Primitive Italy and the Beginnings of Roman Imperialism

By Léon Homo | Go to book overview

CHAPTER IV
THE POLICY OF ANNEXATION AND THE POLICY OF PROTECTORATES

I
THE FIRST PROVINCES

THE successive cessions of Sicily ( 241), Sardinia and Corsica ( 287) by Carthage, on the one hand, and the victorious campaign in Illyria ( 229-228), on the other, had raised a serious new problem for Rome--that of the organization of her domain outside Italy. The unification of Italy had been followed by the conquest of the Mediterranean basin. How would the Roman State--and it alone, for the Italic federation, whatever its part in the conquest of these lands, had no voice in their organization--proceed to solve this problem? Once more the Roman genius, practical and realistic as it was, did not turn to any pretty abstract theories, but to its practical experience of men and affairs for solutions. These solutions were discovered almost simultaneously during the fourteen years intervening between the end of the First Punic War ( 241) and the definite organization of Sicily and Sardinia (about 227). During this brief period Rome laid the foundations and fixed the principles of an administrative system which was to govern the Mediterranean world for more than six centuries. She devised the system of provinces and the system of protectorates, two parallel schemes, two complementary ideas.

By the treaty of 241 Carthage abandoned her Sicilian possessions to Rome. It then became necessary to give the conquered territory some permanent organization. Rome

Bibliography.--Texts : Texts are rare (see the bibliographies to Chapters II and III). In the first place, Livy, books XXXI-XLV (down to 167), notably XLV, 29-30; 26, 12-15 (organization of protectorates in Macedonia and Illyria), and Polybius, books I-V (intact) and VI-XL (fragmentary down to 146).

Principal Works. -- XIV, IX, 48-56, 57-63, 64-68, 203-7, 211-29, 450-51, 462-68; CCXXVI, I, 427-58; CXIV; CVII; CCXXbis; K. J. Neumann, in XLVIII, 1917, 1-10.

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