nation-state/empire/tribal

Ingrid Melve Ingrid.Melve@uninett.no
Fri, 12 Oct 2001 13:22:13 +0200


> > Romans seemed much more pragmatic, and happily extended
> > their vaunted citizenship to people of all races and
> > religions, as long as they gave their due to Rome. Even
> > their emporers could be German or African. But the
> > central government wasn't just located at Rome. It *was*
> > Rome. At least, until it was also Byzantium. This is an
> > empire mentality, rather than a nation-state mentality.
> 
> "Happily extended" may be optimistic.

Depends on your definition of happily.
Extend and embrace (but keep the power where it belongs), would be 
closer.  And given the role of clients, the henchmen of a senate patron, 
the term happily would depend on context: issuing citizenship to a 
patron's client would make both him and the client happy.

> I don't know at what point rich, latin
> speaking?, non-italian subjects became 
> eligible for citizenship, but by 50 BC
> the republic was pretty much done for,
> and monarchs/tyrants* ran the empire.

The Roman Empire has a great track record of "things you can buy for 
money" being a quite extensive class of things.  By Caesar's time it 
encompassed the class of "all things, with a possible exception of 
Caesar's wife who must be above suspicion".

> Vespasian is also known for having
> Jerusalem sacked, thus destroying
> the second temple.  (who got rid
> of the first temple? when?)

Nebuchadnezzar, ruler of Babylonia, around 587 BC
(this was a question on a test in Music history way back in high 
school, right before the teacher was admitted to a sanatorium.  It 
turned out to be relevant for the "By the rivers of Babylon" song.)


Ingrid