HUMthoughtexercises - The Roman RepublicB Thought Exercises...

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The Roman RepublicB Thought Exercises 1. The struggle of the orders occurred throughout the third, fourth, and fifth centuries BC. Although it is called a struggle, it was a quite peaceful time. The “orders” were the patricians, who were the wealthy people, and the plebeians, who were the poor people and everyone else. However, as the plebeians began to become wealthier, they started to want more rights (this is where the struggle begins). In 450, law was written down by the patricians in the “Law of the 12 Tables” but patricians gave all the rights to themselves. In 445 the plebeians gained the right to marry patricians so that their offspring could be patricians. In 367 the plebeians could be members of the consul, and in 300 they were allowed to become priests. In 287 laws were passed by the plebeians that bound all Romans, even the patricians. This overall change/struggle was a slow but peaceful process done legally through a constitution. 2. The Punic Wars were fought between 264 and 146 BC, between Rome and Carthage (a Venetian colony). The legendary cause is set forth in Virgil’s Aenead . Aeneas was a Trojan prince who was defeated by the Greeks and needed a homeland, so he set off in the Mediterranean. He sailed around and then landed in Africa (Carthage). There, Aeneas met Dido and she fell in love with him, so they went out to the countryside and took shelter in a cave. However, they had opposing ideas about their relationship; Aeneas was not interested in committing to the relationship (like most typical men), while Dido thought Aeneas was her new king. Therefore, Aeneas’ excuse was that the gods visited him and told him that he was destined to found Rome, not be king. So as he made preparations to leave, Dido found out and cursed him and his people into perpetuity forever. Because they were cursed, the Romans had to get rid of the curse by leveling Carthage/completely destroying it. That was the legendary cause, but the real cause of the Punic Wars was that Carthage could control trade from the east to the west and were located in a strategic point for defense. In the first Punic War (264-241 BC), Rome wanted to control Sicily to control trade in the Mediterranean. It started in one little city but then expanded to the whole island. The Romans were victorious and Sicily became their first province; they then took over Sardenia and Forseca, which were their second provinces. The second Punic War (218-202 BC) began on an island off the coast of Spain. The Venetians wanted it from Rome, so they sent one of their biggest generals, Hannibal, who succeeded in securing Seguntem. He continued down over the Alps to Italy, which marked the very beginning of the breakdown of the Roman Republic. This is called Hannibal’s Legacy; he came down and ravaged the countryside with his war elephants (many of them died on the journey) until he had the whole length of Italian peninsula. However, the Romans got Hannibal out by attacking Seguntem so that Hannibal would have to
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HUMthoughtexercises - The Roman RepublicB Thought Exercises...

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