Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

be styled, of the conquered, distinguished by more independent names. The Latins, more or less connected, as we have seen, with the Romans from the earliest period, and afterwards overthrown in the great war which has been also mentioned, were, for the most part,51 endowed with the privileges of the municipalities or else received into the Tribes of Rome. If any nation, after the conquest of Italy, preserved the appearance of independence, it was this, however real were its dismemberment and its actual dependence.

A large number of the more remote people in the Latin and even in the Italian territories were, together with the Latin colonies, comprehended under the common appellation of the Latin Name, by which they were distinguished from the proper Latin nation.52 The union of these towns or districts, in which various as well as widely separated races had their habitations, would have been as impracticable as it was arbitrary, but for their common subordination. Only a portion of the private rights 53 pertaining to Roman citizenship were bestowed upon them; and although they might elect their own magistrates, and in some cases preserve their own laws, they were seldom, if ever, allowed to set their limits

51 Livy's account (VIII. 14) em- 53 The Commercium, or the right braces the whole.

of property. The magistrates of 52 Perhaps originally applied to these communities were admitted to what was called New Latium, in the more general rights of citizens. contradistinction to the Old. See Gaii Instit., I. sect. 96; a reference Beaufort, Rép. Rom., Livre VII. which may apply to the later class ch. 1.

of Latins. See Book III. ch. 3.

ens.

upon the services they were bound to render. The condition of the Latin colonies, heretofore described, would exactly match that of the entire Latin Name, but for the fact that many of the colonies were invested with superior privileges as citizens.

The Latin Name, as an inferior estate to the conquered people, whose lot has been previously recounted, was generally joined with the allies 54 in the enumeration of the subjects whom Rome obtained in Italy. The union of the latter, like that of the former class, with the Romans, would be more appropriately termed a surrender instead of an alliance; a large extent of their territory being generally seized, and the services required from the Latin or the colonist being augmented rather than diminished in respect to the allied state. Nor was the preservation of their laws and governments available to secure the so-called allies against complete submission; and it is singular to remark, that they who had the title of Free 55 were less independent than those called the Federate Allies,56 in respect to the common head of all. Even the forms of the institutions which they were permitted to observe were often altered by influences they could not escape, or by open commands they dared not disobey; and it sometimes seems as if the Roman policy had been pursued to disgust the Italian allies, with whom alone we are here concerned, to such a degree, as to make them seek

serva

54 " Socii [ac] nomen Latinum." Liv., XXI. 55, etc.

55 Socii liberi.
56 Socii fæderati.

102

LIBERTY OF ROME.

IBERTY OF ROME

TOU

incorporation in the Commonwealth on the same nominal terms to which others were reduced before or after them. It may often have happened, in consequence, that a people would, as of its own accord, subscribe their allegiance to the great Roman dominion.57

The disasters of Volsinii, a renowned Etruscan city,58 soon after its submission and alliance to Rome, are among the instances, which might have been oftener recorded than they were, of the evils from which many of the allies must have suffered. After their conquest, the Volsinians fell victims to luxury. and indolence, which it was harder for them to resist, in the day of their degradation, than it had ever been, in the day of their independence, to withstand the Roman arms. Through means and for purposes of which there is no clear account,59 the slaves of the city were liberated and elevated, while the masters sank into the former condition of the slaves, who, as was natural, ran riot in the midst of enormities it is useless to describe. The helpless Volsinians sent secretly to Rome for aid; and though an army under the command of Fabius Gurges, then Consul for

57 This was called “ Fundus 58 « Erat opulenta, erat moribus fieri.” Cic., Pro Balb., 8. But it et legibus ornata,” etc. Val. Max., is a condition hardly to be distin- IX, 1, sect. 2. guished from that of the Socii Fe- 59 Zonaras (VIII. 7) says the adderati, mentioned in the preceding ministration of public affairs was note. It was an entirely different abandoned to the slaves, because of affair when an allied or a subject the indolence of their masters. Cf. state adopted a single law. See De Vir. Illust., XXXVI. Cic., loc. cit., and consult Heinecc., Antiq. Rom., Adpend., Lib. I. cap. 2, sect. 88.

AND CONDITION

the third time, was able to rout and punish the wretched creatures who had abused their freedom, it was more than any general or any army could achieve to raise the sunken hopes or to reform the corrupted habits which, as natural results of conquest, had brought the Volsinians so low.

The time was at hand when the dominion of Rome and the degradation of her subjects were coextensive throughout the heathen world. The desolation of the vanquished was not the less the consequence than their submission was the beginning of the triumph to which the victors were called amongst the ancient nations. But the Italians, of whom a large number were to serve with the Romans, and as the Romans, in the career of conquest and abasement of which the first steps had been taken when the settlers on the Palatine fought for the Capitoline hill, were not, of course, so much the objects as the instruments of the afflictions yet to be wrought in the name of Rome. It seemed enough that they should be reduced to strict dependence, but, at the same time, induced to seek a nearer connection with their conquerors rather than to desire a dissolution of their bonds. We have seen how thoroughly they were humbled; we have yet to watch the effects of their new situation, and to learn if the old homes and the laws of their fathers will be forgotten in the wider prospects opening before them, though they stood be

nan

60 A. C. 265. Florus, I. 21. and the loss of their general. FloZonaras, VIII. 7.

rus and Zonaras, ut supra. 61 Though not without difficulty

low, and not upon, the seven hills. The words on the tomb of Scipio, -- "He took Taurasia, Cisauna in Samnium, he subdued all Lucania, and brought away hostages,62 — read like a prophecy respecting the submissiveness of the Italians.

62

Taurasia Cisauna
Samnio cepit, subigit omne Loucana, opsidesque abdoucit."

Orelli, Inscr. Lat., 550.

« НазадПродовжити »