Reference address :

ELPENOR - Home of the Greek Word

Three Millennia of Greek Literature
Constantinople Home Page  

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


III. From the Union of Italy to the Subjugation of Carthage and the Greek States

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 XI - The Government and the Governed


The Original Greek New Testament

» Contents of this Chapter

Page 20

Family Government

Indeed, matters had already at this time reached such a height, that out of the grave evil of oligarchy there emerged the still worse evil of usurpation of power by particular families. We have already spoken(19) of the offensive family-policy of the conqueror of Zama, and of his unhappily successful efforts to cover with his own laurels the incapacity and pitifulness of his brother; and the nepotism of the Flaminini was, if possible, still more shameless and scandalous than that of the Scipios.

19. Cf. III. IX. Death of Scipio

Absolute freedom of election in fact turned to the advantage of such coteries far more than of the electing body. The election of Marcus Valerius Corvus to the consulship at twenty- three had doubtless been for the benefit of the state; but now, when Scipio obtained the aedileship at twenty-three and the consulate at thirty, and Flamininus, while not yet thirty years of age, rose from the quaestorship to the consulship, such proceedings involved serious danger to the republic.

Things had already reached such a pass, that the only effective barrier against family rule and its consequences had to be found in a government strictly oligarchical; and this was the reason why even the party otherwise opposed to the oligarchy agreed to restrict the freedom of election.

Previous / First / Next Page of this Chapter

Do you see any typos or other mistakes? Please let us know and correct them

The History of Old Rome: Contents ||| The Medieval West | The Making of Europe | Constantinople Home Page

Three Millennia of Greek Literature

Receive updates :

Learned Freeware

Reference address :