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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


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 XII - The Management of Land and of Capital


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Page 33

Roman Wealth

The whole gain from these immense transactions of the Roman capitalists flowed in the long run to Rome; for, much as they went abroad, they were not easily induced to settle permanently there, but sooner or later returned to Rome, either realizing their gains and investing them in Italy, or continuing to carry on business from Rome as a centre by means of the capital and connections which they had acquired. The moneyed superiority of Rome as compared with the rest of the civilized world was, accordingly, quite as decided as its political and military ascendency.

Rome in this respect stood towards other countries somewhat as the England of the present day stands towards the Continent--a Greek, for instance, observes of the younger Scipio Africanus, that he was not rich "for a Roman." We may form some idea of what was considered as riches in the Rome of those days from the fact, that Lucius Paullus with an estate of 60 talents (14,000 pounds) was not reckoned a wealthy senator, and that a dowry--such as each of the daughters of the elder Scipio Africanus received--of 50 talents (12,000 pounds) was regarded as a suitable portion for a maiden of quality, while the estate of the wealthiest Greek of this century was not more than 300 talents (72,000 pounds).

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