Roman History

A.Y. 2020/2021
Overall hours
Learning objectives
The course aims to provide students with an exhaustive comprehension of the development of the history of ancient Rome from its foundation to the fall of the Empire, by focusing especially on political, institutional and socio-economical problems.
Expected learning outcomes
Upon successful completion of the course students are expected to be able to frame the most important and significant figures and facts of the history of ancient Rome in their related chronological and geographical contexts. Furthermore, students should be capable of conveying historical information in a clear and effective way, by employing appropriate linguistic instruments such as adequate language and specific vocabulary.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Lesson period
First semester
The course will be organized into online synchronous and asynchronous lectures to be held on the platform Teams.
The synchronous lectures will be held on the platform Teams according to the scheduled timetable of the course; they will be also recorded and uploaded on the Ariel website of the course of Roman History.
Asynchronous lectures will be directly uploaded on the Ariel website of the course in correspondence of the scheduled timetable of the course.
The first, central and final lectures of each unit will be held as synchronous lectures on Teams according to a calendar which will be published on Ariel before the beginning of the course. These occasions will be devoted to introduce or recapitulate the topics treated or the be treated in the related units; furthermore, students will have the opportunity to ask questions and to discuss themes related to the course with the teacher.
All further information concerning the course, the timetable of asynchronous and synchronous lectures, the instructions as to the access to the Teams classroom of the course and the topics of the course will be provided on Ariel.
As all lectures will be available for streaming or downloading on Ariel, no distinction will be made between attending and non attending students. All students are expected to follow the video-lectures and to study the related notes, the uploaded slides and the books of the programme.
Course syllabus
The course is organized into three 20-hour Parts, A, B and C.
Part A will start with an introduction to the ancient evidence - literary, epigraphical and archaeological sources - which are normally employed for the reconstruction of the history of Rome. Special attention will be paid to historiographical traditions, which will be outlined by references to the most important ancient historians. Thereafter, following a brief excursus devoted to the mythical origins of Rome, the course will treat the monarchic age of Rome, by focusing on the most relevant facts and figures of that period. After outlining the Etruscan period of Rome, the course will proceed to analyse the most relevant themes regarding the fall of the monarchy and the subsequent birth of the Republican state.
Following this part, a section of the unit will be devoted to a short detailed introduction to the principal Roman political and administrative institutions and figures, such as magistrates, assemblies, etc., which will help students better comprehend the development of the history of the city.
Afterwards, the course will focus on the period from the 5th century BC to the Hannibalic war, by paying a special attention to the following themes:
· The patrician-plebeian conflict and the emergence of the nobilitas.
· Early Roman expansionism in Latium and central Italy.
· Relationships between Rome and the Latin League.
· The Samnitic Wars.
· Pyrrhus' campaign in Italy and Sicily and the prodromes of the First Punic War.
· Roman expansionism in southern Italy.
· The First Punic War.
· The Second Punic War and its consequences on Roman expansionistic strategy in the Italian peninsula.
· Roman expansionism outside Italy, especially in Iberia.
· The creation of the first provinces and the implementation of the first administrative measures to manage newly incorporated territories.
· The development of the political clash in Rome between 3rd and 2nd century BC.
· A modern historiographical pattern to interpret Roman expansionism: the concept of Romanization.
Whilst studying the early stages of Roman expansionism in central Italy, particular attention will be paid to describing the main administrative tools that Rome employed to control its new territory, such as strategy of colonization, pacts, foedera, etc.
Part B will be devoted to the analysis of the main events of the history of Rome between the 2nd century BC and the 1st century AD, by especially focusing on the international role that Rome progressively took on in the Mediterranean area.
Among the most significant facts of the period under analysis, the course will delve into the following themes:
· Early diplomatic-political contacts between Rome and Greek communities.
· Early diplomatic-political contacts between Rome and Hellenistic kingdoms: the Macedonian Wars and the Syrian War.
· Consequences of Roman expansionism: the agrarian crisis and Ti. Gracchus' and C. Gracchus' reforms.
· The emergence of C. Marius and the reform of the Roman army.
· Relationships between Rome and Italic communities until, during and after the Social War.
· The civil wars and Sulla's reform of the Roman state.
· The development of political life in Rome from the first triumvirate to Caesar's death.
· Octavianus' emergence and the foundation of the principate.
· Main characteristics of the Augustan principate: political reforms, new cultural impulses, further expansionism of the Roman empire.
· Main aspects of the Julio-Claudian dynasty.
Part C will start by introducing the main characteristics of the Flavian dynasty, followed by a presentation of the main events which regarded the history of Rome until Nerva's principate. Thereafter, the course will take on a monographic perspective and will focus on the reading of Plinius' Panegyric of Trajan, which will help students to delve into principate main features in the early 2nd century AD.
Prerequisites for admission
No prerequisites for admission.
Teaching methods
The course will be offered in a lecture format. Each lecture will feature the use of slides, which will contribute to a better illustration of the treated themes, thanks to schemes, geographical maps, reproductions of inscriptions, archaeological materials and excerpts from ancient literary sources (in translation). The slides containing literary sources will be uploaded on the platform Ariel and will be the subject of questions during the final exam.
During the course special attention will be paid to the utilization of specific (technical) vocabulary, so that students can learn to use it in an appropriate way when describing, for example, the political institutions of Rome.
Should students have doubts on the treated themes, they are encouraged to ask questions during and after the lectures.
Students are encouraged to follow lectures on a regular basis, as during the course themes will be treated, which are not available in the suggested bibliography.
Teaching Resources
Bibliographical references:

Part A
1) Handbook Manuale: G. Cresci Marrone, F. Rohr Vio, L. Calvelli, Roma antica. Storia e documenti, Il Mulino.
2) Polybius, Histories, Book 6th (chapters 1-19, 51-58, only in translation. Suggested edition: D. Musti, Polibio, Storie, Vol. Terzo. Libri V-VI, Rizzoli BUR, Milano 2008-).
3) Video-lecture notes and related slides.

Part B
1) C. Letta, S. Segenni (a cura di), Roma e le sue province. Dalla prima guerra punica a Diocleziano, Carocci.
2) The following articles of E. Gabba, avalaible on Ariel (38 pp.): "Le origini della città in Italia", "La costituzione a Roma", "Roma e il mondo ellenistico. I cambiamenti in una civiltà".
3) Video-lecture notes and related slides.

Part C
1) Plinio il Giovane, Panegirico a Traiano (Mondadori).
2) Cl. Nicolet, Il mestiere di cittadino nell'antica Roma, Editori Riuniti Univ. Press.
3) Video-lecture notes and related slides.

Students aiming to take the 6 credits exam must attend Part A and Part B, study the related lectures notes, texts (available on the Ariel platform) and bibliographical material for Parts A and B.
Students that will take the 6 credits exam are exonerated from following Part C and from studying the related material
Students who will take the 9 credits exam must attend Parts A, B and C, and study the related lecture notes, texts (available on Ariel) and bibliographical material for the Parts A, B and C.
Assessment methods and Criteria
Assessment will consist of an oral examination, in which students will be evaluated as to the knowledge and the competencies they acquired during the course and in the subsequent preparation for the exam.
On the one hand, it will be assessed, by means of a series of questions related to different periods of the history of Rome, to what extent students are able to correctly frame facts and figures into their historical contexts; in this respect, students are expected to have acquired precise and detailed knowledge of the most relevant themes of Roman history as well as of specific episodes and problems of a political-institutional nature.
On the other hand, students are expected to organize a coherent and logical discourse, in which they should present themes and problems of Roman history with correct historical, chronological and geographical references, and by means of appropriate (also technical) vocabulary.
Students will also be asked to read and comment one of the texts (excerpts from ancient sources, in translation) that have been shown during the course (and made available on Ariel).
Students taking the 6 credits exam will be examined on the lecture notes, on the texts and on the bibliographical material of Parts A and B.
Students taking the 9 credits exam will be examined on the lecture notes, on the texts and on the bibliographical material of Parts A, B and C.

International or Erasmus incoming students are kindly requested to contact the teacher of the course. Also students with disabilities should contact the teacher of the course, in order to discuss alternative examination methods, in agreement with the competent Office.
Unita' didattica A
L-ANT/03 - ROMAN HISTORY - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica B
L-ANT/03 - ROMAN HISTORY - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Unita' didattica C
L-ANT/03 - ROMAN HISTORY - University credits: 3
Lessons: 20 hours
Educational website(s)