Rome were maintained by the discipline of the family, resting on the supreme authority of the father the patria potestas and the powerful influence of the mother, to whom the early training of the child was entrusted. 2 Finally, the institution of the censorship, backed as it was by the mighty force of public opinion, provided a deterrent which prevented any flagrant deviation from the accepted standard of morals. All this was changed by the influence of Greek civilization, with which Rome was first brought face to face in the 3rd century B.C. owing to her relations with Magna Graecia. At first the results of contact with the older and more brilliant culture of Hellas were on the whole good. In the and century B.C., when constant intercourse was established with the communities of Greece proper and of Asia Minor, " philhellenism " became a passion, which was strongest in the best minds of the day and resulted in a quickened intellectual activity, wider sympathies and a more humane life. But at the same time the "new learning" was a disturbing and unsettling force. The Roman citizen was confronted with new doctrines in politics and religion, and initiated into the speculations of critical philosophy. 3 Under the influence of this powerful solvent the fabric of tradition embodied in the mos majorum fell to pieces; a revolt set in against Roman discipline and Roman traditions of self-effacement, and the craving for individual distinction asserted itself with irresistible vehemence. As it had been in the days of the " Sophistic " movement at Athens, so it was now with Rome; a higher education, which, owing to its expense, was necessarily confined to the wealthier classes, interposed between the upper and lower ranks of society a barrier even more effectual than that set up by differences of material condition, and by releasing the individual from the trammels of traditional morality, gave his ambition free course. The effect on private morals may be gauged by the vehemence with which the reactionary opposi- 1 From 181 B.C. onwards a succession of laws de ambitu were passed to prevent bribery, but without effect.

2 Cf. Tacitus's account of Cornelia, the mother of the Gracchi, and Aurelia, the mother of Julius Caesar, in the dialogue De oratoribus, c. 28.

1 It is to be noted that these subjects were, generally speaking, taught by freedmen or slaves.

tion, headed by M. Porcius Cato (consul, 195 B.C.; censor, 184 B.C.), inveighed against the new fashions, and by the list of measures passed to check the growth of luxury and licence, and to exclude the foreign teachers of the new learning. 4 It was all in vain. The art of rhetoric, which was studied through the medium of Greek treatises and Greek models, furnished the Roman noble with weapons of attack and defence of which he was not slow to avail himself in the forum and the senate-house. In the science of money-making, which had been elaborated under the Hellenistic monarchies, the Roman capitalists proved apt pupils of their Greek teachers. Among the lower classes, contact with foreign slaves and freedmen, with foreign worships and foreign vices, produced a love of novelty which no legislation could check. Even amongst women there were symptoms of revolt against the old order, which showed itself in a growing freedom of manners and impatience of control, 5 the marriage tie was relaxed, 6 and the respect for mother and wife, which had been so powerful a factor in the maintenance of the Roman standard of morals, was grievously diminished. Thus Rome was at length brought face to face with a moral and economic crisis which a modern historian has described in the words: " Italy was living through the fever of moral disintegration and incoherence which assails all civilized societies that are rich in the manifold resources of culture and enjoyment, but tolerate few or no restraints on the feverish struggle of contending appetites." In this struggle the Roman Republic perished, and personal government took its place. The world had outgrown the city-state and its political machinery, and as the notions of federalism (on any large scale) and representative government had not yet come into being, no solution of the problem was possible save that of absolutism. But a far stronger resistance would have been opposed to political revolution by the republican system had not public morals been sapped by the influences above described. Political corruption was reduced to a science 7 for the benefit of individuals who were often faced with the alternatives of ruin or. revolution; 8 there was no longer any body of sound public opinion to which, in the last resort, appeal could be made; and, long before the final catastrophe took place, Roman society itself had become, in structure and temper, thoroughly unrepublican.

The first systematic attack upon the senatorial government is connected with the names of Tiberius and Gaius Gracchus (q.v.), and its immediate occasion was an attempt to The deal with no less a danger than the threatened dis- Gracchi, appearance of the class to which of all others Rome 133-21= owed most in the past. 9 The small landholders 62 '- 33 - throughout the greater part of Italy were sinking deeper into ruin under the pressure of accumulated difficulties. The Hannibalic war had laid waste their fields and thinned their numbers, nor when peace returned to Italy did it bring with it any revival of prosperity. The heavy burden of military service still pressed ruinously upon them, 10 and in addition they were called upon to compete with the foreign corn 4 In 161 B.C. a decree of the senate was passed against " philosophi et rhetores Latini, uti Romae ne essent " (Cell. xv. n). In 155 B.C. the philosopher Carneades was expelled from Rome (Plut. Cato. 22).

'The elder Cato complained of this as early as 195 B.C. (Liv. xxxiv. 2).

6 Divorce was unknown at Rome until 231 B.C. (Dionys. ii. 25). In the last century of the Republic it was of daily occurrence.

7 In the Ciceronian period the lower classes of Rome, with whom the voting power in the comitia. rested, were openly organized for purposes of bribery by means of collegia and sodalicia, nominallyreligious bodies. t 8 Caesar had accumulated debts amounting to 800,000 by the time of his praetorship. Catiline and his fellow-bankrupts, amongst whom were several women, including a certain Sempronia who, as we are told by Sallust, " danced and played better than an honest woman need do," hoped to bring about a cancelling of debts (novae tabulae).

* For authorities, see under GRACCHUS.

10 To Spain alone more than 150,000 men were sent between 196 and 169 (Ihne iii. 319); compare the reluctance of the people to declare war against Macedon in 200 B.C., and also the case of Spurius Ligustinus in 171 (Livy, xlii. 34).

6 37 574. 594.

imported from beyond the sea, and with the foreign slave-labour purchased by the capital of, wealthier men. 1 Farming became unprofitable, and the hard laborious life with its scanty returns was thrown into still darker relief when compared with the stirring life of the camps with its opportunities of booty, or with the cheap provisions, frequent largesses and gay spectacles to be had in the large towns. The small holders went off to follow the eagles or swell the proletariat of the cities, and their holdings were left to run waste or merged in the vineyards, oliveyards and above all in the great cattlefarms of the rich, and their own place was taken by slaves. The evil was worst in Etruria and in southern Italy; but everywhere it was serious enough to demand the earnest attention of Roman statesmen. Of its existence the government had received plenty of warning in the declining numbers of able-bodied males returned at the census, 2 in the increasing difficulties of recruiting for the legions, 3 in servile outbreaks in Etruria and Apulia, 4 and 554-94 between 200 and 160 a good deal was attempted by way of remedy. In addition to the foundation of twenty colonies, 5 there were frequent allotments of land to veteran soldiers, especially in Apulia and Samnium. 6 In 1 80, 40,000 Ligurians were removed from their homes and settled on vacant lands once the property of a Samnite tribe, 7 and in 160 the Pomptine marshes were drained for the purpose of cultivation. 8 But these efforts were only partially successful. The colonies planted in Cisalpine Gaul and in Picenum flourished, but of the others the majority slowly dwindled away, and two required recolonizing only eight years after their foundation. 9 The veterans who received land were unfitted to make good farmers; and large numbers, on the first opportunity, gladly returned saA as volunteers to a soldier's life. Moreover, after 160 even these efforts ceased, and with the single exception of the colony of Auximum in Picenum (157) nothing was done to check the spread of the evil, until in 133 Tiberius Gracchus, on his election to the tribunate, set his hand to the work.

The remedy proposed by Gracchus 10 amounted in effect to the resumption by the state of as much of the " common land " as was not held in occupation by authorized persons and conformably to the provisions of the Licinian law, 11 and the distribution in allotments of the land thus rescued for the community from the monopoly of a few. It was a scheme which could quote in its favour ancient precedent as well as urgent necessity. Of the causes which led to its ultimate failure something will be said later on; for the present we must turn to the constitutional conflict which it provoked. The senate from the first identified itself with the interests of the wealthy occupiers, and Tiberius found himself forced into a struggle with that body, which had been no part of his original plan. He fell back on the legislative sovereignty of the assembly; he resuscitated the half-forgotten powers of interference vested in the tribunate in order to paralyse the action of the senatorial magistrates, and finally lost his life in an attempt to make good one of the weak points in the tribune's position by securing his own re-election for a second year. But the conflict did not end with his death. It was 1 Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iii. 75 seq. Ihne, Hist, of Rome, iv. 364, argues that Mommsen has exaggerated the depressing effects of foreign competition; cf. Salvioli, Le Capitalisme dans le monde antique, chaps, v.-vii.

2 Beloch, Ital. Bund. 80 seq.

'Livy xliii. 14; Epit. xlviii., Iv. During the period the minimum qualification for service in the legion was reduced from 1 1 ,oop to 4000 asses.

4 Livy xxxii. 26, xxxiii. 36, xxxix. 29, 41.

6 Sixteen Roman and four Latin colonies. See Marquardt, Staatsverw, i. 6 E.g. Livy xxxi. 4, 49, xxxii. I.

7 Livy xl. 38. 8 Livy, Ep it. xlvi.

9 Sipontum and Buxentum in 186; Livy xxxix. 23.

10 Plut. T. G. 9-14; Appian, B.C. i. 9-13; Livy, Epit. Iviii. Compare also Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iii. 320 seq.; Lange, Rom. Alterth. iii. 8 seq.; Nitzsch, Gracchen, 294; Greenidge, Hist, of Rome, i. (1904), pp. no seq.

11 For the details, see the article AGRARIAN LAWS.

renewed on a wider scale, and with a more deliberate aim by his brother Gaius, who on his election to the tribunate ( 1 23) aai tt * at once came forward as the avowed enemy of the Ormcchu*. senate. 12 The latter suddenly found its control of **' the administration threatened at a variety of points. On the invitation of the popular tribune the assembly proceeded to restrict the senate's freedom of action in assigning the provinces. 13 It regulated the taxation of the province of Asia 14 and altered the conditions of military service. 16 In home affairs it inflicted two serious blows on the senate's authority by declaring the summary punishment of Roman citizens by the consuls on the strength of a senatus consultum to be a violation of the law of appeal, 16 and by taking out of the senate's hands the control of the newly established court for the trial of cases of magisterial misgovernment in the provinces. 17 Tiberius had committed the mistake of relying too exclusively on the support of one section only of the community; his brother endeavoured to enlist on the popular side every available ally. The Latins and Italians had opposed an agrarian scheme which took from them land which they had come to regard as rightfully theirs, and gave them no share in the benefit of the allotments. 18 Gaius not only removed this latter grievance, 19 but ardently supported and himself brought forward the first proposals made in Rome for their enfranchisement. 20 The indifference of the city populace, to whom the prospect of small holdings in a remote district of Italy was not a tempting one, was overcome by the establishment of regular monthly doles of corn at a low price. 21 Finally, the men of business the publicans, merchants and money-lenders were conciliated by the privilege granted to them of collecting the tithes of the new province of Asia, and placed in direct rivalry with the senate by the substitution of men of their own class as judges in the " quaestio de repetundis," in place of senators. 22 The organizer of this concerted attack upon the position of the senate fell, like his brother, in a riot.

The agrarian reforms of the two Gracchi had little permanent effect. 23 Even in the lifetime of Gaius the clause in his brother's law rendering the new holdings inalienable was repealed, and the process of absorption recommenced. In 118 a stop was put to further allotment of occupied tempt at lands, and finally, in in, the whole position of the agrarian agrarian question was altered by a law which converted all land still held in occupation into private land. 24 The old controversy as to the proper use of the lands of the community was closed by this act of alienation. The controversy in future turns, not on the right of the poor 12 On the legislation of C. Gracchus, see Warde Fowler in Eng. Hist. Review (1905), pp. 209 seq., 417 sea.

13 Lex Sempronia de provinciis consularibus; Cic. Pro domo, 9, 1zz 4; De Prov. Cons. 2, 3; Sallust, Jug. 27.

x de provincia Asia; Cic. K< ii. 125.

14 Lex de provincia Asia; Cic. Verr. 3, 6, 12; Pronto, Ad Ver.

16 Plut. C.G. 5 ; Diod. xxxiv. 25.

16 Plut. C.G. 4; Cic. Pro domo, 31, 82; Pro Rab. Perd. 4, 12.

"Quaestio de repetundis, est. 149 B.C. See Plut. C.G. 5; Livy, Epit. Ix. ; Tac. Ann. xii. 60; App. B.C. i. 22. For the lex Acilia, see C.I.L. i. 189; Wordsworth, Fragm. 424; Bruns, Fontes juris Romani, ed. 6, pp. 56 seq.

18 They had succeeded in 129 in suspending the operations of the agrarian commission. App. B.C. i. 18; Livy, Epit. lix.; Cic. De Rep. iii. 29, 41.

19 Lange, R.A. iii. 32; Lex Agr. line 21.

10 The rogatio Fulvia, 125 B.C.; Val. Max. ix. 5, i; App. B.C. i. 21.

21 Plut. C.G. 5; App. i. 21 ; Livy, Epit. Ix.; Festus, 290. _ 22 Hence Gaius ranked as the founder of the equestrian order. Plin. N.H. xxxiii. 34, " judicum appellatione separare eum ordinem . . . instituere Gracchi "; Varro ap. Non. 454, "bicipitcm civitatem fecit."

23 Traces of the work of the commission survive in the Miliarium Popilianum, C.I.L. i. 551, in a few Gracchan "termini," ib. 552, 553. 554- 555> m the " limites Gracchani," Liber Colon., ed. Lachmann, pp. 209, 210, 211, 229, etc. Compare also the rise in the numbers of the census of 125 B.C.; Livy, Eptt. Ix.

24 See App. i. 27. The lex agraria, still extant in a fragmentary condition in the museum at Naples, is that of in. See Mommsen, C.I.L. i. 200; Wordsworth, 441 seq.; Bruns, Pontes juris Rom. ed. 6, pp. 74 seq., and cf. the article AGRARIAN LAWS.

1zz 18 100 636-54.

642. 643.

citizens to the state lands, but on the expediency of purchasing other lands for distribution at the cost of the treasury. 1 But, though the agrarian reform failed, the political conflict it had provoked continued, and the lines on which it was waged were in the main those laid down by Gaius Gracchus. The sovereignty of the assembly continued to be the watchword of the popular party, and a free use of the tribunician powers of interference and of legislation remained the most effective means of accomplishing their aims.

Ten years after the death of Gaius the populares once more summoned up courage to challenge the supremacy of the senate; but it was on a question of foreign administration that the conflict was renewed. The course of affairs in the client state of Numidia since Micipsa's death in 118 had been such as to discredit a stronger government than that of the senate. 2 In defiance of Roman authority, and relying on the influence of his own well-spent gold, Jugurtha had murdered both his legitimate rivals, Hiempsal and Adherbal, and made himself master of Numidia. The declaration of war wrung from the senate (112) by popular indignation had been followed by the corruption of a consul 3 (in) and the crushing defeat of the proconsul Albinus. 4 On the news of this crowning disgrace the storm burst, and on the proposal of the tribunes a commission of inquiry was appointed into the conduct of the war. 6 But the popular leaders did not stop here. Q. Caecilius Metellus, who as consul (109) had succeeded to the command in^umidia, was an able soldier but a rigid aristocrat; and they now resolved to improve their success by entrusting the command instead to a genuine son of the people. Their choice fell on Gaius Marius (see MARIUS), an experienced officer and administrator, but a man of humble birth, wholly illiterate, and one who, though no politician, was by temperament and training a hater of the polished and effeminate nobles who filled the senate. 6 He was triumphantly elected, and, in spite of a decree of the senate continuing Metellus as proconsul, he was entrusted by a vote of the assembly with the charge of the war against Jugurtha (<?..). 7 Jugurtha was vanquished; and Marius, who had been a second time elected consul in his absence, arrived at Rome in 6SO January 104, bringing the captive prince with him in chains. 8 But further triumphs awaited the popular hero. The Cimbri and Teutones were at the gates of Italy; they had four times defeated the senatorial generals, and Marius was called upon to save Rome from a second invasion of the barbarians. 9 After two years of suspense the victory at Aquae Sextiae (102), followed by that on the Raudine plain (101), put an end to the danger by the annihilation of the invading hordes; and Marius, now consul for the fifth time, returned to Rome in triumph. There the popular party welcomed him as a leader with all the prestige of a successful general. Once more, however, they were destined to a brief success followed by disastrous defeat. Marius became for the sixth time consul; 10 of the two popular leaders Glaucia became Satur- praetor and Saturninus tribune. But Marius and his ninus allies were not statesmen of the stamp of the Gracchi ; and the anc j the laws proposed by Saturninus had evidently no serious aim in view other than that of harassing the senate. His corn law merely reduced the price fixed in 123 for the monthly dole of corn, and the main point of his agrarian law lay in the clause appended to it requiring all senators to swear to observe its pro- 1 Cic. Agr. ii. 25, 65. * Sallust, Jug. 5 seq.; Livy, Epit. Ixii., Ixiv.

3 L. Calpurnius Bestia, tribune 121 ; Sail. Jug. 28.

4 Ibid. 38, 39. 6 i bid- 40 .

6 Sallust, Jug. 63; Plut. Marius, 2, 3. For the question as to the position of his parents, see Madvig, Verf. i. 170; Diod. xxxiv. 38.

7 Sallust, Jug. 73.

8 Ibid. 114. For the chronology of the Jugurthine war, see Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iii. 398; Pelham, Journ. of Phil. vii. 91 ; Meinel, Zur Chronologie des jugurthinischen Kriegs (1883).

'Livy, Epit. Ixvii.; Plut. Mar. 12; Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iii. 414 seq.

10 Livy, Epit. Ixix. ; Appian, B.C. i. 28 seq.

652. 653.

visions. 11 The laws were carried, but the triumph of the popular leaders was short-lived. Their recklessness and violence had alienated all classes in Rome; and their period of office was drawing to a close. At the elections fresh rioting took place, and Marius as consul was called upon by the senate to protect the state against his own partisans. Saturninus and Glaucia surrendered, but while the senate was discussing their fate they were surrounded and murdered by their opponents.

The popular party had been worsted once more in their struggle with the senate, but none the less their alliance with Marius, and the position in which their votes placed him, marked an epoch in the history of the revolution. The transference of the political leadership to a consul who was nothing if not a soldier was at once a confession of the insufficiency of the purely civil authority of the tribunate and a dangerous encouragement of military interference in political controversies. The consequences were already foreshadowed by the special provisions made by Saturninus for Marius's veterans, and in the active part taken by them in the passing of his laws. Indirectly, too, Marius, though no politician, played an important part in this new departure. His military /unitary reforms 12 at once democratized the army and attached reforms it more closely to its leader for the time being. He of swept away the last traces of civil distinctions of rank Mariu*. or wealth within the legion, admitted to its ranks all classes, and substituted voluntary enlistment under a popular general for the old-fashioned compulsory levy. The efficiency of the legion was increased at the cost of a complete severance of the ties which bound it to the civil community and to the civil authorities.

The next important crisis was due partly to the rivalry which had been growing more bitter each year between the senate and the commercial class, and partly to the long-impending question of the enfranchisement of the Italian allies. The publicani, negotiatores and others, who constituted what was now becoming known as the equestrian order (see EQUITES), had made unscrupulous use of their control of the courts and especially of the quaestio de repetundis against their natural rivals, the official class in the provinces. The threat of prosecution before a hostile jury was held over the head of every governor, legate and quaestor who ventured to interfere with their operations in the provinces. The average official preferred to connive at their exactions; the bolder ones paid with fines and even exile for their courage. In 92 the necessity for a reform was 662.

proved beyond a doubt by the scandalous condemnation o/, coo . of P. RutiliusRuf us, 13 ostensibly on a charge of extortion, teat of in reality as the reward of his efforts to check the the extortions of the Roman equites in Asia. The diffi- Italian culties of the Italian question were more serious. That allies. the Italian allies were discontented was notorious. After nearly two centuries of close alliance, of common dangers and victories, they now eagerly coveted as a boon that complete amalgamation with Rome which they had at first resented as a dishonour. But, unfortunately, Rome had grown more exclusive in proportion as the value set upon Roman citizenship increased. During the last forty years feelings of hope and disappointment had rapidly succeeded each other; Marcus Fulvius Flaccus, Gaius Gracchus, Saturninus, had all held out promises of relief and nothing had yet been done. On each occasion they had crowded to Rome, full of eager expectation, only to be harshly ejected from the city by the consul's orders. 14 The justice of their claims could hardly be denied, the danger of continuing to ignore them was obvious yet the difficulties in the way of granting them were formidable in the extreme, and from a higher than a merely selfish point of view there was much to be said against the revolution involved in so sudden and enormous an enlargement of the citizen body.

11 For the leges Appuleioe, see SATURNINUS, L. APPULEIUS, and authorities there quoted.

12 Sallust, Jug. 86, " ipse interea milites scribere, non more majorum neque ex classibus, sed uti cujusque cupido erat, capite censos plerosque." For details, cf. Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iii. 456 seq.; Madvig, Verf. ii. 468, 493; Marquardt, Stoatsv. iii. 430 seq.

13 Livy, Epit. Ixx.; Veil. ii. 13.

14 Z,e* Junta, Cic. De Off. iii. ii, 47; lex Licinia Mucia, Cic. Pro Corn. fr. 10; Ascon. p. 60.

Marcus Livius Drusus (q.v.), who as tribune gallantly took up the task of reform, is claimed by Cicero 1 as a member of that Manas party of the centre to which he belonged himself. Livius Noble, wealthy and popular, he seems to have hoped Drusus, t be able by the weight of his position and character 663. ^ o rescue t^e burning questions of the day from the grasp of extreme partisans and to settle them peacefully and equitably. But he, like Cicero after him, had to find to his cost that there was no room in the fierce strife of Roman politics for moderate counsels. His proposal to reform the law courts excited the equestrian order and their friends in the senate to fury. The agrarian and corn laws which he coupled with it 2 alienated many more in the senate, and roused the old antipopular party feeling; finally, his known negotiations with the Italians were eagerly misrepresented to the jealous and excited people as evidence of complicity with a widespread conspiracy against Rome. His laws were carried, but the senate pronounced The them null and void. 3 Drusus was denounced in the Social senate house as a traitor, and on his way home was War, struck down by the hand of an unknown assassin. His 90-89= assassination was the signal for an outbreak which had been secretly prepared for some time before. Throughout the highlands of central and southern Italy the flower of the Italian peoples rose as one man. 4 Etruria and Umbria held aloof; the isolated Latin colonies stood firm; but the Sabellian clans, north and south, the Latinized Marsi and Paeligni, as well as the Oscan-speaking Samnites and Lucanians, rushed to arms. No time was lost in proclaiming their plans for the future. A new Italian state was to be formed. The Paelignian town of Corfinium was selected as its capital and rechristened with the proud name of Italica. All Italians were to be citizens of this new metropolis, and here were to be the place of assembly and the senate house. A senate of 500 members and a magistracy resembling that of Rome completed a constitution which adhered closely to the very political traditions which its authors had most reason to abjure.

Now, as always in the face of serious danger, the action of Rome was prompt and resolute. Both consuls took the field ; 6 with each were five legates, among them the veteran Marius and his destined rival L. Cornelius Sulla, and even freedmen were pressed into service with the legions. But the first year's campaign opened disastrously. In central Italy the northern Sabellians, and in the south the Samnites, defeated the forces opposed to them. And though before the end of the year Marius and Sulla in the north, and the consul Caesar himself in Campania, succeeded in inflicting severe blows on the enemy, and on the Marsi especially, it is not surprising that, with an empty treasury, with the insurgents' strength still unbroken, and with rumours of disaffection in the loyal districts, opinion in Rome should have turned in the direction of the more liberal policy which had been so often scornfully rejected and in favour of some compromise which should check the spread of the revolt, and possibly sow discord among their enemies. Towards the close of the year 90 the consul L. Julius Caesar (killed Lex Julia by Fimbria in 87) carried the lex Julia, 6 by which t ' le R man franchise was offered to all communities which had not as yet revolted; early in the next year (89) the Julian law was supplemented by the lex Plautia Papiria, introduced by two of the tribunes, M. Plautius Silvanus and C. Papirius Carbo Arvina, which 1 Cic. De oral. i. 7, 24 f., and De domo, 19, 50; Appian, B.C. i. 35; Diod. Sic. xxxvii. 10; Ihne, bk. vii. cap. xiii.

2 For the provisions of the leges Liviae, see App. B.C. \. 35; Livy, Epit. Ixxi. They included, according to Pliny, N.H. xxxiii. 3, a proposal for the debasement of the coinage.

3 Cic. Pro domo, 16, 41.

4 For the Social War, see, besides Mommsen, Ihne and Lange, Kiene, Der romische Bundesgenossenkrieg (Leipzig, 1845).

6 App. B.C. i. 39-49; Livy, Epit. Ixxii.-lxxvi.

6 For the lex Julia, see Cicero, Pro Balbo, 8, 21 ; Cell. iv. 4; App. B.C. i. 49. For the lex Plautia Papiria, see Cic. Pro Archia, 4, 7, andSchol. Bob. p. 353.

p"au'/a 665.

enacted that any citizen of an allied community then domiciled in Italy might obtain the franchise by giving in his name to a praetor in Rome within sixty days. A third law (lex Calpurnia), apparently passed at the same time, empowered Roman magistrates in the field to bestow the franchise there and then upon all who were willing to receive it. This sudden opening of the closed gates of Roman citizenship was completely successful, and its effects were at once visible in the diminished vigour of the insurgents. By the end of 89 the Samnites and 66g Lucanians were left alone in their obstinate hostility to Rome, and neither, thanks to Sulla's brilliant campaign in Samnium, had for the moment any strength left for active aggression.

The termination of the Social War brought with it no peace in Rome. The old quarrels were renewed with increased bitterness, and the newly enfranchised Italians themselves complained as bitterly of the restriction 7 which robbed them of their due share of political influence by allowing them to vote only in a specified number of tribes. The senate itself was distracted by violent personal rivalries and all these feuds, animosities and grievances were aggravated by the widespread economic distress and ruin which affected all classes. 8 Lastly, war with Mithradates VI. had been declared; it was notorious that the privilege of commanding the force to be sent against him would be keenly contested, and that the contest would lie between the veteran Marius and L. Cornelius Sulla.' It was in an atmosphere thus charged with- the elements of disturbance that P. Sulpicius Rufus as tribune 10 brought forward his laws. He proposed (i) that the com- p. saimand of the Mithradatic war should be given to picius Marius, (2) that the new citizens should be distributed Rutu*, through all the tribes, (3) that the freedmen should no longer be confined to the four city tribes, (4) that any senator owing more than 2000 denarii should lose his seat, (5) that those exiled on suspicion of complicity with the Italian revolt should be recalled. These proposals inevitably provoked a storm, and both sides were ominously ready for violent measures. The consuls, in order to prevent legislation, proclaimed a public holiday. Sulpicius replied by arming his followers and driving the consuls from the forum. The proclamation was withdrawn and the laws carried, but Sulpicius's triumph was short-lived. From Nola in Campania, where lay the legions commanded by him in the Social War, Sulla advanced on Rome, and for the first time a Roman consul entered the city at the head of the legions of the Republic. Resistance was hopeless. Marius and Sulpicius fled, 11 and Sulla, summoning the assembly of the centuries, proposed the measures he considered necessary for the public security, the most important being a provision that the sanction of the senate should be necessary before any proposal was introduced to the assembly. 12 Then, after waiting in Rome long enough to hold the 66T consular elections, he left for Asia early in 87.

Sulla had conquered, but his victory cost the Republic dear. He had first taught political partisans to look for final success, not to a majority of votes in the forum or campus, Marius but to the swords of the soldiery. The lesson was well aoa learnt. Shortly after his departure L. Cornelius Cinna as consul revived the proposals of Sulpicius; 13 his colleague, Gnaeus Octavius, at the head of an armed force fell upon the new citizens who had collected in crowds to vote, 7 Veil. ii. 20; App. B.C. i. 49, 53. It is impossible to reconcile in detail the statements of these authors.

8 App. B.C. i. 54, and Mithr. 22; Oros. v. 18; Livy, Epit. Ixxiv.

It had been already declared a consular province for 87, and early in 88 seems to have been assigned to Sulla by decree of the senate.

10 See SULPICIUS RUFUS, P.

"Marius finally escaped to Africa (see MARIUS); Sulpicius was taken and killed ; App. i. 60.

12 App. B.C. i. 59, lofilrtn &irpo0o<!\ivrov it T&V Srjitov kr&ptoQai. For the other laws mentioned by Appian, see Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iii. 541 f.

u Livy, Epit. Ixxix. ; Veil. ii. 20.

(REPUBLIC and the forum was heaped high with the bodies of the slain. 1 Cinna fled, but fled, like Sulla, to the legions. When the senate declared him deposed from his consulship, he replied by invoking the aid of the soldiers in Campania in behalf of the violated rights of the people and the injured dignity of the consulship, and, like Sulla, found them ready to follow where he led. The neighbouring Italian communities, who had lost many citizens in the recent massacre, sent their new champion men and money; 2 while from Africa, whither he had escaped after Sulla's entry into Rome, came Marius with 1000 Numidian horsemen. The senate had prepared for a desperate defence, but fortune was adverse, and after a brief resistance they gave way. Cinna was acknowledged as consul, the sentence of outlawry passed on Marius was revoked and Cinna and Marius entered Rome with their troops. Marius's thirst for revenge was gratified by a frightful massacre, and he lived long enough to be nominated consul for the seventh time. But he held his Ofig consulship cnly a few weeks. Early in 86 he died, and for the next three years Cinna ruled Rome. Constitu' ' ' tional government was virtually suspended. For 85 and 84 Cinna nominated himself and a trusted colleague as consuls. 3 The state was, as Cicero 4 says, without lawful authority. 6 One important matter was carried through the registration in all the tribes of the newly enfranchised Italians, 6 but beyond this little was done. The attention of Cinna and his friends was in truth engrossed by the ever-present dread of Sulla's return from Asia. The consul of 86, L. Valerius Flaccus (who had been consul with Marius in 100 B.C.), sent out to supersede him, was murdered by his own soldiers at Nicomedia. 7 In 85 Sulla, though disowned by his government, con- cluded a peace with Mithradates. 8 In 84, after settling affairs in Asia and crushing Flaccus's successor, C. Flavius The Fimbria, he crossed into Greece, and in the spring of nturn of 83 landed at Brundusium with 40,000 soldiers and a large following of Imigr6 nobles. Cinna was dead, 9 murdered like Flaccus by his mutinous soldiers; his most trusted colleague, Cn. Papirius Carbo, was commanding as proconsul in Cisalpine Gaul; and the resistance offered to Sulla's advance was slight. At Capua, Sulla routed the forces of one consul, Gaius Norbanus; at Teanum the troops of the other went over in a body to the side of the outlawed proconsul. After a winter spent in Campania he pressed forward to Rome, defeated the younger Marius (consul, 82) near Praeneste, and entered the city without further opposition. In north Italy the success of his lieutenants,Q. Caecilius Metellus Pius (son of Metellus Numidicus), Cn. Pompeius and Marcus Crassus, had been fully as decisive. Cisalpine Gaul, Umbria and Etruria had all been won for Sulla, and the two principal leaders on the other side, Carbo and Norbanus, .had each fled, one to Rhodes, the other to Africa. Only one foe remained to be conquered. The Samnites and Lucanians whom Cinna had conciliated, and who saw in Sulla their bitterest foe, were for the last time in arms, and had already joined forces with the remains of the Marian army close to Rome. The decisive battle was fought under the walls of the city, and ended in the complete defeat of the Marians and Italians (battle of the Colline Gate). 10 For a period of nearly ten years Rome and Italy had been distracted by civil war. Sulla was now called upon to heal 1 Cic. Pro Sestio, 36, 77; Catil. iii. 10, 24.

2 Tibur and Praeneste especially.

3 The consuls of 86, 85, 84 were all nominated without election. Livy, Epit. Ixxx. Ixxxiii. ; App. i. 75.

4 Brut. 227.

5 The nobles had fled to Sulla in large numbers; Veil. ii. 23.

6 This work was accomplished apparently by the censors of 86; but cf. Lange iii. 133; Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iv. 70; Livy, Epit. Ixxxiv.

7 Livy, Epit. Ixxxii ; Appian, Mithr. 52 ; Plut. Sulla, 23.

8 Livy, Epit. Ixxxiii. ; Veil. ii. 23 ; Plut. Sulla, 24. 8 In 84; App. B.C. \. 78; Livy, Epit. Ixxxiii.

10 Livy, Epit. Ixxxviii., " cum Samnitibus ante portam Collinam debellavit "; Plut. Sulla, 29, and Crassus, 6. According to App. i. 93, and Livy, loc cit., 8000 captives were massacred. Florus, iii. 21, gives 4000. Praeneste surrendered, was razed to the ground, and its population put to the sword.

672.

the divisions which rent the state asunder, to set in working again the machinery of civil government and above suti's all so to modify it as to meet the altered conditions, dictatorand to fortify it against the dangers which visibly *t>ip, threatened it in the future. The real charge against 8I ~ 673 - Sulla 11 is not that he failed to accomplish all this, for to do so was beyond the powers even of a man so able, resolute and self-confident as Sulla, armed though he was with absolute authority and backed by overwhelming military strength and the prestige of unbroken success. He stands convicted rather of deliberately aggravating some and culpably ignoring others of the evils he should have tried to cure, and of contenting himself with a party triumph when he should have aimed at the regeneration and confirmation of the whole state. His victory was instantly followed, not by any measures of conciliation, but by a series of massacres, proscriptions and confiscations, of which almost the least serious consequence was the immediate loss of life which they entailed. 12 From this time forward the fear of proscription and confiscation recurred as a possible consequence of every political ,///,/ crisis, and it was with difficulty that Caesar himself Suiiaa dissipated the belief that his victory would be followed proscripby a Sullan reign of terror. The legacy of hatred and a as - discontent which Sulla left behind him was a constant source of disquiet and danger. In the children of the proscribed, whom he excluded from holding office, and the dispossessed owners of the confiscated lands, every agitator found ready and willing allies. 13 The moneyed men of the equestrian order were more than ever hostile to the senatorial government, which they now identified with the man who cherished towards them a peculiar hatred, 14 and whose creatures had hunted them down like dogs. The attachment which the new Italian citizens might in time have learnt to feel for the old republican constitution was nipped in the bud by the massacres at Praeneste and Norba, by the harsh treatment of the ancient towns of Etruria, and by the ruthless desolation of Samnium and Lucania. 15 Quite as fatal were the results to the economic prosperity of the peninsula. Sulla's confiscations, following on the civil and social wars, opened the doors wide for a long train of evils. The veterans whom he planted on the lands he had seized 16 did nothing for agriculture, and swelled the growing numbers of the turbulent and discontented. 17 The " Sullan men " became as great an object of fear and dislike as the "Sullan reign." 18 The latif undid increased with startling rapidity whole territories passing into the hands of greedy partisans. 19 Wide tracts of land, confiscated but never allotted, ran to waste. 20 In all but a few districts of Italy the free population finally and completely disappeared from the open country; and life and property were rendered insecure by the brigandage which now developed unchecked, and in which the herdsmen slaves played a prominent part. The outbreaks of Spartacus in 73, and of Catiline ten years later, were significant commentaries on this part of Sulla's work. 21 His constitutional legislation, while it included many useful administrative reforms, is marked by as violent a spirit of partisanship, and as apparently wilful a tlon of blindness to the future. There-establishment on a legal Su " a ' basis of the ascendancy which custom had so long accorded to the 11 Compare especially Mqmmsen's brilliant chapter, which is, however, too favourable (bk. iv. cap. x.),and also Lange (iii. 146 seq.). Further references will be found in the article SULLA (q.v.).

12 App. i. 95 seq.; Dio Cassius, fr. 109; Plut. Sulla, 31. The number of the proscribed is given as 4700 (Val. Max.), including, according to Appian, 2600 members of the equestrian order.

13 .E.g. Catiline, in 63. Sail. Cat. 21, 37. For the liberi proscriptorum, see Veil. ii. 28. " Cic. Pro. Cluent. 55, 151.

15 Cic. Phil. v. 16, 43, " tot municipiorum maximae calamitates." Cic. Pro Domo, 30, 79; Cic. Ad Alt. i. 19; Florus iii. 21; Strabo, 223, 254.

16 Livy, Epit. Ixxxix.; App. B.C. {. 100; Cicero, Catil. ii. 79. 20.

17 Sail. Cat. 28. w Cic. Agr. ii. 269.

19 Cic. Agr. ii. 26, 69 seq.; 28, 78; iii. 2, 8 the territories of Praeneste and of the Hirpini. 20 Ibid. iii. 4, 14.

21 See especially Cicero's oration Pro Tullio. For the pastores of Apulia, Sail. Cat. 28.

666.

650.

senate was his main object. With this purpose he had already, when consul in 88, made the senatus auctoritas legally necessary for proposals to the assembly. He now as dictator 1 followed this up by crippling the power of the magistracy, which had been the most effective weapon in the hands of the senate's opponents. The legislative freedom of the tribunes was already hampered by the necessity of obtaining the senate's sanction; in addition, Sulla restricted their wide powers of interference (intercessio) to their original purpose of protecting individual plebeians, 2 and discredited the office by prohibiting a tribune from holding any subsequent office in the state.* The control of the courts (quaestiones perpetuae) was taken from the equestrian order and restored to the senate. 4 To prevent the people from suddenly installing and keeping in high office a second Marius, he re-enacted the old law against re-election, 6 and made legally binding the custom which required a man to mount up gradually to the consulship through the lower offices. 6 His increase of the number of praetors from six to eight, 7 and of quaestors to twenty, 8 though required by administrative necessities, tended, by enlarging the numbers and further dividing the authority of the magistrates, to render them still more dependent upon the central direction of the senate. Lastly, he replaced the pontifical and augural colleges in the hands of the senatorial nobles, by enacting that vacancies in them should, as before the lex Domitia (104), be filled up by co-optation. 9 It cannot be said that Sulla was successful in fortifying the republican system against the dangers which menaced it from without. He accepted as an accomplished fact the enfranchisement of the Italians, 10 but he made no provision to guard against the consequent reduction of the comilia to an absurdity, 11 and with them of the civic government which rested upon them, or to organize an effective administrative system for the Italian communities. 12

1 For Sulla's dictatorship as in itself a novelty, see App. i. 98 ; Plut. Sulla, 33; Cic. Ad Alt. 9, 15; Cic. De Legg. i. 15, 42.

2 Cic. De Legg. iii. 9, 22, " injuriae faciendae potestatem ademit, auxilii ferendi reliquit." Cf. Cic. Verr. i. 60, 155; Livy, Epit. Ixxxix.

>Cic. Pro Cornel, fr. 78; Ascon. In Corn. pp. 59, 70; Appian i. 100.

4 Veil. ii. 32; Tac. Ann. xi. 22; Cic. Verr. Act. i. 13, 37- 6 App. B.C. i. 100; cf. Livy vii. 42 (3^2 B.C.), " ne quis eundem magistratum intra decem annos caperet.' 8 The custom had gradually established itself. Cf . Livy xxxn. 7. The " certus ordo magistratuum " legalized by Sulla was quaestorship, praetorship, consulate; App. i. 100.

7 Pompon. De orig. juris (Dig. \. 2, 2, 32); Veil. ii. 89. Compare also Cicero, In Pison. 15, 35 with Cic. Pro Milone, 15, 39. The increase was connected with his extension of the system of quaestiones perpetuae, which threw more work on the praetors as the magistrates in charge of the courts.

8 Tac. Ann. xi. 22. The quaestorship henceforward carried with it the right to be called up to the senate. By increasing the number of quaestors, Sulla provided for the supply of ordinary vacancies in the senate and restricted the censors' freedom of choice in filling them up. Fragments of the lex Cornelia de XX quaestoribus survive. See C.I.L. i. 108; Bruns, Fontes juris Romani (ed. 6), p. 91.

9 Dio xxxvii. 37; Ps. Ascon. 102 (Orelli). He also increased their numbers; Livy, Epit. Ixxxix.

10 He did propose to deprive several communities which had joined Cinna of the franchise, but the deprivation was not carried into effect; Cic. Pro domo, 30, 79.

11 The inadequacy of the comilia as a representative body was increased by the unequal distribution of the new citizens amongst the thirty-five tribes, each of which formed a single voting unit. Some tribes represented only a thinly populated district in the Campagna with one or two outlying communities, others included large and populous territories. See Mommsen, Staatsr. iii. 187; Hermes, xxii. 101 sqq. . .

12 Sulla does not appear to have passed any general municipal law; the necessary resettlement of the local constitutions after the Social War was seemingly carried out by commissioners. The fragment of a municipal charter found at Tarentum (Ephem. epigr. ix. i, Dessau, Inscr. Lai. sel. 6086) is probably a specimen of such leges datae.

Of all men, too, Sulla had the best reason to appreciate the dangers to be feared from the growing independence of governors and generals in the provinces, and from the transformation of the old civic militia into a group of professional armies, devotedonly to a successful leader, and with the weakest possible sense of allegiance to the state. He had himself, as proconsul of Asia, contemptuously and successfully defied the home government, and he, more than any other Roman general, had taught his soldiers to look only to their leader, and to think only of booty. 13 Yet, beyond a few inadequate regulations, there is no evidence that Sulla dealt with these burning questions, the settlement of which was among the greatest of the achievements of Augustus. 14 One administrative reform of real importance must, lastly, be set down to his credit. The judicial procedure first established in 149 for the trial of cases of magisterial extortion in the provinces, and applied between 149 605-673 and 81 to cases of treason and bribery, Sulla extended so as to bring under it the chief criminal offences, and thus laid the foundations of the Roman criminal law. 1 * The Sullan system stood for nine years, and was then overthrown as it had been established by a successful soldier. It was the fortune of Cn. Pompeius, a favourite officer overof Sulla, first of all to violate in his own person throw the fundamental principles of the constitution re- of the established by his old chief, and then to overturn it. ^""MU. In Spain the Marian governor Q. Sertorius (see tioa. SERTORIUS) had defeated one after another of the pro- 70-664. consuls sent out by the senate, and was already in 77 master of all Hither Spain. To meet the crisis, Pompey, who was not yet thirty, and had never held even the quaestorship, was sent out to Spain with proconsular authority. 16 Still Sertorius held out, until in 73 he was foully murdered by his own officers. The native tribes 681.

who had loyally stood by him submitted, and Pompey 6gJ early in 71 returned with his troops to Italy, where, during his absence in Spain, an event had occurred which had shown Roman society with startling plainness how near it stood to revolution. In 73 Spartacus, 17 a Thracian slave, fg^ escaped with seventy others from a gladiators' training school at Capua. In an incredibly short time he found himself at the head of 70,000 runaway slaves, outlaws, brigands and impoverished peasants, and for two years terrorized Italy, routed the legions sent against him, and even threatened Rome. He was at length defeated and slain by the praetor, M. Licinius Crassus, in Apulia. In Rome itself the various classes and parties hostile to the Sullan system had, 676f ever since Sulla's death in 78, been incessantly agitating for the repeal of his most obnoxious laws, and needed only "Sail. Cat. ii. " L. Sulla exercitum, quo sibi fidum faceret, contra morem majorum luxuriose nimisque liberaliter habuerat."

14 There was a lex Cornelia de prmnnciis ordinandis, but only two of its provisions are known; (l) that a magistrate sent out with the imperiam should retain it till he re-entered the city (Cic. Ad Fam. i. 9, 25), a provision which increased rather than diminished his freedom of action; (2) that an outgoing governor should leave his province within thirty days after his successor's arrival (Cic. Ad Fam. iii. 6. 3). A lex Cornelia de majestate contained, it is true, a definition of treason evidently framed in the light of recent experience. The magistrate was forbidden " exire de provincia, educere exercitum, bellum sua sponte gerere, in regnum injussu populi ac senatus accedere," Cic. Pis. 21, 50. Sulla also added one to the long list of laws dealing with extortion in the provinces. But the danger lay, not in the want of laws, but in the want of security for their observance by an absolutely autocratic proconsul. The present writer cannot agree with those who would include among Sulla's laws one retaining consuls and praetors in Rome for their year of office and then sending them out to a province._ This was becoming the common practice before 81. After 81 it is invariable for praetors, as needed for the judicial work, and invariable but for two exceptions in the case of consuls; but nowhere is there a hint that there had been any legislation on the subject, and there are indications that it was convenience and not law which maintained the arrangement.^ Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, iv. 118 sqq.; Marquardt, Staatsverui. i. 518; cf. also Cic. All. 8, 15; " consules, quibus more majorum concessum est vel omnes adire provincias."

16 For this, the most lasting of Sulla's reforms, see Mommsen, Htst. of Rome, iv. 127 sqq. ; Rein, Criminal- Recht; Zumpt, Criminal-Profess d. Romer; Greenidge, Legal Procedure of Cicero's Time, p. 415 sqq- 16 Plut. Pomp. 17; Livy, Epit. xci. For Pompey's earlier life, see POMPEY. " For the Slave War, see SPARTACUS.

a leader in order successfully to attack a government discredited by failure at home and abroad. With the return of Pompey Pom e f rom Spain their opportunity came. Pompey, who a* consul, understood politics as little as Marius, was anxious to obtain a triumph, the consulship for the next year (70), and as the natural consequence of this an important command in the East. The opposition wanted his name and support, and a bargain was soon struck. Pompey and with him Marcus Licinius Crassus, the real conqueror of Spartacus, were elected consuls, almost in the presence of their troops, which lay encamped outside the gates in readiness to assist at the triumph and ovation granted to their respective leaders. Pompey lost no time in performing his part of the agreement. The tribunes regained their prerogatives. 1 The " perpetual courts " (quaestiones perpetuae) were taken out of the hands of the senatorial judices, who had outdone the equestrian order in scandalous corruption, 2 and finally the censors, the first since 86 B.C., purged the senate of the more worthless and disreputable of Sulla's partisans. 3 The victory was complete; but for the future its chief significance lay in the clearness with which it showed that the final decision in matters political lay with neither of the two great parties in Rome, but with the holder of the military authority. The tribunes ceased to be political leaders and became lieutenants of the military commanders, and the change was fatal to the dignity of politics in the city. Men became conscious of the unreality of the old constitutional controversies, indifferent to the questions which agitated the forum and the curia, and contemptuously ready to alter or disregard the constitution itself when it stood in the way of interests nearer to their hearts.

When his consulship ended, Pompey impatiently awaited at the hands of the politicians he had befriended the further Oablaiaa && f a foreign command. He declined an ordinary and province, and from the end of 70 to 67 he remained Maniiian at R ome j n a somewhat affectedly dignified seclusion. 4 But in 67 and 66 the laws of Gabinius and Manilius gave him all and more than all that he expected (see 687, 688. p OMPEY ). By the former he obtained the sole command for three years against the Mediterranean pirates. 6 He was to have supreme authority over all Roman magistrates in the provinces throughout the Mediterranean and over the coasts for 50 miles inland. Fifteen legati, all of praetorian rank, were assigned to him, with two hundred ships, and as many troops as he thought desirable. The Maniiian law transferred from Lucullus and Glabrio to Pompey the conduct of the Mithradatic War in Asia, and with it the entire control of Roman policy and interests in the East. 6 The unrepublican character of the position thus granted to Pompey, and the dangers of the precedent established, were clearly enough pointed out by such moderate men as Q. Lutatius Catulus, the " father of the senate," and by the orator Hortensius but in vain. Both laws were supported, not only by the tribunes and the populace, but by the whole influence of the publicani and negotiatores, whose interests in the East were at stake.

Pompey left Rome in 67. In a marvellously short space of time he freed the Mediterranean from the Cilician pirates and established Roman authority in Cilicia itself. He then crushed Mithradates, added Syria to the list of Roman provinces, 1 The exact provisions of Pompey's law are nowhere given ; Livy, Epit. xcvii., " tribuniciam potestatem restituerunt." Cf. Veil. ii. 30. A lex Aurelia, in 75, had already repealed the law disqualifying a tribune for further office; Cic. Corn. fr. 78.

2 This_was the work of L. Aurelius Cotta, praetor in this year. The judices were to be taken in equal proportions from senators, equites and tribuni aerarii. For the latter and for the law generally, see Lange, R. Alt. iii. 193; Greenidge, Legal Procedure of Cicero's Time, pp. 443 sqq. ; and article AERARIUM. Compare also Cicero's language, In Verr., Act. i. i. The prosecution of Verres shortly preceded the lex Aurelia.

8 Livy, Epit. xcviii. Sixty-four senators were expelled. Cf. Plut. Pomp. 22.

4 Veil. ii. 31 ; Plut. Pomp. 23.

6 Plut. Pomp. 25; Dio xxxvi. 6; Livy, Epit. c.

6 Cic. Pro Lege Manilla; Dio xxxvi. 25; Plut. Pomp. 30.

687, 692.

689.

and led the Roman legions to the Euphrates and the Caspian, leaving no power capable of disputing with Rome the sovereignty of western Asia. 7 He did not return to Italy till towards the end of 62. The interval was marked in Rome by the rise to political importance of Caesar and Cicero, and by Catiline's attempt at revolution. As Caesar the nephew of Marius and the son-in-law of Cinna, Caesar possessed a strong hereditary claim to the leadership of the popular and Marian party. 8 He had already taken part in the agitation for the restoration of the tribunate; he had supported the Maniiian law; and, when Pompey's withdrawal left the field clear for other competitors, he stepped at once into the front rank on the popular side.' He took upon himself, as their nearest representative, the task of clearing the memory and avenging the wrongs of the great popular leaders, Marius, Cinna and Saturninus. He publicly reminded the people of Marius's services, and set up again upon the Capitol the trophies of the Cimbric War. He endeavoured to bring to justice, not only the ringleaders in Sulla's bloody work of proscription, but even the murderers of Saturninus, and vehemently pleaded the cause of the children of the proscribed. While thus carrying on in genuine Roman fashion the feud of his family, he attracted the sympathies of the Italians by his efforts to procure the Roman franchise for the Latin communities beyond the Po, and won the affections of the populace in Rome and its immediate neighbourhood by the splendour of the games which he gave as curule aedile (65), and by his lavish expenditure upon the improvement of the Appian Way. But these measures were with him only means to the further end of creating for himself a position such as that which Pompey had already won; and this ulterior aim he pursued with an audacious indifference to constitutional forms and usages. His coalition with Crassus, soon after Pompey's departure, secured him an ally whose colossal wealth and wide financial connexions were of inestimable value, and whose vanity and inferiority of intellect rendered him a^ willing tool. The story of his attempted coup d'etat in January 65 is probably false, 10 but it is evident that by the beginning of 63 he was bent on reaping the reward of his exertions by obtaining from the people an extraordinary command abroad, which should secure his position before Pompey's return; and the agrarian law proposed early that year by the tribune P. Servilius Rullus had for its object the creation, in favour of Caesar and Crassus, of a commission with powers so wide as to place its members almost on a level with Pompey himself. 11 It was at this moment when all seemed going well, that Caesar's hopes were dashed to the ground by Catiline's desperate outbreak, which not only discredited every one connected with the popular party, but directed the suspicions of the well-to-do classes against Caesar himself, as a possible accomplice in Catiline's revolutionary schemes. 12 The same wave of indignation and suspicion which for the moment checked Caesar's rise carried Marcus Tullius Cicero to the height of his fortunes. Cicero, as a politician, has been equally misjudged by friends and foes. That he was deficient in courage, that he was vain, and that he attempted the impossible, may be admitted at once. But he was neither a brilliant and unscrupulous adventurer nor an aimless trimmer, nor yet a devoted champion merely of senatorial * See POMPEY and MITHRADATES.

8 For his early life, see CAESAR.

9 Prof. Beesly has vainly endeavoured to show that Catiline and not Caesar was the popular leader from 67 to 63. That this is the inference intentionally conveyed by Sallust, in order to ' screen Caesar, is true, but the inference is a false one.

10 The story is so told by Suetonius, Jul. 8. In Sallust, Cat. 18, it appears as an mtrigue originating with Catiline, and Caesar's name is omitted.

11 Cic. Agr. ii. 6, 15, " nihil aliud act urn nisi ut decem reges constit uerentur. ' ' 12 That Caesar and Crassus had supported Catiline for the consulship in 65 is certain, and they were suspected naturally enough of favouring his designs in 63, but their complicity is in the highest degree improbable.

ascendancy. 1 He was a representative man, with a numerous following, and a policy which was naturally suggested to him by the circumstances of his birth, connexions and profession, and which, impracticable as it proved to be, was yet consistent, intelligible and high-minded. Born at Arpinum, he cherished like all Arpinates the memory of his great fellow-townsman Marius, the friend of the Italians, the saviour of Italy and the irreconcilable foe of Sulla and the nobles. A " municipal " himself, his chosen friends and his warmest supporters were found among the well-to-do classes in the Italian towns. 2 Unpopular with the Roman aristocracy, who despised him as a peregrinus, 3 and with the Roman populace, he was the trusted leader of the Italian middle class, " the true Roman people," as he proudly styles them. It was they who carried his election 691 696 ^ or * ne consulship 4 (63), who in 58 insisted on his recall 7gs from exile, 5 and it was his influence with them which made Caesar so anxious to win him over in 49. He represented their antipathy alike to socialistic schemes and to aristocratic exclusiveness, and their old-fashioned simplicity of life in contrast with the cosmopolitan luxury of the capital. 6 By birth, too, he belonged to the equestrian order, the foremost representatives of which were indeed still the publicani and negolialores, but which since the enfranchisement of Italy included also the substantial burgesses of the Italian towns and the smaller " squires " of the country districts. With them, too, Cicero was at one in their dread of democratic excesses and their social and political jealousy of the nobiles. 7 Lastly, as a lawyer and a scholar, he was passionately attached to the ancient constitution. His political ideal was the natural outcome of these circumstances. He advocated the maintenance of the old constitution, but not as it was understood by the extreme politicians of the right and left. The senate was to be the supreme directing council, 8 but the senate of Cicero's dreams was not an oligarchic assemblage of nobles, but a body freely open to all citizens, and representing the worth of the community. 9 The magistrates, while deferring to the senate's authority, were to be at once vigorous and public-spirited; and the assembly itself which elected the magistrates and passed the laws was to consist, not of the " mob of the forum," but of the true Roman people throughout Italy. 10 For the realization of this ideal he looked, above all things, to the establishment of cordial relations between the senate and nobles in Rome and the great middle class of Italy represented by the equestrian order, between the capital and the country towns and districts. This was the concordia ordinum, the consensus Italiae, for which he laboured. 11 Cicero's election to the consulship for 63 over the heads of Caesar's nominees, Antonius and Catiline, was mainly The the work of the Italian middle class, already coa . rendered uneasy both by the rumours which were rife of revolutionary schemes and of Caesar's boundless dJ='<S9/' ambition, and by the numerous disquieting signs of disturbance noticeable in Italy. The new consul vigorously set himself to discharge the trust placed in him. He defeated the insidious proposals of Rullus for Caesar's aggrandizement and assisted in quashing the prosecution of Gaius Rabirius (q.i>.). But with the consular elections in the autumn of 63 a fresh danger arose from a different quarter. The " conspiracy of Catiline" (see CATILINE) was not the work of the popular 1 Mommsen is throughout unfair to Cicero, as also are Drumann and Professor Beesly. The best estimates of Cicero's political position are those given by Mr Strachan- Davidson in his Cicero (1894), and by Professor Tyrrell in his Introductions to his edition of Cicero's Letters.

* Cic. Ad Alt. i. 19, 4, " noster exercitus . . . locupletium."

3 Cic. Pro Sulla, 7, 22; Sail. Cat. 31, " inquilinus urbis Romae."

4 See the De petitione consulates, passim.

6 De Domo, 28, 75; Pro Plancio, 41, 97.

Cic. Pro Quinctw, 8, 31 ; Pro Cluentio, 46, 153.

7 Cic. In Verr. ii. 73; De Pet. Cons. i. He shared with them their dislike of Sulla, as the foe of their order; Pro Cluentio, 55, 151- 8 De Legg. iii. 12. Pro Sestio, 65. 136; De Legg. iii. 4. 10 Pro Sestio, 45. u Ad Alt. i. 18.

party, and still less was it an unselfish attempt at reform; Catiline himself was a patrician, who had held high office, and possessed considerable ability and courage; but he was bankrupt in character and in purse, and two successive defeats in the consular elections had rendered him desperate. To retrieve his broken fortunes by violence was a course which was only too readily suggested by the history of the last forty years, and materials for a conflagration abounded on all sides. The danger to be feared from his intrigues lay in the state of Italy, which made a revolt against society and the established government only too likely if once a leader presented himself, and it was such a revolt that Catiline endeavoured to organize. Bankrupt nobles like himself, Sullan veterans and the starving peasants whom they had dispossessed of their holdings, outlaws of every description, the slave population of Rome, and the wilder herdsmen-slaves of the Apulian pastures, were all enlisted under his banner, and attempts were even made to excite disaffection among the newly conquered people of southern Gaul and the warlike tribes who still cherished the memory of Sertorius in Spain. In Etruria, the seat and centre of agrarian distress and discontent, a rising actually took place headed by a Sullan centurion, but the spread of the revolt was checked by Cicero's vigorous measures. Catiline fled from Rome, and died fighting with desperate courage at the head of his motley force of old soldiers, peasants and slaves. His accomplices in Rome were arrested, and, after an unavailing protest from Caesar, the senate authorized the consuls summarily to put them to death.

The Catilinarian outbreak had been a blow to Caesar, whose schemes it interrupted, but to Cicero it brought not only popularity and honour, but, as he believed, the realization of his political ideal. But Pompey was now on his way home, l2 and again as in 70 the political future seemed to depend Ketura of on the attitude which the successful general would Pompey assume; Pompey himself looked simply to the attain- tram ment by the help of one political party or another of A * la ~ his immediate aims, which at present were the ratification of his arrangements in Asia and a grant of land for his troops. It was the impracticable jealousy of his personal rivals in the senate, aided by the versatility of Caesar, who presented himself not as his rival but as his ally, which drove Pompey once more, in spite of Cicero's efforts, into the camp of what was still nominally the popular party. In 60, c atl - on Caesar's return from his propraetorship in Spain, the Pbmpey, coalition was formed which is known by the somewhat Caesar misleading title of the First Triumvirate. 11 Pompey aad was ostensibly the head of this new alliance, and in 6o69j' return for the satisfaction of his own demands he undertook to support Caesar's candidature for the consulship. The wealth and influence of Crassus were enlisted in the same cause, and the publicani were secured by a promise of release from their bargain for collecting the taxes of Asia. Cicero was under no illusions as to the significance of this coalition. It scattered to the winds his dreams of a stable and conservative republic. The year 59 saw the republic powerless in the hands of three citizens. Caesar as consul procured the ratification of Pompey's acts in Asia, granted to the publicani the relief refused by the senate, and carried an agrarian law of the new type, which provided for the purchase of lands for allotment at the cost of the treasury and for the assignment of the rich ager Campanus. 1 ' But Caesar aimed at more than the carrying of laws in the teeth of the senate or any party victory in the forum. An important military command Caesar** was essential to him. An obedient tribune, P. Vatinius, command was found, and by the lex Vatinia he was given for to a "" 1 ' five years the command of Cisalpine Gaul and Illyricum, to which 11 For the history of the next eighteen years, the most important ancient authority is Cicero in his letters and speeches.

13 Misleading, because the coalition was unofficial. The "triumvirs" of 43 were actual magistrates, " Illviri reipublicae constituendae causa."

14 For the lex Julia Agraria and the lex Campana, see Dio Cass. xxxviii. i; App. B.C. ii. 10; Suet. Jul. 20; Cic. Ad Att. ii. 16, 18.

was added by a decree of the senate Transalpine Gaul also. 1 This command not only opened to him a great military career, but enabled him, as the master of the valley of the Po, to keep an effective watch on the course of affairs in Italy.

Early the next year the attack upon himself which Cicero had foreseen was made. P. Clodius (q.v.) as tribune brought Baaish- forward a law enacting that any one who had put a went and Roman citizen to death without trial by the people 2 0/ should be interdicted from fire and water. Cicero, ss'sr- finding himself deserted even by Pompey, left Rome in 696-97. a panic, and by a second Clodian law he was declared to be outlawed. 2 With Caesar away in his province, and Cicero banished, Clodius was for the time master in Rome. But, absolute as he was in the streets, and recklessly as he parodied the policy of the Gracchi by violent attacks on the senate, his tribunate merely illustrated the anarchy which now inevitably followed the withdrawal of a strong controlling hand. A reaction speedily followed. Pompey, bewildered and alarmed by Clodius's violence, at last bestirred himself. Cicero's recall was decreed by the senate, and early in August 57 in the comitia cenluriata, to which his Italian supporters flocked in crowds, a law was passed revoking the sentence of outlawry passed upon him.

Intoxicated by the acclamations which greeted him, and encouraged by Potnpey's support, and by the salutary effects Renewal ^ Clodius's excesses, Cicero's hopes rose high. 3 With of the indefatigable energy he strove to reconstruct a solid coalition, constitutional party, but only to fail once more. 65-698. Pompey was irritated by the hostility of a powerful section in the senate, who thwarted his desires for a fresh command and even encouraged Clodius in insulting the conqueror of the East. Caesar became alarmed at the reports which reached him that the repeal of his agrarian law was threatened and that the feeling against the coalition was growing in strength; above all, he was anxious for a renewal of his five years' command. He acted at once, and in the celebrated conference at Luca (56) the alliance of the three selfconstituted rulers of Rome was renewed. Cicero succumbed to the inevitable and withdrew in despair from public life. Pompey and Crassus became consuls for 55. Caesar's command was renewed for another five years, and to each of his two allies important provinces were assigned for a similar period Pompey receiving the two Spainsand Africa, and Crassus Syria. 4 The coalition now divided between them the control of the empire. For the future. the question was, how long the coalition itself would last. Its duration proved to be short. In 53 Crassus was defeated and slain by the Crassus Parthians at Carrhae, and in Rome the course of 53=701. events slowly forced Pompey into an attitude of hostility to Caesar. The year 54 brought with it a renewal of the riotous anarchy which had disgraced Rome in 58-57. Conscious of its own helplessness, the senate, with the eager assent of all respectable citizens, dissuaded Pompey from leaving Italy; and he accordingly left his provinces to be governed by his legates. But the anarchy and confusion only grew worse, and even strict constitutionalists like Cicero talked of the necessity of investing Pompey with some extraordinary powers for the preservation of order. 5 At last 'Suet. Jttl. 22; Dio Cass. xxxviii. 8; App. B.C. ii. 13; Plut. Caes. 14.

2 Both laws were carried in the concilium plebis. The first merely reaffirmed the right of appeal, as the law of Gaius Gracchus had done. The second declared Cicero to be already by his own act in leaving Rome " interdicted from fire and water " a procedure for which precedents could be quoted. Clodius kept within the letter of the law.

Cicero's speech Pro Sestio gives expression to these feelings; it contains a passionate appeal to all good citizens to rally round the old constitution. The acquittal of Sestius confirmed his hopes. See Ad Q. Fr. ii. 4.

4 Livy, Epit. cv. ; Dio Cass. xxxix. 33. For Cicero's views, see Ep. ad Fam. \. 9; Ad Alt. iv. 5.

6 A dictatorship was talked of in Rome; Plut. Pomp. 54; Cic. Ad Q. Fr. iii. 8. Cicero himself anticipated Augustus in his picture of a princeps civitatis sketched in a lost book of the De republica, 698.

700.

705. 706.

in 52 he was elected sole consul, and not only so, but his provincial command was prolonged for five years pom more, and fresh troops were assigned him. 6 The r61e , / e fey of " saviour of society " thus thrust upon Pompey was coatui, one which flattered his vanity, but it entailed conse- S2-702. quences which it is probable he did not foresee, for it brought him into close alliance with the senate, and in the senate there was a powerful party who were resolved to force him into heading the attack they could not successfully make without him upon Caesar. It was known that the latter, whose command expired in March 49, but who in the ordinary course of things would not have been replaced by his successor until January 48, was anxious to be aljpwed to stand for his second consulship in the autumn of 49 without coming in person to Rome. 7 His opponents in the senate proposed were equally bent on bringing his command to an end recall of at the legal time, and so obliging him to disband his C****r. troops and stand for the consulship as a private person, or, if he kept his command, on preventing his standing for the consulship. Through 51 and 50 the discussions in the senate and the negotiations with Caesar continued, but with no result. On 1st January 49 Caesar made a last offer of compromise. The senate replied by requiring him on pain of outlawry to disband his legions. Two tribunes who supported him were ejected from the senate-house, and the magistrates with Pompey were authorized to take measures to protect the republic. Caesar hesitated no longer; he crossed the Rubicon and invaded Italy. The Caefar rapidity of his advance astounded and bewildered crosses his foes. Pompey, followed by the consuls, by the the majority of the senate and a long train of nobles, K " bl ^"' abandoned Italy as untenable, and crossed into Greece. 8 At the end of March Caesar entered Rome as the master of Italy. Four years later, after the final victory of Munda (45), he became the undisputed master of the Roman world. 9 The task which Caesar had to perform was no easy one. It came upon him suddenly; for there is no sufficient reason to believe that Caesar had long premeditated revolu- Dlctator . tion, or that he had previously aspired to anything t hipof more than such a position as that which Pompey had Caesar, already won, a position unrepublican indeed, but accepted by republicans as inevitable. 10 War was forced upon him as the alternative to political suicide, but success in war brought the responsibilities of nearly absolute power, and Caesar's genius must be held to have shown itself in the masterly fashion in which he grasped the situation, rather than in the supposed sagacity with which he is said to have foreseen and prepared for it. In so far as he failed, his failure was mainly due to the fact that his tenure of power was too short for the work which he was required to perform. From the very first moment when Pompey 's ignominious retreat left him master of Italy, he made it clear that he was neither a second Sulla nor even the reckless anarchist which many believed him to be. 11 The Roman and Italian public were written about this time, which was based upon his hopes of what Pompey might prove to be; Ad Att. viii. ii ; August. Deciv. Dei, v. 13.

\ Plut. Pomp. 54; App. B.C. ii. 24.

7 For the rights of the question involved in the controversy between Caesar and the senate, see Mommsen, Rechtsfrage zw. Caesar und d. Senat; Guiraud, Le Difftrend entre Cesar et le Senat (Paris, 1878), and the article CAESAR.

8 Cicero severely censures Pompey for abandoning Italy, but strategically the move was justified by the fact that Pompey's strength lay in the East, where his name was a power, and in his control of the sea. Politically, however, it was a blunder, as it enabled Caesar to pose as the defender of Italy.

9 For the Civil Wars, see CAESAR; CICERO; and POMPEY.

10 On this, as on many other points connected with Caesar, divergence has here been ventured on from the views expressed by Mommsen in his brilliant chapter on Caesar (Hist, of Rome, bk. v. cap. xi.). _Too much stress must not be laid on the gossip retailed by Suetonius as to Caesar's early intentions.

__ 11 Cicero vividly expresses the revulsion of feeling produced by Caesar's energy, humanity and moderation on his first appearance in Italy. Compare Ad Att. vii. n, with Ad Att. viii. 13.

first startled by the masterly rapidity and energy of his movements, and then agreeably surprised by his lenity and moderation. No proscriptions or confiscations followed his victories, and all his acts evinced an unmistakable desire to effect a sober and reasonable settlement of the pressing questions of the hour; of this, and of his almost superhuman energy, the long list of measures he carried out or planned is sufficient proof. The " children of the proscribed " were at length restored to their rights, 1 and with them many of the refugees 2 who had found shelter in Caesar's camp during the two or three years immediately preceding the war; but the extreme men among his supporters soon realized that their hopes of novae tabulae and grants of land were illusory. In allotting lands to his veterans, Caesar carefully avoided any disturbance of existing owners and occupiers, 3 and the mode in which he dealt with the economic crisis produced by the war seems to have satisfied all reasonable men. 4 It had been a common charge against Caesar in former days that he paid excessive court to the populace of Rome, and now that he was master he still dazzled and delighted them by the splendour of the spectacles he provided, and by the liberality of his largesses. But he was no indiscriminate flatterer of the mob. The popular clubs and gilds which had helped to organize the anarchy of the last few years were dissolved. 6 A strict inquiry was made into the distribution of the monthly doles of corn, and the number of recipients was reduced by one-half; 6 finally, the position of the courts of justice was raised by the abolition of the popular element among the judices. 7 Nor did Caesar shrink from the attempt, in which so many had failed before him, to mitigate the twin evils which were ruining the prosperity of Italy the concentration of a pauper population in the towns, and the denudation and desolation of the country districts. His strong hand carried out the scheme so often proposed by the popular leaders since the days of Gaius Gracchus, the colonization of Carthage and Corinth. Allotments of land on a large scale were made in Italy; decaying towns were reinforced by fresh drafts of settlers; on the large estates and cattle farms the owners were required to find employment for a certain amount of free labour; and a slight and temporary stimulus was given to Italian industry by the reimposition of harbour dues upon foreign goods. 8 The reform of the calendar, which is described elsewhere, 9 completes a record of administrative reform which entitles Caesar to the praise of having governed well, whatever may be thought of the validity of his title to govern at all. But how did Caesar deal with what was after all the greatest problem which he was called upon to solve, the establishment of a satisfactory government for the Empire? One point indeed was already settled. Some centralization of the executive authority was indispensable, and this part of his work Caesar thoroughly performed. From the moment when he seized the moneys in the treasury on his first entry into Rome 10 down to the day of his death, he recognized on other authority but his throughout the Empire. He alone directed the policy of Rome in foreign affairs; the legions were led, and the provinces governed, not by independent magistrates, but by his "legates"; 11 and the title Imperator which he adopted was intended to express the absolute and unlimited nature of the imperium he claimed, as distinct from the limited spheres of authority possessed by republican magistrates. 12 In so centralizing the executive authority over the Empire at large, Caesar was but 1 Dio xli. 1 8. 2 App. ii. 48; Dio xli. 36.

3 Plut. Caes. 51; Suet. 38, " adsignavit agrps, sed non continues, ne quis possessorum expelleretur." Cf. App. ii. 94.

4 For the lex Julia de pecuniis mutuis, see Suet. Jul. 42 ; Caesar, B.C. iii. i; Dio xh. 37; App. ii. 48. The faeneratores were satisfied; Cic. Ad Fam. viii. 17. But the law displeased anarchists like M. Caelius Rufus and P. Cornelius Dplabella.

6 Suet. Jul. 42. Ibid. 41 ; Dio xliii. 21.

7 Suet. Jul. 41 ; Dio xliii. 25. * Suet. Jul. 42, 43.

9 See CALENDAR ; Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, v. 438, and Fischer, Rom. ZeiUafeln, 292 seq.

10 Plut. Caes. 35. " Dio xliii. 47.

12 Dio xliii. 44. For this use of the title Imperator, see Mommsen, Hist of Rome. v. 332, and note.

developing the policy implied in the Gabinian and Manilian laws, and the precedent he established was closely followed by his successors. It was otherwise with the more difficult question of the form under which this new executive authority should be exercised and the relation it should hold to the republican constitution. We must be content to remain in ignorance of the precise shape which Caesar intended ultimately to give to the new system. The theory that he contemplated a revival of the old Roman kingship 13 is supported by little more than the popular gossip of the day, and the form under which he actually wielded his authority can hardly have been regarded by so sagacious a statesman as more than a provisional arrangement. This form was that of the dictatorship; and in favour of the choice it might have been urged that the dictatorship was the office naturally marked out by republican tradition as the one best suited to carry the state safely through a serious crisis, that the powers it conveyed were wide, that it was as dictator that Sulla had reorganized the state, and that a dictatorship had been spoken of as the readiest means of legalizing Pompey's protectorate of the Republic in 53- nl _ 2 52. The choice nevertheless was a bad one. It was associated with those very Sullan traditions from which Caesar was most anxious to sever himself; it implied necessarily the suspension for the time of all constitutional government; and, lastly, the dictatorship as held by Caesar could not even plead that it conformed to the old rules and traditions of the office. The " perpetual dictatorship " granted him after his crowning victory at Munda (45) was a contradiction in terms rg9f and a repudiation of constitutional government which excited the bitterest animosity. 14 A second question, hardly less important, was that of the position to be assigned to the old constitution. So far as Caesar himself was concerned, the answer was for the time sufficiently clear. The old constitution was not formally abrogated. The senate met and deliberated; the assembly passed laws and elected magistrates; there were still consuls, praetors, aediles, quaestors and tribunes; and Caesar himself, like his successors, professed to hold his authority by the will of the people. But senate, assembly and magistrates were all alike subordinated to the paramount authority of the dictator; and this subordination was, in appearance at least, more direct and complete under the rule of Caesar than under that of Augustus. Caesar was by nature as impatient as Augustus was tolerant of established forms; and, dazzled by the splendour of his career of victory and by his ubiquitous energy and versatility, the Roman public, high and low, prostrated themselves before him and heaped honours upon him with a reckless profusion which made the existence of any authority by the side of his own an absurdity. 16 Hence under Caesar the old constitution was repeatedly disregarded, or suspended in a way which contrasted unfavourably with the more respectful attitude assumed by Augustus. For months together Rome was left without any regular magistrates, and was governed like a subject town by Caesar's prefects. 18 At another time a tribune was seen exercising authority outside the city bounds and invested with the imperium of a praetor. 17 At the elections, candidates appeared before the people backed by a written recommendation from the dictator, which was equivalent to a command. 18 Finally, the senate itself was 18 See Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, v. 333, and Ranke, Weltgcschichte, ii. 319 seq. According to Appian ii. no, and Plutarch, Caes. 64, the title rex was only to be used abroad in the East, as likely to strengthen Caesar's position against the Parthians.

14 Cicero, Phil. i. 2, 4, praises Antony, " quuin dictatoris nomen . . . propter perpetuae dictaturae recentem memoriam funditus ex republica sustulisset."

16 For the long list of these, see Appian ii. 106; Dio xliii. 43-45: Plut. Caes. 57 ; Suet. Jul. 76. Cf. also Mommsen, Hist, of Rome, v. 329 ff. ; Watson, Cicero's Letters, App. x. ; Zumpt, Sludia Romana, 199 seq. (Berlin, 1859).

19 Zumpt, Stud. Rom. 241 ; Suet. Jul. 76.

17 Cic. Ad Alt. x. 8a.

18 Suet. Jul. 41, "Caesar dictator ... commendo vobis ilium et ilium, ut vestro suffragio suam dignitatem teneant."

1zz 73.

transformed out of all likeness to its former self by the raising of its numbers to 900, and by the admission of old soldiers, sons of freedmen and even " semi-barbarous Gauls." * But, though Caesar's high-handed conduct in this respect was not imitated by his immediate successors, yet the main lines of their policy were laid down by him. These were (i) the municipalization of the old republican constitution, and (2) its subordination to the paramount authority of the master of the legions and the provinces. In the first case he only carried further a change already in progress. Of late years the senate had been rapidly losing its hold over the Empire at large. Even the ordinary proconsuls were virtually independent potentates, ruling their provinces as they chose, and disposing absolutely of legions which recognized no authority but theirs. The consuls and praetors of each year had since 81 been stationed in Rome, and immersed in purely municipal business; and, lastly, since the enfranchisement of Italy, the comitia, though still recognized as the ultimate source of all authority, had become little more than assemblies of the city populace, and their claim to represent the true Roman people was indignantly questioned, even by republicans like Cicero. The concentration in Caesar's hands of all authority outside Rome completely and finally severed all real connexion between the old institutions of the Republic of Rome and the government of the Roman Empire. But the institutions of the Republic not merely became, what they had originally been, the local institutions of the city of Rome; they were also subordinated even within these narrow limits to the paramount authority of the man who held in his hands the army and the provinces. Autocratic abroad, at home he was the chief magistrate of the commonwealth; and this position was marked, in his case as in that of those who followed him, by a combination in his person of various powers, and by a general right of precedence which left no limits to his authority but such as he chose to impose upon himself. During the greater part of his reign he was consul as well as dictator. In 48, after his victory at Pharsalia, he was given the tribunicia. potestas for life, 2 and after his second success at Thapsus the praefectura morum for three years. 3 As chief magistrate he convenes and presides in the senate, nominates candidates, conducts elections, carries laws in the assembly and administers justice in court. 4 Finally, as a reminder that the chief magistrate of Rome was also the autocratic ruler of the Empire, he wore even in Rome the laurel wreath and triumphal dress, and carried the sceptre of the victorious imperator. 6 Nor are we without some clue as to the policy which Caesar had sketched out for himself in the administration of the Empire, the government of which he had centralized in his own hands. The much-needed work of rectifying the frontiers 6 he was forced, by his premature death, to leave to other hands, but within the frontiers he anticipated Augustus in lightening the financial burdens of the provincials, 7 and in establishing a stricter control over the provincial governors, 8 while he went beyond him in his desire to consolidate the Empire by extending the Roman franchise 9 and admitting provincials to a share in the government. 10 He completed the Romanization of Italy by his enfranchisement of the Transpadane Gauls," and by establishing throughout the peninsula a uniform system of municipal government, which under his successors was gradually extended to the provinces. 12 1 Suet. Jul. 41, 76; Dio xliii. 47. * Dio xlii. 20.

* Dio xliii. 14; Suet. Jul. 76. The statement is rejected by Mommsen; see CAESAR.

4 Suet. Jul. 43, " jus laboriosissime ac severissime dixit."

6 App. ii. 1 06; Dio xliii. 43.

6 Plut. Goes. 58, "awiol/a.i T&V K.<IK\OV TTJS f/yfiMrlat " ; Suet. Jul. 44; Dio xliii. 51.

' Plut. Goes. 48 ; App. v. 4.

8 He limited the term of command to two years in consular and one year in praetorian provinces; Cicero, Phil. i. 8, 19; Dio xliii. 25.

' Suet. Jul. 42; Cic. Ad. Alt. xiv. 12. 10 Suet. Jul. 76. " Dio xli. 36; Tac. Ann. xi. 24.

"Lex Julia municipalis; see CAESAR.

On the eve of his departure for the East, to avenge the death of Crassus and humble the power of Parthia, Attempted Caesar fell a victim to the wounded pride of the re- re* torapublican nobles; and between the day of his death tloa '' he (March 15, 44) and that on which Octavian defeated "f^j ' Antony at Actium (September 2, 31) lies a dreary 710-n. period of anarchy and bloodshed." Tl - For a moment, in spite of the menacing attitude of 723.

Caesar's self-constituted representative Marcus Antonius (Mark Antony), it seemed to one man at least as if the restoration of republican government was possible. With indefatigable energy Cicero strove to enlist the senate, the people, and above all the provincial governors in support of the old constitution. But, though his eloquence now and again carried all before it in senate-house and forum, it was powerless to alter the course of events. By the beginning of 43 civil war had recommenced; in the autumn Antony was already threatening an invasion of Italy at the head of seventeen legions. Towards the end of October Antony and his ally M. Aemilius Lepidus coalesced with the young Octavian, who had been recently elected consul at the age of twenty, in spite of senatorial opposition; and the coalition was legalized The by the creation of the extraordinary cemmission for the second " reorganization of the commonwealth" known as the tiium" Second Triumvirate." 14 It was appointed for a period of five years, and was continued in 37 for five years more. 15 The rule of the triumvirs was inaugurated in the Sullan fashion by a proscription, foremost among the victims of which was Cicero himself. 18 In the next year the defeat of M. Junius Brutus and C. Cassius Longinus at Philippi, by the combined forces of Octavian and Antony, destroyed the last hopes of the republican party. 17 In 40 a threatened rupture between the two victors was avoided by the treaty concluded at Brundusium. Antony married Octavian's sister Octavia, and took command of the eastern half of the empire; Octavian appropriated Italy and the West; while Lepidus was forced to content himself with Africa. 18 For the next twelve years, while Antony was indulging in dreams of founding for himself and Cleopatra an empire in the East, and shocking Roman feeling by his wild excesses and his affectation of oriental magnificence, 19 Octavian was patiently consolidating his power. Lepidus his fellow-triumvir was in 36 ejected from Africa and banished to Circeii, while Sextus Pompeius, who had since his defeat at Munda maintained a semi-piratical ascendancy in the western Mediterranean, was decisively defeated in the same year, and his death in 35 left Octavian sole master of the West. The Tlg inevitable trial of strength between himself and Antony was not long delayed. In 32 Antony openly challenged the hostility of Octavian by divorcing Octavia in favour of the beautiful and daring Egyptian princess, with whom, as the heiress of the Ptolemies, he aspired to share the empire of the Eastern world. By a decree of the senate Antony was declared deposed from his command, and war was declared against Queen Cleopatra. 20 On the 2nd of September 31 was fought the battle of Actium. 21 Octavian's victory 723 ' was complete. Antony and Cleopatra committed 724.

suicide (30), and the Eastern provinces submitted in 725.

20. Octavian returned to Rome to celebrate his triumph and mark the end of the long-continued anarchy 13 For this period see Merivale, Romans under the Empire, vol. iii. ; Lange, Rom. Alterth. iii. 506 seq.; Gardthausen, Augustus, bk. i.

14 The triumvirate was formally constituted in Rome (Nov. 27th) by a plebiscitum; App. iv. 7; Dio xlvi, 56, xlvii. 2; Livy, Epit. cxx., " ut Illviri reipublicae constituendae per quinquennium essent."

16 Dio xlviii. 54; App. y. 95. For the date, cf. Mommsen, Staatsr. ii. 718. 16 Livy> Epit. cxx. ; App. iv. 7; and article CICERO.

17 Dio xlvii. 35-49; App. iv. 87-138.

18 Veil. ii. 76; Dio xlviii, 28; App. v. 65.

19 For Antony's policy and schemes in the East, see Ranke, Weltgeschichte, ii. 381-85; Mommsen, Provinces of the Roman Empire, ii. p. 24 sqq.; Lange, Rom. Alterth. iii. 573 sqq.

'"Suet. Aug. 17; Dio 1. 1-8; Plutarch, Anton. 53. 21 Dio Ii. I ; Zonaras x. 30.

by closing the temple of Janus; 1 at the end of the next year he formally laid down the extraordinary powers which he had held since 43, and a regular government was established.

Til.

III. The Empire.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

Privacy Policy | Cookie Policy | GDPR