By Nathan Rosenstein, Robert Morstein-Marx
This Companion offers an authoritative and up to date assessment of Roman Republican heritage because it is presently practiced.
- Highlights fresh advancements, together with archaeological discoveries, clean techniques to textual assets, and the hole up of latest parts of ancient study
- Retains the drama of the Republic’s upward push and fall
- Emphasizes not only the proof of texts and actual is still, but additionally the versions and assumptions that students convey to those artefacts
- Looks on the position performed by means of the actual geography and atmosphere of Italy
- Offers a compact yet special narrative of army and political advancements from the start of the Roman Republic via to the demise of Julius Caesar
- Discusses present controversies within the field
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Additional resources for A companion to the Roman Republic
52 This means, however, that one cannot count at all on the use of a precisely fixed terminology in our sources, particularly since social groups always have blurred boundaries. 2006 6:29pm 13 system. 57 But the view that political decisions both in the popular assemblies and in the Senate would have been largely determined by patronage relations should now be abandoned at last. This would clear the horizon for studying the remarkable intensity and multifarious forms of communication between upper and lower classes in Rome.
Ultimately it is not of great importance whether one describes the nobility, the most esteemed families of the senatorial political class, as an aristocracy. Millar’s objection that it was not a hereditary aristocracy is not especially consequential,74 since on the one hand this is evident and undisputed, but on the other, the conception of aristocracy as a prominent and privileged group is not in fact tied to formal heritability. But above all the element of achievement, which is often seen as a central distinction between the modern meritocracy and the class-based concept of aristocracy, is of course not in itself a decisive criterion, since at the root of every aristocracy lies a claim to achievement, as the name ‘‘rule of the best’’ itself shows, except that one did not give evidence of one’s capacity for achievement as one does today – by such feeble means as grades on examinations at the top universities for aspiring leaders in the economic realm, or among scientists, by the size of their grants, and so on – but by one’s ancestry and the accomplishments of one’s ancestors.
97 It is therefore not absurd to suppose that in the popular assemblies the symbolic reinforcement of social solidarity may have been considerably more important than the specific content of the matter to be decided. Indeed a few years ago Henrik Mouritsen undertook a critical reevaluation of Millar’s basic assumptions about those who actually gathered in Roman assemblies and partly cut the ground out from under them. 98 Mouritsen, however, attempted to determine the actual level of participation, at least in broad outline.
A companion to the Roman Republic by Nathan Rosenstein, Robert Morstein-Marx