Topic 1: Explain and analyse the Government of Rome from the 2nd Century to 78BC, (the Roman Republic).
The government of Ancient Rome from the 2nd Century BC to 78 BC was called the Roman Republic. It was a system which operated under a senate, magistrates and the Tribunes of the Plebeians. This was a very effective political system in representing the people of Rome. There were also a number of assemblies and smaller political parties which attempted to have their ideas put into action. In the years with the fall of Republic imminent, the Romans instituted the power of these men to a single man; the Emperor. Under an emperor, the cursus honorum (ladder of politics) still operated but absolute power and authority was now held by the emperor.
The Roman’s did not have a written constitution, but rather one which had evolved in the course of the struggle between the patricians and plebeians. By 264 the Republican government had virtually acquired the form it was to retain, although it did undergo further changes in the second and first centuries. The Roman Government followed the usual pattern of other ancient constitutions – the administrative structure included a council (senate), magistrates and people’s assemblies.
In theory the senate was a purely advisory body, but in practice it became the really governing body in Rome. Its power increased during the wars with Carthage, and its supremacy in the state was consolidated during the second century. Senatorial power was based not on low but purely on custom, precedent and the prestige of its individual members. The senate had a number of functions and duties that it was responsible for. They appointed provincial governors, and allocated their provinces and duties. They send and received embassies. Responsible for dealing with all crises that were a potential threat to the state. The senate could not make laws, but could pass decrees (senatus consulta). They also allocated public funds to censors to public...