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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


V. The Establishment of the Military Monarchy

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 I - Marcus Lepidus and Quintus Sertorius


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Page 31

Death of Sulla and Its Consequences

Amidst this state of matters the sudden death of Sulla took place (676). So long as the man lived, at whose voice a trained and trustworthy army of veterans was ready any moment to rise, the oligarchy might tolerate the almost (as it seemed) definite abandonment of the Spanish provinces to the emigrants, and the election of the leader of the opposition at home to be supreme magistrate, at all events as transient misfortunes; and in their shortsighted way, yet not wholly without reason, might cherish confidence either that the opposition would not venture to proceed to open conflict, or that, if it did venture, he who had twice saved the oligarchy would set it up a third time.

Now the state of things was changed. The democratic Hotspurs in the capital, long impatient of the endless delay and inflamed by the brilliant news from Spain, urged that a blow should be struck; and Lepidus, with whom the decision for the moment lay, entered into the proposal with all the zeal of a renegade and with his own characteristic frivolity. For a moment it seemed as if the torch which kindled the funeral pile of the regent would also kindle civil war; but the influence of Pompeius and the temper of the Sullan veterans induced the opposition to let the obsequies of the regent pass over in peace.

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