Early Roman Republic
The end of the Monarchy period was the beginning of the early republic of ancient Rome.
The last king that ruled them was Tarquinius Superbus. He was very cruel. After this happened, they had to start a system that would lead the people of Rome.
The new system is referred to as a Republic. This is exactly what happens, people of their own volition choose representatives that would decide for them.
Furthermore, the system was divided into three sub systems in the ancient Roman republic.
The legislative branch also referred to as the senate, consists of a group of 300 persons who were from Rome’s Patrician class.The Patrician class refer to the richest families of Rome.
The last king that ruled the people of ancient Rome was overthrown by the Patricians because they were fed up with his style of leadership.
Facts about Early Roman Republic
- The Senate possessed the highest authority and the senators occupied that position till the end of their lives.
- Two consuls who are also referred to as Magistrates made up the Executive subsystem. They were elected yearly. Their power was similar to that of a king. They either could approve or disapprove each other’s decision. They adopted the concept from Sparta. The judicial subsystem consisted of the Praetors and were chosen annually by the Romans. They were appointed as Judges.
- In the Early republic, Roman officials were people of the Patrician or rich class, however, this made the lower class and the middle-class people of Rome also referred to as the Plebeians to be left out. This was a call for concern as no one seemed to care for these set of people.
- Exactly this year 494 BC, there was a major event that happened. In History, it is referred to as the “Struggle of the Orders.” The Roman Army were majorly the Plebeians. They were not happy with the situation of things. They said they were performing their civic responsibilities as soldiers but were not active participants in the system of leadership. They did not fight but left the City of Rome to start a new life of living.
- The Patricians were quick to realize that they would always need the Plebeians. Changes in the system ensued. They added Tribunes to the legislative branch of government. They were chosen annually. They were directly in charge of the issues affecting the Plebeians.
- Then in the year 451 BC, the senate was forced by the Plebeians to put into writing the Roman laws so that they can be accountable. Twelve stones tablets with laws that were put in local places for everyone. Prior to writing the laws, the Patrician usually alter the laws to favor themselves. In 376 BC, another event occurred that was in favor of the Plebeians. The Licinian law permitted one consul to be chosen from the lower- and middle-class people of Rome, also referred to as the Plebeians.
- The republic was not without fault. This is so because in a republic so many officials are involved in making decisions. This will delay quick making of decisions in an emergency situation.
- However, the Romans knew just the right thing to do. They appointed an individual who would be their Dictator and this position would be held just for six months. He had free rein to make decisions without the Senate.
- One early and special Dictator they had was a great and humble man called Cincinnatus. He was made a Dictator in 458 BC owing to the fact that an enemy wanted to fight the people of Rome. Before that time, he was a consul but he had retired and then became a farmer. After he accepted the dictatorship position, they went to war and then won the victory.
- Cincinnatus only ruled for sixteen days instead of the whole six months which would have ascribed great power to him. He was indeed a humble Dictator. He felt his work was completed since the crisis was over.
QUESTIONS AND ANWERS ON THE EARLY REPUBLIC
- Which subsystem possessed the highest authority of the Roman Republic
Answer: The Senate possessed the highest authority of the Roman Republic.
- The last King that ruled the ancient people of Rome was overthrown by?
Answer: The Patrician
- In what year did the Plebeians force the Senate to put the laws into writing?
Answer: 451 BC
- What law permitted a Consul to be elected from the lower and middle class people also known as the Plebeians?
Answer: The Licinian law