Blood in the Forum: The Struggle for the Roman Republic

Blood in the Forum: The Struggle for the Roman Republic


By (author) Pamela Marin

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  • Publisher: Hambledon Continuum
  • Format: Hardback | 256 pages
  • Dimensions: 156mm x 234mm x 24mm | 499g
  • Publication date: 2 June 2009
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 1847251676
  • ISBN 13: 9781847251671
  • Illustrations note: 10 bw illustrations
  • Sales rank: 560,337

Product description

This is the story of the last century of the Roman Republic - why and how did the Republic succeed and why did it ultimately fail? Was the destruction of the Republic attributable to one man a?? Julius Caesar a?? or was he perhaps the most visionary of his colleagues in realising that the Rome of the past had changed? Are the actions of men like Brutus and Cassius in assassinating Caesar worthy of admiration, or were they the final gasp of a fallen world? Pamela Marin begins by examining the ideals underpinning the Roman Republic, and relates the legendary story of Cincinnatus. In the year 458 and again in 439 BCE, Cincinnatus was approached to assume the dictatorship in order to lead a military struggle against a rebellious tribe in central Italy. After resolving the threat he stepped down from the dictatorship after fifteen days. This almost immediate resignation was viewed as the ultimate example of civic duty, modesty, good leadership, and above all, service to the res publica. This near-mythic story of the small farmer leaving his crops to tend to the political crisis of the early Republic found resonance as the centuries passed, and Cincinnatus became the exemplar of Republican virtue. By the first century BCE, many were bemoaning the decline of integrity and Republican values: the Roman historian Sallust commented "in these degenerate days...who is there that does not vie with his ancestors in riches and extravagance rather than in uprightness and diligence?" In her illuminating book Pamela Marin anatomises the drama of the final days of the Roman Republic, untangles the shifting alliances and betrayals that led ultimately to the assassination of Caesar on the Ides of March in 44 BCE, and reveals the backdrop to the rise of Octavian, Romea??s first Emperor, Augustus.

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Author information

Dr Pamela Marin lectures in the School of Classics at University College, Dublin.

Review quote

"Includes interesting vignettes about what being a Roman meant, aristocratic politics and competition, the role of violence in Roman politics, and so on...Summing Up: Recommended." -J. de Luce, CHOICE, June 2010

Table of contents

Introduction; Chapter 1: What it Was To Be Roman; Chapter 2: A Blueprint for Civil War? Sulla and the 80s BCE; Chapter 3: The Up and Coming Generation Rome in the 70s BCE; Chapter 4: Hopes for the Future: Rome in the 60s BCE; Chapter 5: Rome in Crisis? The Catilinarian Conspiracy in 63 BCE; Chapter 6: A 'First' Triumvirate? Rome in the late 50s BCE; Chapter 7: Violence in Republican Rome: The Truth of the Early 50s BCE; Chapter 8: Civil War: Caesar versus Cato; Chapter 9: Caesar's Death and the Fall of the Republic.