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VI. Decline and Fall of the Republic: In c.105 BC, Germanic tribes were wreaking havoc in central and
southern Gaul, inflicting serious defeats upon Roman armies. Rome was in a panic, so they elected
Marius to the consulship by the Comitia Tributa despite the fact that he is not eligible. Between c.100
and 60 BC Rome will experience a steady deterioration of the Republic as a healthy, functioning
representative democracy.
A. Marius (105-86 BC)
B. Sulla (88-80 BC)
C. Pompey (78-48 BC): In 80 BC, Sulla resigned the dictatorship and retired to a quiet island.
After he died in c.78 BC, various individuals struggled for control of Rome. After putting
down Spartacus’ slave revolt, Pompey emerged as the dominate figure.
D. First Triumvirate: Triumphantly, Pompey returned from the East in c.62 BC, but the Senate
did welcome him warmly. Two other ambitious men, Caesar and Crassus were unhappy with
the Senate. In c. 60 BC Pompey, Caesar, and Crassus formed the First Triumvirate. The First
Triumvirate was simply an agreement to work together (amicitia) for five years. In the 50s BC
gang warfare wracked the city of Rome as Caesar and Crassus were with armies fighting
foreign wars. Eventually, Crassus was killed.
E. Julius Caesar (60-44 BC) --
5. Immediately after the murder of Caesar, Marcus Antonius (Antony) seized control of
Rome. Having been Caesar’s most trusted compatriot, Antony promised to avenge his
death and honor his life. Also, Antony claimed to possess Caesar’s will which named
his nephew Octavian as his heir. The Senate saw Octavian as a potential candidate to
oust Antony but planned to discard Octavian when that had been accomplished. This
plan backfired. In c.43 BC Antony, Octavian and Lepidus marched on Rome.
F. Second Triumvirate -- commission to reform the state, all had imperium, all had power to
appoint, all decrees had force of law w/o Senatorial consent
G. Antony v. Caesar
1. Battle of Philippi
2. Brundisium
3. Battle of Actium