Translated with the sanction of the author by William Purdie Dickson
It was the final result of the revolution--and both parties, the nominally conservative as well as the democratic party, had co- operated towards it and concurred in it--that of this venerable structure, which at the beginning of the present epoch, though full of chinks and tottering, still stood erect, not one stone was at its close left upon another.
The holder of sovereign power was now either a single man, or a close oligarchy--now of rank, now of riches. The burgesses had lost all legitimate share in the government. The magistrates were instruments without independence in the hands of the holder of power for the time being. The urban community of Rome had broken down by its unnatural enlargement.
The Italian confederacy had been merged in the urban community. The body of extra-Italian allies was in full course of being converted into a body of subjects. The whole organic classification of the Roman commonwealth had gone to wreck, and nothing was left but a crude mass of more or less disparate elements.
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