3. 22 A2 Unit ah4 (Entry Code F394): Roman History: the use and abuse of power



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3.22 A2 Unit AH4 (Entry Code F394): Roman History: the use and abuse of power
Option 1: The fall of the Roman Republic 81–31 BC

The thematic focus of this option is the way in which key events and key individuals in Roman politics led to the fall of the Republic and brought about one-man rule.



Candidates will be expected to have read a selection of appropriate original sources on the following topics, and to refer to them in supporting their answers:

  • the changing distribution of power during this period:

    • Sulla’s reforms 33-40

    • Restoration of the powers of the tribunes 55-57, 58

    • changes in composition of jury courts: 20, 364-5, 36, 59

    • Assembly decisions on foreign and military policy: 65-66, 67-9, 125-6, 153-4, 358-9;

    • Clodius’s use of the tribunate 132-9

    • Caesar’s dictatorships 197-207

    • power passes to the Second Triumvirate: 223-5;

    • power shared between Antony and Caesar Octavian: 228-44;

  • the importance of institutions and individuals (including Sulla, Pompey, Crassus, Caesar, Cicero, Cato, Clodius, Catiline, Antony, Octavian):

    • Sulla 25-40, evaluation 37-40

    • Pompey. Consult index for career. Evaluation 188-9

    • Crassus. Consult Index for career. Evaluation 159

    • Caesar. Consult index for career. Reasons for assassination 203-6

    • Cicero. Consult index for career and works. After Caesar’s death: 211-25;

    • Cato. Consult Index for career.

    • Clodius. Consult Index for career.

    • Catiline. Consult index for early career. Conspiracy 86-104

    • Antony: 208-47;

    • Caesar Octavian: 214-48;

  • the challenges made by these individuals and factions to the authority of the Senate, and the various responses to emergencies:

    • Sulla and the Senate 33-40

    • Pompey and Crassus in 70, 57-9

    • Pompey’s Extraordinary Commands 62-72

    • The Catilinarian Conspiracy 86-104

    • The First Triumvirate, formation of, 115-122

    • Caesar’s Consulship of 59, 122-131

    • Clodius’s Tribunate 132-139

    • Civil War 170-189

    • Caesar’s dictatorships 193-207

    • the Senate after Caesar’s death: 209-22;

  • the extent of participation by citizens and the growing importance of the plebs and their demands:

    • the electoral system 14-15

    • restoration of the powers of the tribunes 55-7, 58

    • Caesar’s aedileship 74

    • Catiline and plebs 87-89, 92-3

    • Support for Cicero, Concordia ordinum, 84, 92-3, 97-8

    • use of plebs by Clodius 132-3, 135-6, 142, 145, 152, 163-4, 164

    • and Caesar’s reforms 197-201

    • the plebs’ reaction to the murder of Caesar, 209-13;

  • the means by which politicians in this period achieved success:

    • Military leadership of Sulla 23, 24, 25-7

    • Military leadership of Pompey 29-30, 45-6, 48-9, 66-7, 69-72, 105-6, 175-87

    • Wealth of Crassus 31, 72, 108

    • Caesar’s aedileship 74; support from Crassus 73-75;

    • Support for Catiline 87-9, 92-4

    • Clodius’s use of plebs 132-3, 135-6, 142, 145, 152, 163-4, 164

    • Caesar’s military leadership 118, 126, 148, 159, 162, 165, 167, 171, 180-196, 200-1

    • Antony and Caesar’s wealth and papers: 210-13;

    • Caesar Octavian and money, Antony and Caesar Octavian and Caesar’s veterans, Caesar Octavian as Caesar’s heir: 214-23;

    • propaganda in writing, art and architecture: 242-6, 334-7;

    • religion and political power: 316-7, 321;

    • bread and circuses’ – distribution of grain and entertainments: 353-5;

    • military success and wealth acquired through conquest: 356-7;

  • the development of violence and fraud as a political tool in Rome;

    • Sulla’s proscriptions 30-2, 40-3

    • Catilinarian Conspiracy 86-104

    • during Caesar’s Consulship of 59, 122-6

    • Clodius’s use of plebs 132-3, 135-6, 142, 145, 152, 163-4, 164

    • Milo 142-3, 145, 163-4, 166-7

    • Sestius 142-3, 147-8

    • Gabinius, return and trial,

    • In elections for 55, 152; for 53, 161-2; for 52, 163-4; Murder of Clodius 164-5; Pompey’s Sole Consulship 52, 165-9;

    • violence after Caesar’s murder: 211-13;

    • the proscriptions of the Second Triumvirate: 223-5;

  • the developing importance of military and provincial commands in the Roman political system:

    • Sulla 23, 24, 25-7

    • Pompey 29-30, 45-6, 48-9, 66-7, 69-72, 105-6, 175-87

    • Caesar 118, 126, 148, 159, 162, 165, 167, 171, 180-196, 200-1

    • Crassus and Carrhae 154-9

    • Governors: Verres 60-1; Lucullus 50, 51, 52-3, 63, 67-70, 109, 117; Cato 137-8; Gabinius 152-3, 160; Cicero 170-1;

    • division of the Empire between Antony and Caesar Octavian: 232;

  • the social and economic effects of conflict on the Roman world:

    • economic impact of pirates 63-4

    • impact of repeated warfare on economy in 60s 87-8

    • economic problems caused by Civil War 197-201

    • shortage of money, confiscations, fines and taxation in Rome and the provinces: 224-37, 243, 247;

    • effects on small farmers and the rise of large estates: 229-31, 303-4;

    • famine in Rome caused by blockades of Sextus Pompey: 229-36.



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