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Please note that Mommsen uses the AUC chronology (Ab Urbe Condita), i.e. from the founding of the City of Rome. You can use this reference table to have the B.C. dates


II. From the Abolition of the Monarchy in Rome to the Union of Italy

From: The History of Rome, by Theodor Mommsen
Translated with the sanction of the author by William Purdie Dickson

The History of Old Rome

CHAPTER III - The Equalization of the Orders, and the New Aristocracy


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Should this conviction become --as was inevitable--more and more prevalent, and should the plebeian aristocracy at the head of its order take up the struggle with the patrician nobility, it would wield in the tribunate a legalized instrument of civil warfare, and it might, with the weapon of social distress, so fight its battles as to dictate to the nobility the terms of peace and, in the position of mediator between the two parties, compel its own admission to the offices of state.

Such a crisis in the position of parties occurred after the fall of the decemvirate. It had now become perfectly clear that the tribunate of the plebs could never be set aside; the plebeian aristocracy could not do better than seize this powerful lever and employ it for the removal of the political disabilities of their order.

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