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Q1) Who was Clodius?
Q1) Who was Clodius?
Clodius was a tribune in 58 BC. With
Caesar’s help he had changed his
status from patrician to plebeian so
that he was eligible for this office.
Clodius had been humiliated by
Cicero in the law courts and thus
sought revenge against him.
Q2) Summarise the significance of
Caesar’s consulship in 59 BC.
Q2) Summarise the significance of
Caesar’s consulship in 59 BC.
• Caesar’s conduct as consul broke both the spirit
and the letter of the law. He ignored the Senate
and he ignored the veto of the other consul,
Bibulus. Caesar was immune from prosecution as
long as he was a consul or proconsul (and,
indeed, he had granted himself a pro-consulship
in Gaul for 5 years). However, the threat
remained. Also, the violent and illegitimate
means used by Caesar were a blow to the
ongoing functioning of the Republic.
Q2) Summarise the significance of
Caesar’s consulship in 59 BC.
•
Additionally, the lex Campania (which had annexed land for
Pompey’s soldiers as well as some plebeians) had antagonised
many rich and powerful Romans. The standing of Caesar and
his fellow triumvirs was consequently damaged.
Q3) Summarise the significance of
Clodius’ tribunate.
Q3) Summarise the significance of
Clodius’ tribunate.
• Clodius was an ally of Caesar. As such, he ended
the use of omens as a means of delaying the
conduct of public affairs. This retrospectively
legitimised Caesar’s conduct as consul.
Clodius had his arch-enemy, Cicero, exiled and his
property appropriated. This drove a wedge
between Pompey (who was a friend of Cicero’s
but did not stand up for him) and Caesar. Clodius
also got Caesar’s nemesis, Cato, out of the way by
sending him on a mission to Cyprus.
Q4) What strains were there on the alliance between Caesar,
Pompey & Crassus in the period from 58 -56 BC?
Q4) What strains were there on the alliance between
Caesar, Pompey & Crassus in the period from 58 -56 BC?
• The first triumvirate had always been an alliance of
convenience (Pompey and Crassus were in fact traditional
enemies). The decisions made by Caesar in 59 BC and Clodius
in 58 BC had ramifications which put strain on this alliance.
Clodius (backed by Crassus) and Pompey used rival gangs to
intimidate each other. This lead Pompey to call for his old
friend, Cicero, to be allowed to return to Rome. Cicero
returned the favour by lobbying for Pompey to be given
command of the grain supply, a position of considerable
power. This had the effect of making the other two triumvirs
jealous of Pompey’s power.
Q4) What strains were there on the alliance between
Caesar, Pompey & Crassus in the period from 58 -56 BC?
• Pompey himself was not without resentment. He was
sensitive to popular opinion and felt embarrassed by his
association with Caesar’s consulship. He was also jealous of
Caesar’s successes in Gaul. In relation to Gaul, Caesar was
threatened by Domitius Ahenobarbus, who was campaigning
for the consulship with the policy of recalling Caesar from
Gaul.
Q5) What was the agreement struck by Caesar,
Pompey & Crassus at Luca in 56 BC? How did this
agreement serve the interests of the three members
of the triumvirate?
Q5) What was the agreement struck by Caesar,
Pompey & Crassus at Luca in 56 BC? How did this
agreement serve the interests of the three members
of the triumvirate?
• The essence of the agreement was that Pompey & Crassus
would stand for the consulship in 55 BC. They would then
realise their proconsular ambitions (eg. Crassus wanted to
take control of Syria and did). They would also extend Caesar’s
proconsular command over Gaul for another five years.
In addition, the understanding was that Cicero would stop
calling for the lex Campania to be rescinded and Caesar to be
recalled. Crassus would cease any association with Clodius
and his gangs.
Q5) What was the agreement struck by Caesar,
Pompey & Crassus at Luca in 56 BC? How did this
agreement serve the interests of the three members
of the triumvirate?
• This agreement clearly served the interests of all three men. It
addressed the increasingly hostile relations between Pompey
& Crassus by proposing that they would share power as
consuls. It addressed the challenges to Caesar by extending
his command in Gaul.
Q6) What means did Pompey and
Crassus employ to gain the consulship
in 55 BC?
Q6) What means did Pompey and
Crassus employ to gain the consulship
in 55 BC?
• Pompey and Crassus had the elections for consul in 55 rigged.
Firstly, they used violence and obstruction to prevent the
elections happening until the year 55 began. They then
ensured that the interrex, consequently in charge of the
elections, was their man. In turn the interrex made sure
Pompey and Crassus were the only candidates.
Q7) What events in 53 BC lead to the
breakdown of the triumvirate?
Q7) What events in 53 BC lead to the
breakdown of the triumvirate?
• Two deaths weakened the ties that had bound
the triumvirate together. Firstly, Caesar’s
daughter and Pompey’s wife, Julia, died.
Pompey rejected Caesar’s offer of a new
political marriage affirming their alliance.
Secondly, Crassus died in battle against the
Parthians in Syria.