mmw3lecture2 - Week One Outline Lecture TwoThe Formation of...

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Outline Lecture Two—The Formation of the Roman Republic Key Questions: 1) What are some defining patterns in the history of the Roman Republic? 2) What persistent tensions existed within the Roman republic? I) Historical Origins of Rome a) Livy’s Conflation of Myth and History livy tends to conflict his myth and history i) Writing around 26 BCE during the early reign of Caesar Augustus Important time of change in Rome. Caesar became undisputed ruler. In Livy’s writing, there is a feeling of optimism now that there is a powerful leader. ii) Finding an explanation and justification for the grandeur and imperial destiny of Rome (1) Birth of Remus and Romulus Its almost as if the fate of Rome is already written in the book of fate, that is has already arised. Even in the legend of the birth of remus and romulus, he gets this explanation for why Rome is a great city. It entailed the rape of one of the vessel virgins. He talks about it like it was a sacrificial token. It is like a token to allow Rome to realize its goal. Twins , remus and romulus, are found and reared by wolves. Even after romulus dies, livy describes an episode in which romulus disappears. It almost forshadows the story of Jesus coming back after he does. Livy also associates this story with romulus. (2) “Rome shall be the capital of the world.” (35) Livy says “make sure that all romans learn to be soldiers because it is heavens will that Rome shall be the capitol of the world” (3) Auspicious signs (a) Temple of Terminus (79) Found a human face that had all its features preserved and for some reason it became an auspicious sign for the permanence and stabilty of Rome. (b) The doors of the Temple of Janus The doors would remain open if Rome was still in a state of arms, or process of expansion. The doors would be closed if there was a rest from war or expansion. Livy says with a sense of pride that the doors of this temple have only been closed briefly twice which says that Rome is constantly at war and expanding. *all these signs are supposed to say that Rome is going to be the capitol of the world. Livy offers a very confusing account of who exactly are the Romans and who exactly they are indebted to for this system. Role of Etruscans, kind of an adversary of Rome. All historians agree that all the kings that livy are talking about, were mostly Etruscan, not Roman. In some ways, livy and his contemporaries are jumping onto traditions that are not their own. It gets confusing when it comes to who is Etruscan, roman, or latin. iii) Etruscan Not Trojan Origins? Etruscan- culturally advanced, maybe even most advanced people that lived there. Might have introduced the polis system. Most likely came from asia minor. (a) Livy’s attribution of Rome’s ancestry to Aeneas
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This note was uploaded on 09/12/2008 for the course MMW 3 taught by Professor Chamberlain during the Spring '08 term at UCSD.

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mmw3lecture2 - Week One Outline Lecture TwoThe Formation of...

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