Legend has it that Romulus built Rome on the Palentine Hill – one of the Seven Hills of Rome Romulus Remus Rome's Elite Fortresses & Government
People settled on seven hills along the Tiber River between 1000-900 BCE – Called Latins or Italics Many geographical advantages: – Easy to defend – Fertile soil – Access to rivers allows for trade in the Mediterranean Sea – Other more powerful societies controlled the rest of the Italian peninsula Example: Greeks and Etruscans
Can be broken into three “eras” –F–For over 200 years, Rome was a Kingdom –F–For about 500 years, Rome was a Republic –F–For about 500 years, Rome was an Empire
Early kings of Rome – Not much is known as their written works did not survive – Who were they? Most developed Latin/Italic people Located in northern, central Italy Most likely descendants of modern-day Turkey and native Italian population By 6 th century BCE they were the most powerful city state (modeled after the Greek system)
Romans resented the all-powerful Etruscan kings who gave them no say in their government 509 BCE the Romans revolted against Lucius Tarquinius Superbus Result: End of the Etruscan kings
Romans keep many Etruscan ideas: – Hierarchy of Gods (Greek in origin) – Alphabet (also Greek in origin) – Toga – I told you they “borrowed” freely from other cultures! Toga! Toga!
Just a smidgen of Phoenician A spoonful of Persian A dollop of Egyptian A heaping portion of Greek Yum, Etruscan! Goin’ back for Greek seconds!
Romans never wanted a king again or any government with a single ruler – Establish a Republic…what is it? “Republic” literally comes from a Roman term Res Publica, or “the public concern” or “public affairs” – This essentially translates to sharing all power
By 264 BCE the Romans controlled the entire Italian peninsula The Republican Government consisted of… 1. The Consuls – Two chief officials who led the government Appointed to perform the duties that, prior to them, the king was responsible for, like military authority and ensuring civic welfare and acting as chief diplomat and religious authority. – Elected once a year; Each had equal power; could veto the other
By 264 BCE the Romans controlled the entire Italian peninsula The Republican Government consisted of… 2. The Senate – Originally advisors to the king – Chosen by consuls – 300 upper-class patricians – Members for life – Most powerful part of the government – Deliberated on and voted on laws (consuls proposed) – The model for the US government
What were the pros of this system compared to monarchy? What possible problems could this lead to?
Dictator – Roman official who had all the power of a king, but could only hold office for 6 months Used only in dire emergencies Praetors – Junior consuls who helped develop first rules for Roman judicial system (courts)
Patricians – Members of wealthy families; only people eligible for the Senate Plebeians – everyone else in ancient Rome (except the patricians) from well-to-do tradesmen all the way down to the very poor
Similarities : – Both pater familias – Both could own slaves – Citizens of Rome were adult freemen from both classes - plebs and patricians. Women, children, and slaves were not citizens Differences: – Did not mix socially – Illegal for plebs and patricians to marry – Lifestyles were very different Patricians very wealthy and lived an opulent lifestyle, plebs did not
The Senate (power) was only open to patrician families Plebeians resented the Senate who: – Took riches from war – Created prosperous farms run by slaves – Left many plebian famers unemployed Reaction: Plebeians refuse to serve in the military in protest!
1.Twelve Tables – 450 BCE; a board of 10 men were entrusted to draw up a basic legal tradition and publish them on wood (later bronze) to be placed in the forum 1.Creation of the Assembly – an elected body that had 10 Tribunes to discuss and decide issues on behalf of Plebeians 2.Plebs could marry into Patrician families 3.Eventually Senators could be Plebs (but very uncommon)
Table I. 1. If anyone summons a man before the magistrate, he must go. If the man summoned does not go, let the one summoning him call the bystanders to witness and then take him by force. 2. If he shirks or runs away, let the summoner lay hands on him. 6-9. When the litigants settle their case by compromise, let the magistrate announce it. If they do not compromise, let them state each his own side of the case, in the comitium of the forum before noon. Afterwards let them talk it out together, while both are present. After noon, in case either party has failed to appear, let the magistrate pronounce judgment in favor of the one who is present. If both are present the trial may last until sunset but no later.
Table II. 2. He whose witness has failed to appear may summon him by loud calls before his house every third day. Table III. 1. One who has confessed a debt, or against whom judgment has been pronounced, shall have thirty days to pay it in. After that forcible seizure of his person is allowed. The creditor shall bring him before the magistrate. Unless he pays the amount of the judgment or some one in the presence of the magistrate interferes in his behalf as protector the creditor so shall take him home and fasten him in stocks or fetters. He shall fasten him with not less than fifteen pounds of weight or, if he choose, with more. If the prisoner choose, he may furnish his own food. If he does not, the creditor must give him a pound of meal daily; if he choose he may give him more. 3. Against a foreigner the right in property shall be valid forever.
Table IV. 1. A dreadfully deformed child shall be quickly killed. 2. If a father sell his son three times, the son shall be free from his father. 5. A child born after ten months since the father's death will not be admitted into a legal inheritance. Table V. 1. Females should remain in guardianship even when they have attained their majority. Table VI. 1. When one makes a bond and a conveyance of property, as he has made formal declaration so let it be binding.
Table VII. 1. Let them keep the road in order. If they have not paved it, a man may drive his team where he likes. 9. Should a tree on a neighbor's farm be bent crooked by the wind and lean over your farm, you may take legal action for removal of that tree. 10. A man might gather up fruit that was falling down onto another man's farm. Table VIII. 2. If one has maimed a limb and does not compromise with the injured person, let there be retaliation. If one has broken a bone of a freeman with his hand or with a cudgel, let him pay a penalty of three hundred coins. If he has broken the bone of a slave, let him have one hundred and fifty coins. If one is guilty of insult, the penalty shall be twenty-five coins.
3. If one is slain while committing theft by night, he is rightly slain. 4. If a patron shall have devised any deceit against his client, let him be accursed. 10. Any person who destroys by burning any building or heap of corn deposited alongside a house shall be bound, scourged, and put to death by burning at the stake provided that he has committed the said misdeed with malice aforethought; but if he shall have committed it by accident, that is, by negligence, it is ordained that he repair the damage or, if he be too poor to be competent for such punishment, he shall receive a lighter punishment. 23. A person who had been found guilty of giving false witness shall be hurled down from the Tarpeian Rock. 26. No person shall hold meetings by night in the city.
Table IX. 4. The penalty shall be capital for a judge or arbiter legally appointed who has been found guilty of receiving a bribe for giving a decision. 5. Treason: he who shall have roused up a public enemy or handed over a citizen to a public enemy must suffer capital punishment. 6. Putting to death of any man, whosoever he might be unconvicted is forbidden. Table X. 1. None is to bury or burn a corpse in the city. 3. The women shall not tear their faces nor wail on account of the funeral. Table XI. 1. Marriages should not take place between plebeians and patricians. Table XII. 5. Whatever the people had last ordained should be held as binding by law.
Eventually the Assembly was given the power to elect the two consuls every year… – So…what would be the impact?!?
Consuls – executive branch Praetors – looked after legal cases Censors – guided public morals Curulian Aediles – supervised markets, festivals and temples Quaestors – public finance Tribunes –represented the rights of the people (2-10) Appoints Dictator in times of extreme need (6 months) SenateAssembly Appointed by Consul Advises Consuls Elected by Assembly
Roman army had 30 Legions – Each Legion had about 5,500 men Each Legion was divided into 10 units called Cohorts – The First Cohort consisted of approximately 800 men Had “specialists” such as blacksmiths or engineers – The other 9 Cohorts consisted of approximately 480 men Each Cohort was divided into 6 Centuries of about 80 men – Each Century was commanded by a Centurion – The First Cohort only had 5 centuries