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The narrative of Roman history has been largely shaped by the surviving literary sources, augmented in places by material culture. The numerous surviving coins can, however, provide new information on the distant past. This accessible but authoritative guide introduces the student of ancient history to the various ways in which they can help us understand the history of the Roman republic, with fresh insights on early Roman-Italian relations, Roman imperialism, urban politics, constitutional history, the rise of powerful generals and much more. The text is accompanied by over 200 illustrations of coins, with detailed captions, as well as maps and diagrams so that it also functions as a sourcebook of the key coins every student of the period should know. Throughout, it demystifies the more technical aspects of the field of numismatics and ends with a how-to guide for further research for non-specialists.
Cicero's speeches provide a fascinating window into the political battles and crises of his time. In this book, Joanna Kenty examines Cicero's persuasive strategies and the subtleties of his Latin prose, and shows how he used eight political personae – the attacker, the grateful friend, the martyr, the senator, the partisan ideologue, and others – to maximize his political leverage in the latter half of his career. These personae were what made his arguments convincing, and drew audiences into Cicero's perspective. Non-specialist and expert readers alike will gain new insight into Cicero's corpus and career as a whole, as well as a better appreciation of the context, details, and nuances of individual passages.
This chapter investigates the significance that Roman augural practice, as a kindred practice to Greek theôria, held for Roman comedy and tragedy. Central to its arguments are notions of time and space, which ultimately show the broad importance of Aristotelian concepts to the broader Hellenistic world. This piece argues that augury-taking involved sitting in a terrestrial temple while gazing at a specially demarcated zone of sky or a ‘whole-world’ (mundus). This temporarily legible space in which the gods would direct the signifying flight of birds was more than a celestial backdrop; it was also itself a temple (templum caeli), and the technical term for this temple-gazing was contemplatio. The institution of Roman theatre has not generally been associated with practices of auspication, but because of the emphatic insistence on the temporary stage, the conventional ‘unity of time’ and the probable placement of audience seating, there was a suggestive similarity between the Middle Republican audience’s spectation at tragedies and comedies and traditional augural contemplation. The structural echo between augural and theatrical contemplation outlives the Republican temporary stage in Seneca, where it has become a distinctively Roman mode of construing the intersection of the cosmic gaze and philosophical or spectatorial theôria.
The provincial coinage of the Roman Empire has proven to be a rich source for studying civic experiences of Roman rule, but the coins struck outside Rome during the expansion of the Roman Republic have, by contrast, received relatively little attention. This article aims to begin redressing this neglect by exploring the active rôle of coinage in conceptualizing and representing Roman Republican power. A variety of approaches to this neglected material are employed in order to highlight its potential as a source. Ambiguity, iconology, and entanglement are used as frameworks to explore case studies from across the Roman Republican world, from Spain to Syria. This approach to coin imagery under the Republic reveals the complexity and variety in which the Roman presence, and Roman imperium, was represented before the advent of the Principate.
The name Mediterranean is derived from Latin and means 'in the middle of the earth', a reference to the fact either that it is almost entirely surrounded by land or that it was deemed to be at the center of the known world by ancient West Afro-Eurasian societies. The fall of the Western Roman Empire shapes the way in which Western history is periodized, as it marks the end of the classical era. The cultural influence of the Assyrians and Egyptians, particularly the Hebrews, Phoenicians, Minoans, and Mycenaeans, who occupied the coasts and islands of the Eastern Mediterranean, was substantial. Within both large political structures, such as the Hellenistic and Roman empires, and smaller cultures and states that did not evolve into large-scale empires, such as those of the Hebrews, Phoenicians, Minoans, and Mycenaeans, expansion invariably led to the emergence of more complex social structures, which explicitly situated various groups, including women and slaves, into more sharply delineated hierarchical structures.
This article discusses the probable aims and provisions of Mark Antony's judiciary law of September 44 B.C. and challenges the prevailing view that this law had no further existence after it was annulled by the Senate in January 43 B.C. Instead, it is demonstrated that Antony's law was almost certainly reinstated under the Triumvirs and thus radically altered the composition of juries in Rome's criminal courts. This realization makes it possible to reconstruct the likely nature and timing of Augustus' judicial reforms, which can now be regarded as measures designed to reverse major changes that had been introduced by Antony's legislation.
Religion in Rome in the republican period was integrated into the political and social structure, in such a way that every group or activity had its religious aspect. The first characteristic of Roman gods and goddesses to strike the observer must be the wide range of different types, all accepted and worshipped as di deaeque. In many ways the categories and vocabulary to be met with in the religion of Rome seem comfortably similar to those familiar from religions current today: prayer, sacrifice, vows, sacred books, even divination. The event which radically changed the nature of the city's religious and political life was the overthrow of the monarchy in the late sixth century. There was a continuing tradition of change and innovation during the period of the early to middle Republic. There were many changes and innovations: new temples and cults, new or revised ceremonies, changes of procedure or of the rules of membership in the priestly colleges.
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