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By Sian Lewis

Tyrants are greater than simply the antithesis of democracy or the mark of political failure: they come up in keeping with social and political pressures. amassing jointly writings by way of major historians, political theorists, and philosophers, this ebook is a comparative research of the autocratic rulers and dynasties of classical Greece and Rome and the altering options of tyranny of their political concept and culture.

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Cf. Last 1945; Momigliano 1967. Cornell 1995: 251–2 believes that the patriciate existed in some form in the regal period. 6. The interregnum was supposedly restored in 509 bc, when Brutus appointed Sp. 5). 7. 1 is concerned to offer a rationalising explanation as to why the patres chose as king a neutral candidate from outside their own number. 8. Mitchell 1990: 130 sees the patres as hereditary priests who found a place in the senate only as the king’s advisers. 9. Wirszubski 1950: 111. 10. Cic.

Several factors, however, suggest that ancient writers fundamentally misunderstood the archaic reality. 21 All this probably indicates that kings often imposed themselves on Rome rather than being elected voluntarily by the Romans. Typically the kings of Rome are outsiders (perhaps conquerors) and never patricians. 2). Only Numa dies in his bed. 22 However, the king’s ‘election’ is better viewed as a ceremony whereby the new ruler accepts the homage of his new subjects, receives the approval of the gods, and thereby legitimates his authority.

On the one hand there appears to be a regular method of making a ‘true’ king. 2 The aim of this chapter is to explore, and suggest resolutions for, this apparent inconsistency. This chapter derives from part of my unpublished PhD thesis, ‘The Roman Kingship in the Sixth Century bc’ (University College London, 1995). Focusing on the rex sacrorum, the regalia, the interregnum, and the role of women in the succession, the thesis demonstrated the ways in which the kings reinforced and legitimated their power, in response to the demands of a rapidly changing society.

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