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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 VIII - Law, Religion, Military System, Economic Condition, Nationality


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Page 5

Nevertheless this censorial prerogative was of so immense importance, that in virtue of it the censorship, originally a subordinate magistracy, became in rank and consideration the first of all.(5)

5. Cf. II. III. Censorship, the Magistrates, Partition and Weakening of the Consular Powers

The government of the senate rested essentially on this twofold police control supreme and subordinate, vested in the community and its officials, and furnished with powers as extensive as they were arbitrary. Like every such arbitrary government, it was productive of much good and much evil, and we do not mean to combat the view of those who hold that the evil preponderated.

But we must not forget that--amidst the morality external certainly but stern and energetic, and the powerful enkindling of public spirit, that were the genuine characteristics of this period--these institutions remained exempt as yet from any really base misuse; and if they were the chief instruments in repressing individual freedom, they were also the means by which the public spirit and the good old manners and order of the Roman community were with might and main upheld.

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