Historum - History Forums  

Go Back   Historum - History Forums > World History Forum > Ancient History
Register Forums Blogs Social Groups Mark Forums Read

Ancient History Ancient History Forum - Greece, Rome, Carthage, Egypt, Mesopotamia, and all other civilizations of antiquity, to include Prehistory and Archaeology discussions


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old November 7th, 2012, 09:52 AM   #51
Suspended indefinitely
 
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 19,934

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucius Vorenus View Post
To our beloved sylla whose posts are always refreshing in the morning:

I wish if he would answer: what is Republic, is that only period of democratization in II and I century, or whole period after the Kingdom in which great majority of people of Rome hadn't any access to the magistratures? It seems like he is taking far too arbitrarily the periods in which he can prove more democratic movements in Republic.

Some ancient sources relate that the philosopher Hermodorus of Ephesus, an exile in Italy,
assisted the decemvirs (Pompon. Dig. 1.2.2.4; Pliny HN 34.21; Strabo 14.1.25), and
the Tables contain the Greek loan-word poena (‘‘punishment’’). Even though the
publication of these laws is presented by our sources as a concession to the common
people, almost all of the decemviri were patrician. Therefore, the popular movement
gave patricians the opportunity to write laws favorable to their own interests.
(p. 238)(That is favorable to the interests of minority, not majority. NOTE. L.V.)


In the later Republic(to which our beloved sylla always refer to with Polybius and Cicero. note L.V), it was
believed that the early population had been divided into two castes, patricians and
plebeians; the populus consisted of both castes, but the plebs only of plebeians. The
great mass of the citizens were plebeians, while the political power lay with the
patricians who controlled the offices, priesthoods, and law.(p.259) NOTE. This quotation is exactly needed to make division between "Early" and "Later" Roman Republic. Early Republic was mainly ran by patricians that is by relatively small group of people unlike the later Republic where some of the most prominent members were from plebs, and even then patrician gentes had the right to inherit certain magistratures.(L.V)

(A Companion to the Roman Republic, Rosenstein, Morstein - Marx, Blackwell, 2006)

As far as comitias under the early Republic are concerned, I don't even remotely find it appropriate to explain well known facts about voting in which richest two classes had power over other 4 or 5 classes or majority of people. However, if our sylla has forgotten some things since he based his vievs of Republic only on the late period, I offer him this:

The comitia curiata under the Roman kings acted as the people's assembly. It was up of representatives of the three old tribes of the city of Rome (three old tribes: ramnes, tities, luceres). It is apparently based on these three old tribes that ten divisions of each tribe mere made to form a curia, which would then be represented in the comitia curiata. This although King Servius Tullius defined the four new urban tribes of Rome (four new tribes:sucusana, esquilina, collina, palatina) which meant that the tribes no longer were matters of birth, but merely where in the city you held residence. Despite such changes the division of Rome into thirty curiae remained.
As an assembly the comitia curiata didn't really possess any real political powers. Far more its role was to 'confirm' magistrates in their position, once they had already been confirmed by the senate. In essence they therefore held no real political power, but acted as a discussion forum from which the spokesmen of the ordinary people could make their voices heard. The comitia curiata though also could act as a court of appeal for death sentences, if the quaestors deemed it suitable to hand a case to them for review.
The minimum age for the spokesman for a curia was fifty years and he was elected for life.

The comitia centuriata had already under the kings been the council representing the military units (the 'centuries'). The comitia centuriata elected the higher magistrates (consuls, praetors, censors-although it was the senate which nominated the candidates), officially declared war and peace (although the actual decisions for this lay with the consuls). Also it was the highest court of appeal for executions or exile.
When considering the comitia centuriata one needs to keep in mind that its great influence was reflecting the fact that it was made up of the soldiery, which in republican times was almost entirely made up of the landowning classes.
Its influence decreased in the later republic, being eclipsed by the comitia tributa and the concilium plebis.

property class number of centuries total
equites - 18
Class 1 40 senorium and 40 iuniorum 80
Class 2 10 senorium and 10 iuniorum 20
Class 3 10 senorium and 10 iuniorum 20
Class 4 10 senorium and 10 iuniorum 20
Class 5 15 senorium and 15 iuniorum 30
proletarii - 1
special craftsmen, (fabri and cornicines) - 4
Total votes - 193

Note equites and class 1 command 98 votes, a majority! Proletarii have 1 vote.


If he doubts in any fact of my later quotation about comitias I want him to pay more attention, since obvious and well - known facts shouldn't be explained to the sharp historian like him.
Couldn't be any happier that you bring this superb historian here; Morstein-Marx has actually been (together with Fergus Millar) one of the main reviewers on the popular participation in the administraion of the Roman Republic.
Plainly, the Republic was exponentially more democratic that what was regularly suggested by overtly lavish pro-Imperial apologist historians of Imperial times.

We have already been myriad times either in Historum and elsewhere, so allow me save you some time.

First, as you could easily verify in your very excellent tertiary sources and elsewhere, the Patrician versus Plebeian conflicts (the struggle of the Orders) have already been paultinely disappearing by the time any more or less reliable historical Roman record begins; such disappearance was complete not later than the Lex Hortensia (CDLXVII AUC / 287 BC) long before the first attested Roman Annalists and of course loooooonnnggg before Polybios so magnificently described his contemporary Roman Constitution by first-hand account.

Ergo, aside of being almost all the information on the Struggle of the Orders semi- or plainly legendary (i.e. there's even nowadays no valid explanation for the high prevalence of indisputably Plebeian surnames even within the earliest Fasti consulares) not to mention your commentaries on the (semi?-) mythical Roman Monarchy, virtually any such commentary is irelvant, anachronic and obsolet regarding the Republican Roman Constitution described by Polybios and still perfectly democratically active at least up to the time of the Divine pseudo-Dictator Son of Venus.

That said, the really critical point here is that fundamentally all the non-anachronically obsolete observations of your long last post are intended to demonstrate some purported manipulation or the Roman popular vote by some not too clearly defined group.

Even if for the sake of your argument we may even remotely admit that if all such observations were strictly exact (needless to say, a really big if) the really relevant point is that they are all undeniable evidence that the Roman popular vote was always something worthy to be manipulated.
Easy as that.

Plainly, not even the more aristocratic Republican politician were ever able to ignore even the humblest popular vote.
(Again, at least before the military coup d'état of CJ Caesar Sr)

The popular vote, even from the poorest Roman citizens, was worthy being manipulated naturally & precisely because it democratically determined virtually all Roman magistracies all along the protracted Republican period.

Again, by far the longest continuous democratic regime all along History to this very date.
Easy as that.

Last edited by sylla1; November 7th, 2012 at 10:00 AM.
sylla1 is offline  
Remove Ads
Old November 7th, 2012, 10:07 AM   #52

Lucius Vorenus's Avatar
Boss(ma)niac.
 
Joined: Sep 2012
From: Dalmatia Interior
Posts: 2,695
Blog Entries: 1

You defend your theory about democracy of Roman Republic by negating things I never questioned. You might read my previous posts where I mentioned that Polybius writings are maybe the best state description we have from Rome. But what you clearly don't want to admit is that Republic at first centuries of its existance was ruled and ran mostly by patrician families needless to say by minority. I gave you generally accepted, reliable theory of comitias which should in theory(but didn't for very long time) represent masses in power, and you still are building your argument on unfounded thesis about semi - legendary first centuries of Roman state. Even if time of Kingdom was semi - legendary as it is, the time of the Republic certainly was not. Even if it was, how can you then claim that Republic was democratic before the time of Polybius. I don't intend to prove you obvious and generally accepted facts( I should maybe give you the source and quotation that Kingdom fell in 509?). Well, I won't, you are above that and you should certainly know things way better. If Republic was near democracy it was at the II and I century B.C, everything before was rule of minority covered by leafs of democracy. So if Battle of orders dissapeared somewhere in III century we should easily accept that Roman state before that period was fluorishing democracy? well, maybe by your theories they elected President, Senate, Congress or governing body, had voting boxes and all those stuffs?


That said, the real critical point here is that fundamentally all the non-anachronically obsolete observations of your long last post are intended to demonstarte the manipulation or the Roman popular vote by some not too clearly defined group.

Could you be more specific? About what kind of manipulation are you talking about? If centurias didn't voted like poor centurias didn't in most cases, their vote was only reckognized in theory. In practice it was worth like snow from the last year. So real power for naming magistrates was in the hands of the richest and Senate, that is first two centurias. Should I repeat it again?
Lucius Vorenus is offline  
Old November 7th, 2012, 01:29 PM   #53
Suspended indefinitely
 
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 19,934

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucius Vorenus View Post
You defend your theory about democracy of Roman Republic by negating things I never questioned. You might read my previous posts where I mentioned that Polybius writings are maybe the best state description we have from Rome. But what you clearly don't want to admit is that Republic at first centuries of its existance was ruled and ran mostly by patrician families needless to say by minority. I gave you generally accepted, reliable theory of comitias which should in theory(but didn't for very long time) represent masses in power, and you still are building your argument on unfounded thesis about semi - legendary first centuries of Roman state. Even if time of Kingdom was semi - legendary as it is, the time of the Republic certainly was not. Even if it was, how can you then claim that Republic was democratic before the time of Polybius. I don't intend to prove you obvious and generally accepted facts( I should maybe give you the source and quotation that Kingdom fell in 509?). Well, I won't, you are above that and you should certainly know things way better. If Republic was near democracy it was at the II and I century B.C, everything before was rule of minority covered by leafs of democracy. So if Battle of orders dissapeared somewhere in III century we should easily accept that Roman state before that period was fluorishing democracy? well, maybe by your theories they elected President, Senate, Congress or governing body, had voting boxes and all those stuffs?


That said, the real critical point here is that fundamentally all the non-anachronically obsolete observations of your long last post are intended to demonstarte the manipulation or the Roman popular vote by some not too clearly defined group.

Could you be more specific? About what kind of manipulation are you talking about? If centurias didn't voted like poor centurias didn't in most cases, their vote was only reckognized in theory. In practice it was worth like snow from the last year. So real power for naming magistrates was in the hands of the richest and Senate, that is first two centurias. Should I repeat it again?
Amazing as it may sound, anything before let say the Gaulish sack of the city (possibly CCCLXVII AUC / 387 BC) must be considered semi-legendary at best.

That said, in a nutshell you are simply attempting a most fallacious mirror straw man; i.e. you are pretending to denounce & condemn from me the very fallacious practices you have been using all along this nice thread, when I have never used them here.

Just remember you were the one objecting my posts, not the opposite...

Maybe you should take a moment and determine with some care & patience (and the minimal precision) exactly on which points may you think that you actually disagree with yours truly.

Again, my point here (Theory ???) couldn't be any simpler:
The Roman Republic was from the very first moment it was attested (even within semi-legendary narratives) rather democratic by any standard.

In fact, possibly even more democratic than either the US or the UK by the XVIII century.

Even the Patricians of the legendary early Republican times inevitably required the direct popular vote from even the poorest Romans to occupy any regular magistracy.

That's the very key core definition of the noun democracy:
Quote:
A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections
(Source: Merriam-Webster)

Last edited by sylla1; November 7th, 2012 at 02:06 PM.
sylla1 is offline  
Old November 7th, 2012, 02:51 PM   #54

Lucius Vorenus's Avatar
Boss(ma)niac.
 
Joined: Sep 2012
From: Dalmatia Interior
Posts: 2,695
Blog Entries: 1

No matter how legendary or semi - legendary that period is(according to your assumptions) you can never, but never, abolish the fact that comitias votes were actually votes of the richest, and if that's democracy or A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections, then so be it.

I again urge you to read my previous posts carefully, in which I gave you exact quotations from reckognized authors you obviously heard for, and I don't intend to do it again. Actually you might again read my post about Polybius on which sou based your theory about democracy in Republic, which I never directly questioned as far as II and I century are concerned. So instead of reading only posts you like, you might want to re-read some. Easy as that, fallacious straw whatever.
Lucius Vorenus is offline  
Old November 7th, 2012, 03:19 PM   #55
Suspended indefinitely
 
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 19,934

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucius Vorenus View Post
No matter how legendary or semi - legendary that period is(according to your assumptions) you can never, but never, abolish the fact that comitias votes were actually votes of the richest, and if that's democracy or A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections, then so be it.

I again urge you to read my previous posts carefully, in which I gave you exact quotations from reckognized authors you obviously heard for, and I don't intend to do it again. Actually you might again read my post about Polybius on which sou based your theory about democracy in Republic, which I never directly questioned as far as II and I century are concerned. So instead of reading only posts you like, you might want to re-read some. Easy as that, fallacious straw whatever.
Easy as that, after such an obscure post I still could only wonder on which points exactly would you consider that we may disagree; you are not giving too many hints, you know.

Anyhow, let's try a couple of your most bizarre assertions:

- The lack of hard historical evidence for essentially any Roman stuff earlier than at least the Brennus' sack is currently still an objective undeniable fact; if you may disagree, please share with us any relevant hard evidence on the opposite (nope, not your bare opinions; evidence)

- You are (deliberately?) misrepresenting your own quotations from Morstein-Marx & others: in the Roman popular assemblies the affluent vote might have been in practice overrepresented (as it has been in practice so prevalent among virtually any democratic regime, either ancient or modern) but no one has denied yet that even the poorest Romans effectively still voted; period.

- You are again attempting a Nirvana fallacy; not being the Roman Republic a pristine perfect Utopian ideal democracy (I'm not aware of any such historical example) couldn't deny the evident democratic nature of the Roman Constitution and practices, even relative to modern standards, and certainly even according to your own quoted sources.

- And yes, all the ordinary Roman republican magistracies before the pseudo-Dictatorship of CJ Caesar were democratically elected (under any definition) by the popular vote of the Roman people (nope, not just the Patrician or the rich vote, but the vote of the whole Roman people) even the whole ordinary cursus honorum of CJ Caesar himself (pontifex, quaestor, aedil, praetor & consul), as anyone could easily verify.

I have already posted the core definition of democracy; it couldn't fit any better to the Roman practices as stated by your own tertiary sources; I can't even remotely imagine why would you insist in your bare denial of such evident historical fact.
sylla1 is offline  
Old November 7th, 2012, 05:20 PM   #56

Mosquito's Avatar
bloody
 
Joined: Apr 2011
From: Sarmatia
Posts: 5,715

Quote:
Originally Posted by sylla1 View Post
- You are (deliberately?) misrepresenting your own quotations from Morstein-Marx & others: in the Roman popular assemblies the affluent vote might have been in practice overrepresented (as it has been in practice so prevalent among virtually any democratic regime, either ancient or modern) but no one has denied yet that even the poorest Romans effectively still voted; period.


- And yes, all the ordinary Roman republican magistracies before the pseudo-Dictatorship of CJ Caesar were democratically elected (under any definition) by the popular vote of the Roman people (nope, not just the Patrician or the rich vote, but the vote of the whole Roman people)
No, thats actually not truth that "even the poorest Romans effectively still voted; period" or "by the popular vote of the Roman people (nope, not just the Patrician or the rich vote, but the vote of the whole Roman people)".

Comitia Centuriata voted until majority was found. It means that in most cases the lower classes were not voting.

Quote:
During a vote, all of the Centuries of one class had to vote before the Centuries of the next lower class could vote. The seven classes voted by order of seniority: first the officer class, then the first enlisted class, then the second enlisted class, then the third enlisted class, then the fourth enlisted class, then the fifth enlisted class, and then finally the unarmed Centuries. When a measure received a majority of the vote, the voting ended, and as such, many lower ranking Centuries rarely if ever had a chance to actually vote.
from

Century_Assembly Century_Assembly


Im so happy to find that our beloved Sylla is ill informed lol
Mosquito is online now  
Old November 7th, 2012, 05:46 PM   #57
Suspended indefinitely
 
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 19,934

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mosquito View Post
No, thats actually not truth that "even the poorest Romans effectively still voted; period" or "by the popular vote of the Roman people (nope, not just the Patrician or the rich vote, but the vote of the whole Roman people)".

Comitia Centuriata voted until majority was found. It means that in most cases the lower classes were not voting.



from

Century Assembly - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Im so happy to find that our beloved Sylla is ill informed lol
Your happiness may be a bit premature .

I mean, where are all your primary sources?
Or absolutely any other relevant hard evidence?
Naturally I mean even remotely backing such nice wiki-categorical assertion...


For the record, they didn't vote any further (irrespectively on the money involved) once the majority had been reached.

Naturally because the result was already definitive, and no additional votes (of any money) would have modified it.

Let say once Obama would have obtained his 270th electoral vote yesterday...

Even the radically democratic Athenians behaved in the same way.

Guess it's not difficult to understand why, huh?

Last edited by sylla1; November 7th, 2012 at 06:00 PM.
sylla1 is offline  
Old November 7th, 2012, 05:56 PM   #58

Mosquito's Avatar
bloody
 
Joined: Apr 2011
From: Sarmatia
Posts: 5,715

Quote:
Originally Posted by sylla1 View Post
Your happiness may be a bit premature .

I mean, where are all your primary sources?
Or absolutely any other relevant hard evidence?
Naturally I mean even remotely backing such nice wiki-categorical assertion...
First - I knew about that information how did centurial assembly work long before, actually Iv read it in many books. I only took wiki article to show you that your knowledge is not always equal to your arrogance

I cant tell you for sure the source but I remember even my professors at university talking about it. Maybe check book of Scullard, if I remember well he wrote about it too. Probably also Geza Alfoldy "Social history of Rome"(Römische Sozialgeschichte) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G%C3%A9za_Alf%C3%B6ldy (excellent book)

Last edited by Mosquito; November 7th, 2012 at 06:04 PM.
Mosquito is online now  
Old November 7th, 2012, 06:10 PM   #59
Suspended indefinitely
 
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 19,934

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mosquito View Post
First - I knew about that information how did centurial assembly work long before, actually Iv read it in many books. I only took wiki article to show you that your knowledge is not always equal to your arrogance

I cant tell you for sure the source but I remember even my professors at university talking about it. Maybe check book of Scullard, if I remember well he wrote about it too. Probably also Geza Alfoldy "Social history of Rome" Géza Alföldy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (excellent book)
"Maybe"?
"Probably"?
If you say so...

For now, let just mention the ambitus legislation.
(Guess this wiki-article would be enough as an introduction, right ?

Ambitus Ambitus


Hint:
Please check out the 23 references of this nice wiki-article, most of them actually relevant Classical sources.

Yup, amazing as it may sound, any single piece of information is as valid as its primary source(s), either Wiki or any other.

BTW, are you familiar with the ambitus concept?
sylla1 is offline  
Old November 7th, 2012, 06:14 PM   #60

Mosquito's Avatar
bloody
 
Joined: Apr 2011
From: Sarmatia
Posts: 5,715

Quote:
Originally Posted by sylla1 View Post

For the record, they didn't vote any further (irrespectively on the money involved) once the majority had been reached.

Naturally because the result was already definitive, and no additional votes (of any money) would have modified it.

Let say once Obama would have obtained his 270th electoral vote yesterday...

Even the radically democratic Athenians behaved in the same way.

Guess it's not difficult to understand why, huh?
I see you edited post and added above comment. As I siad before I know how did Comitia centuriata work but thank you for this farther explanation and clarification.

Such type of clarification... I mean explaining obvious things which were said by someone else earlier... is it your hobby?
Mosquito is online now  
Reply

  Historum > World History Forum > Ancient History

Tags
constitution, republic, roman


Thread Tools
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Books on roman kingdom and roman republic Raist Ancient History 5 June 10th, 2012 08:49 AM
Books about the Roman Republic duccen History Book Reviews 5 December 15th, 2011 01:26 PM
Social group on the Roman republican constitution sylla1 Ancient History 0 November 25th, 2011 03:53 PM
Roman Republic VS Roman Empire CRUSADERcro Ancient History 36 November 26th, 2009 02:32 AM
Roman Republic vs. Roman Empire ice2w Ancient History 9 March 25th, 2009 09:26 PM

Copyright © 2006-2013 Historum. All rights reserved.