Simonton's Argument On Oligarchy: The Rise Of The Republic

790 Words4 Pages
Simonton’s argument on oligarchy as an ideological commitment to anti-democracy that was historically preserved by political institutions is a brand new scholarly theory. How does Beard’s historical account of the rise of the Republic maybe tell a story of an oligarchy trying to accommodate the popularity of popular government while still maintaining control? The rise of the Republic is poorly documented yet again by the Romans, Beard notes. The Roman mania for simplification hid much of what had happened; this simplification also arose from the fact that there were few records. Beard describes the political structure of the early Republic and looks at Barbatus as a primary example. His epitaph provides the first look at the transition period; Beard notes too the “fragile chain of connection” (138) between Livy and some of the events he recorded. Beard begins her documentation of the founding of the Republic with the Twelve Tables; she notes the collective pride the Romans had for this opaque collection of laws and she describes how the tables point out multiple inequalities that would be dealt with by the Republic. The tables do not describe the early Republic as later writers would; it is not a grandiose town but a fairly typical town for its size…show more content…
Here is the forerunner to many political districts our governments use today. A little further on, this assembly was given binding power over the entire state - a momentous step. Moving forward, all major priesthoods and offices, even consul, despite determined resistance, were opened up to plebeians. Additionally, the enslavement for debts was abolished “establishing the principle that the liberty of a Roman citizen was an inalienable right” (148). Finally, the story of decemviri, with more classical Roman elements, concludes the gains of the
Open Document