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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 XI - The Old Republic and the New Monarchy


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Page 137

Provincial Administration of the Oligarchy

In the administration of these provinces oligarchic misrule had reached a point which, notwithstanding various noteworthy performances in this line, no second government has ever attained at least in the west, and which according to our ideas it seems no longer possible to surpass. Certainly the responsibility for this rests not on the Romans alone. Almost everywhere before their day the Greek, Phoenician, or Asiatic rule had already driven out of the nations the higher spirit and the sense of right and of liberty belonging to better times.

It was doubtless bad, that every accused provincial was bound, when asked, to appear personally in Rome to answer for himself; that the Roman governor interfered at pleasure in the administration of justice and the management of the dependent communities, pronounced capital sentences, and cancelled transactions of the municipal council; and that in case of war he treated the militia as he chose and often infamously, as e. g. when Cotta at the siege of the Pontic Heraclea assigned to the militia all the posts of danger, to spare his Italians, and on the siege not going according to his wish, ordered the heads of his engineers to be laid at his feet. It was doubtless bad, that no rule of morality or of criminal law bound either the Roman administrators or their retinue, and that violent outrages, rapes, and murders with or without form of law were of daily occurrence in the provinces.

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