1. Introduction: Moving (the) Masses, Then and Now
The mainstream media, liberals and Hollywood are pitching a super-sized hissy fit over President Trump’s decision to protect the fruited plain from blood-thirsty jihadists. They seem to think we are under some sort of moral obligation to allow refugees to flood into the country without vetting and pray that nobody gets blown up … spare us your righteous indignation.1(Todd Starnes, 30 January 2017, Fox News).
Those whom disgrace or crime had driven out of their homes, like wastewater, these men had flowed together at Rome.2(Sallust, The War of Catiline 37.5)
And it is no wonder that this is what was said in the senate by this tribune of the plebs: that the urban plebeians are too powerful in the Republic; that they must be drained; indeed this is the word he used, as though he were speaking about some wastewater and not about a class of the best citizens.3(Cicero, On the Agrarian Law 2.70)
2. ‘Drain the... Plebs!’: Metaphors for Moving the Masses in Late Republican Rome
[they were] mixed from every sort of bilge (ex omni conluvione), exiles, debtors, those convicted of a reckless crime, for the most part, when they had lived in their own communities and under their laws, and afterwards, due to various reasons, a similar fate had heaped them into a mass (conglobauerat) at Agathyrnum, eking out a life through robbery and rapine.32
... I have as warm a regard for him as you. The fact remains that with all his patriotism and integrity he is sometimes a political liability. He speaks in the Senate as though he were living in Plato’s Republic instead of Romulus’ cesspool (faece).35
And it is no wonder that this is what was said in the senate by this tribune of the plebs: that the urban plebeians are too powerful in the Republic; that they must be drained (exhauriendam); indeed this is the word he used, as though he were speaking about some bilge water (sentina) and not about a class of the best citizens.41
O fortunate Republic, if it shall have thrown out this bilge (sentinam) of the city! By Hercules, with Catiline’s removal (exhausta) alone I think the Republic has been relieved of a burden and created anew.48
As for the populace and Pompey, I am meeting them (as I also want to do) by way of purchase. If that is properly organised I believe the dregs of the city can be cleared out (sentinam urbis exhauriri) and Italy repeopled.52
3. Displacing the Plebs Urbana and Freedmen from Caesar’s Rome: The Creation of a ‘Gutter Empire’?
Caesar wanted to ingratiate himself with the masses, so that he might make them his own all the more. ... The excessive multitude of the city, which was being riven by discord, would thus be turned toward labour and agriculture; and the majority of Italy, now desolate, would be colonised again, so that not only those who had endured hardship on the campaigns, but all the rest as well, would have sufficient subsistence.61
4. Towards an Elite Theory of Roman Colonisation: From Romulus’ Asylum to the Fatal Shores of Australia’s Penal Colonies
... readings of aspects of Roman society ... might at first sight make Rome appear a worthy model for aspirational European ‘multiculturalism’ at the beginning of the twenty-first century. We need, however, to be very careful. ... It is also salutary in this context to note that Rome’s ‘openness’ or ‘race-mixture’ has been idealized in distinctly non-liberal contexts within recent history.
Then, lest the vastness of the city be vacant, for the sake of increasing the mass of people Romulus resorted to an old plan of city founders, who by assembling together a shady and abject mass to themselves, they used to falsely claim that their children had been born of the earth.87
The other type of lands, uncultivated because of barrenness, vacant and deserted due to their pestilential environment, will be bought from those who, if they do not sell them, see that they must be abandoned by them. And it is no wonder (et nimirum) that this is what was said in the senate by this tribune of the plebs: that the urban plebeians are too powerful in the Republic; that they must be drained (exhauriendam).95
Rome was founded by a band of outlaws. English outlaws are every whit as good material for founding an empire as were the followers of Romulus.112.(October 1872)
The primitive history of Australia, like the foundation of Rome, is a tale of intrepid and adventurous buccaneering. Its Romulus and Remus were nurtured at the dugs of Convictism, a fiercer wolf than the alma mater of the Tiber.113.(January 1888)
Would he not class the whole thing [sc. Australia] as a fable, a latter-day imitation perhaps of the tale of Romulus’ Asylum? We ourselves are inclined to believe that Romulus must have been a kind of primordial Captain Arthur Phillip, and his Asylum as much a reality as the landing at Sydney Cove, just one hundred and sixty years ago.114.(January 1894)
|The band of Romulus, it is most certain,|
|Were ruffian stabbers and vile cutpurse knaves;|
|Yet did this outcast scum of all the earth|
|Lay the foundations of the Eternal City.120|
5. Displacing Plebeian Agency: Volition in the Historiography of Roman Colonisation
“Specious Compulsion”: Velitrae and Other Forms of Forced Colonisation
6. Conclusions: Towards a More Complex View of Colonisation in the Roman Republic
Conflicts of Interest
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In using the term “domestic displacement”, I take inspiration from Barbara Arneil’s (2017, pp. 23–24) recent monograph on “domestic colonies” in the modern colonial era. The heuristic of “domestic displacement” has only been sporadically applied in other fields, referring, for example, to the influence of the displacement brought about by the British penal colonies on poets such as Wordsworth (O’Brien 2007, pp. 122–23) or the role of the arctic territory in Iceland’s economic policies (Ingimundarson 2015, pp. 83, 94). In the field of Ancient History and Classics, however, “domestic displacement” remains as yet an unconsidered heuristic category. I adopt it instead of the more common “internal displacement” (as per the UNHCR), since the designation of “domestic” allows for greater emphasis to be placed on (a) the notion of the displacement being tied specifically to a polity’s domestic politics (rather than due to outside forces causing internal displacements), and (b) less on the strict notion of displacement as something occurring within a state’s borders, which does not pertain to the Roman context. Rather, like modern colonies, Roman colonies became extensions of the polity, but because they geographically separated groups of citizens from the same polity, they differ from internal displacements where the physical ‘separateness’ imposed by geographical distance or a topographical feature (i.e., a body of water) is often less pronounced. Even so, there are problems with comparing Roman colonies to modern colonies under this model, as is discussed below in Section 4.
Thus, I have attempted to test and build on the brief suggestions of a few scholars. Most recently, Woolf (2017, p. 35) submits that: “Arguably some Republican period colonization represents a variation on this process [of forced foundations of cities in Greece and the Near East], the main difference being that decision making was not taken by a monarch, and that a large part of the settlers were apparently volunteers. This second proposition is traditional wisdom but might be questioned. The testimony on mid-Republican colonies suggests frequent failures, many manifested in colonists leaving their new settlements. The involvement of non-citizens in some foundations also raises questions about how far settlers were entirely free to choose.” Hin (2013, p. 214) also briefly considers colonisation as ‘forced migration’, though she does not delve into any details and prefers to consider a few macro push and pull factors affecting colonisation initiatives. Purcell (1994, pp. 654–55) also approaches the broad outlines of what follows, but without going so far as to see Roman colonisation as a forced movement of the plebs and freedmen. Harris (1979, p. 65), writing of colonies in the Middle Republic, comes closest to considering the socio-economic factors which I discuss in this paper, but still refers a priori to their popularity (and ergo, the voluntary participation of colonists): “There may have been some compulsion, and if the ordinary colonists were people who were previously sunk in poverty, their freedom of choice was limited; none the less the colonies could not have worked unless they met a popular need.”
Colonists could, of course, participate in the political life of their colony and Roman colonists were enrolled in voting tribes at Rome, but Roman citizens who became Latin colonists lost their right to participate in Rome’s voting assemblies. The physical distance of many colonies from the urbs also meant that many Roman colonists likely did not cast their votes in the assembly or participate in other key political venues, such as the contio.
Best represented in Millar’s (1998) monograph, Wiseman’s (2009) collection, and Courrier’s (2014, pp. 427–582) exhaustive study of the collective action of the plebs. Note, however, that all three authors approach the ‘democratic’ element in very different ways, Millar more forcefully than all others. The future direction of the field is perhaps signalled by Steel et al. (2018), who acknowledge the real role of ideology in ‘popular’ politics and its inseparableness from political institutions; see also Rosillo-López (2017). In all of these treatments, colonisation has not been taken as an instrument of elite intervention in ‘popular’ politics—as an institution which served elite ideological needs—beyond discussions of land distribution as popularis or ‘popular’ proposals designed to curry favour with the Roman people. See also the qualifications and overview of the debate provided by Logghe (2017), who restates the ‘democratic’ case by focusing on discrete areas of plebeian agency.
For a philological study of some of these metaphors, see Kühnert (1989), who confines her study to Cicero and does not link these metaphors to the common theme of waste, nor, as we shall see, colonisation initiatives. By contrast, Càssola (1988, p. 9) offered an incisive, if brief, snapshot of the evidence, but not the extended analysis and framework I offer below. Gowers’ (1995, pp. 29–30) tour de force, though more concerned with the genre of satire, also lit the way for a semiotics of sewerage tied to Roman politics. Most recently, Courrier (2014, p. 495 n.253) too easily dismisses these terms as simply “moral” in character and lacking any socio-economic quality: “Les qualificatifs tels que perditi, egentes, sentina, faex et sordes ne relèvent pas d’une sphère socio-économique mais uniquement morale, tout comme les qualificatifs infimi et inferiores (toutefois nettement moins péjoratifs).”
The debate over the number of freedmen and rates of manumission will likely never be resolved, in the absence of better evidence; but we can at least say that manumission was common in the period under consideration here, and that freedmen were likely numerous—perhaps numbering more than 100,000. For the latest discussion and the problems with our evidence, see Mouritsen (2011, pp. 120–41). If we can trust Suetonius, the number of citizens who received the grain dole numbered 320,000 under Julius Caesar (see Section 3 and Section 4 below), which may be somewhat indicative of the magnitude of the plebs urbana. We do not, however, know if this number included only male citizens, or their families too. In what follows I adopt the standard parlance of “freedmen”, but in so doing it is not my intention to efface freedwomen from this history; hence, freedwomen should be assumed to be included in this grouping, though we lack the specific sources to link them to colonial foundations in the same way that we can for freedmen, for example, in the epigraphic record at Corinth.
Compare his contribution in this volume (Padilla Peralta, forthcoming) on what he terms “copropolitics” and the imaging of the foreigner as a waste product. On the use of metaphors of dirt to vilify certain individuals and social groups in Athenian (and more broadly Greek) society, see Lindenlauf’s (2004, pp. 98–99) insightful analysis, especially with regard to Aristophanes.
Cf. De Ste. Croix’s (1981, p. 355) earlier critique of ancient historians who accepted consciously and unconsciously the Roman elite’s derogatory views of the non-elites as historical reality, especially in terms of the metaphors considered in this section. Indeed, the prejudices of the field during the twentieth century are underscored by one British school ‘Examiner’ (1943, p. 58), who anonymously advocated, in the well-respected journal Greece and Rome, that these Roman metaphors be used to make parallels to the British unemployed: “In the background [to Rome’s civil strife], as the raw material of this anarchic and brutal era there is the ‘mob’, sentina urbis, faex Romuli (most schoolboys can quote these two tags). A proper subject for moral judgements, as it has been from the days of Juvenal and earlier, it serves for many a neat parallel with our pre-war unemployed, with the corn dole as a counterpart to the Unemployment Assistance Board. It is this ‘mob’ which was at last won to ignoble quietude with the bread and circuses of the Caesars, the high-water mark of popular degeneracy.”
Livy 10.15.9: orare ut ex caeno plebeio consulatum extraheret maiestatemque pristinam cum honori tum patriciis gentibus redderet. That Oakley (2005, p. 195) notes how “this episode probably has little basis in fact, resting almost entirely on annalistic invention” strengthens the possibility that Livy was drawing on an image common to his own day (or his sources’). Compare its use at Cic. Vat. 17 and 23 to describe Vatinius’ obscure origins, like the application of conluvio to Gabinius below at n.30.
Plebs infima: Cic. Mil. 95 (mass), Leg. 3.20 (leader), Att. 4.1.5 (mass); Livy 10.6.4 (mass), 24.23.10 (mass). For similar usage in the imperial period, see: Pliny NH 19.54 (mass), Sen. Controv. 10.3.5 (mass), Suet. Otho 7.1, Tac. Hist. 2.38, 2.91. Infimus populus: Varr. Ling. 5.7.2. Plebs ima: Iuv. 8.47. On the connection between this metaphor and the living conditions of Rome, see Blonski (2015, p. 62). Courrier (2014, p. 347) on the plebs summa, media, and infimus as socio-economic gradations.
See Bremmer (1991, pp. 25–26) and Trentin (2015, p. 76) on the self-degradation implied in figures seated on the ground, namely beggars. Most famously, Myron’s anus ebria, sometimes interpreted as a beggar woman, is seated directly on the ground. Furthermore, Trentin’s (2015, pp. 104–8) study of sculptures depicting hunchbacks includes a whole category of seated figures—all of which appear to be sitting on the ground, not on furniture.
See Mattusch (2014, pp. 48–49, fig. 25). Compare Trentin (2015, pp. 74–75) on hunchback beggar figurines, but note that her examples do not have the explicit gesture of the outstretched arm. For a standing Ethiopian bronze ‘beggar’ figurine from the Cleveland Museum of Art, but not without the problem that its hand and begging bowl are restorations, see Stewart (2014, p. 236, fig.141). A full study of ‘beggars’ in the visual arts of the Hellenistic and Roman periods remains to be undertaken.
Of course, as a coin box, she could never be too ‘thin’ in size, otherwise it would render the functionality of the box redundant. That such an object was also owned by someone who was clearly not in the socio-economic position of the girl depicted further reinforces how visual representations could reinforce elite discourses about the non-elite. On emaciation, visual depictions of ‘beggars’, and the attendant problems with the ancient terminology and its visual corollaries, see Bradley (2011). Note that he does not consider issues beyond the terminology and visualization of poverty through flesh(iness), such as posture or proximity to the ground. Other approaches tend to focus on literal representation—compare Rose (2018) on these ‘emaciated’ beggar figurines as actual representations of people suffering from skeletal tuberculosis.
See the specific figurative senses at: TLL s.v. colluvio III, 1666, 41–57; OLD s.v. colluviēs 3b: “applied to a conglomeration of worthless people.”
See Cic. Vat. 23 (in conluvione Drusi), Sest. 15 (Gabinius’ origins: ex omnium scelerum conluvione natus), Har. 55 (P. Clodius imagining the “pollution and subversion of the community” [conluvionem ... eversionem civitatis] when speaking on the rostra). Cf. Cic. Sen. 84 on death as an escape “from this crowd and muck” (ex hac turba et conluvione).
See Livy, 26.40.14–18, 27.12.4–5.
Livy, 26.40.17–18: quattuor milia hominum erant, mixti ex omni conluvione exsules obaerati capitalia ausi plerique cum in ciuitatibus suis ac sub legibus uixerant, et postquam eos ex uariis causis fortuna similis conglobauerat Agathyrnam per latrocinia ac rapinam tolerantes uitam. hos neque relinquere Laeuinus in insula tum primum noua pace coalescente uelut materiam nouandis rebus satis tutum ratus est, et Reginis usui futuri erant ad populandum Bruttium agrum adsuetam latrociniis quaerentibus manum. Text: Conway and Johnson (1953).
The power of displacement ascribed to the consul by Livy’s choice of verbs (transvexit, locatum erat, traducta) is entirely absent in Polybius’ (9.27.11) treatment of the episode. His consul “persuaded” (ἔπεισεν) the men to “withdraw” (or, even, “emigrate”: ἐκχωρεῖν, LSJ s.v. A) to Italy by offering them specific material incentives: pledges of security for their persons (this may have had real consequences in the midst of a warzone where enslavement was always an imminent threat); pay (or rations: μέτρημα) from the Rhegians and pillage from the Bruttians—all of which are tellingly absent from Livy’s account and have not been acknowledged by scholars. Walbank (1967, p. 161) cites Livy’s account without drawing any contrast or comparison; Prag (2007, p. 77), also citing Livy, only categorises the men in pragmatic terms as auxilia externa, seemingly eliding the different types of men, including the Roman deserters, whom Livy lists. Cf. Isayev (2017a, p. 283), who rightly places them in the broader context of coerced movement during the Second Punic War. Translators of Polybius also supply a noun for the men where none is provided in the text, ostensibly under the influence of Livy’s account: Schuckburgh (1962, II.587): “refugees”; Walbank and Habicht’s revision of Paton’s (2011) translation: “fugitives”. Compare the very faithful translation of Drexler (1961, I.672) who refrains from characterising the men as anything other than “<der aus Agathyrna Vertriebenen>” (“those expelled from Agathyrna”: his additions are carefully indicated by the brackets) and impersonally as “sie” (“them”).
Res novae was a particularly potent catch-phrase in late Republican political language, for which see: Romano (2006a, 2006b); McGushin (1977, p. 173), “The phrase res novae may have formed part of the traditional vocabulary of historiography ... but it was particularly prevalent in the late Republic”; in Greek and Roman historiography, specifically Sallust and Tacitus: Spielberg (2017); more generally, as an expression of ‘revolution’: Finley (1986, pp. 49–50).
For similar usage, see Cic. Att. 9.10.7 = SB 177 (March 18, 49 BCE), where Cicero quotes a letter of Atticus’ in which he calls ruling Rome with Caesar (during the civil war) “the future sink of iniquity” (futura colluvie).
See: Cic. Att. 1.16.11 = SB 16 (July, 61 BCE): Cicero wrote that his position with the “filth and dregs of the city” (sordem urbis et faecem) had much improved, while also describing them a few lines later as, “that public-meeting attending leach on the treasury, wretched and starving rabble” (illa contionalis hirudo aerari, misera ac ieiuna plebecula). Cic. Q. Fratr. 2.5.3 = SB 9 (March, 56 BCE): Pompey had become unpopular “among that most vicious and lowest swill of the people” (apud perditissimam illam atque infimam faecem populi); Cic. Pis. 9 (55 BCE): Cicero complains that under Piso the collegia had been reinstated and that innumerable new ones arose out of “all the servile dregs of the city” (ex omni faece urbis ac servitio). See also Cic. Fam. 7.32.2 = SB 113 (February or March 50? BCE).
See above note for these collocations.
See, for example: Cic. Leg. Agr. 2.13 for his derogatory characterisation of Rullus’ contio speech; 2.19 for his explicit critique of Rullus’ earlier claim (in a contio) to be nobilis with Jewell (2018, p. 270); 2.79 for his quotation of an earlier moment, likely at a senate meeting, where he questioned Rullus. Cf. Manuwald (2018, pp. 150–51, 341, 357) for Rullus’ senatorial oratory; Morstein-Marx (2004, pp. 248–53) on the contional audience’s reliance on the contio as a source of ‘information’ about what was said in senate meetings.
Cic. Leg. Agr. 2.70: Et nimirum illud est, quod ab hoc tribuno plebis dictum est in senatu, urbanam plebem nimium in re publica posse; exhauriendam esse; hoc enim est usus, quasi de aliqua sentina ac non de optimorum civium genere loqueretur.
On this ‘revelatory’ strategy, see Morstein-Marx (2004, pp. 243–58). For analyses of the political exploitation of the perceived elitist nature of Mitt Romney’s (Landler 2012) and Hillary Clinton’s (Chozick 2016) comments to stoke ‘populist’ ire for electoral gain, see, for example, White (2016, p. 274) and Fuchsman (2017, pp. 37–38).
Note that I translate the term sentina in different ways throughout this paper, namely to demonstrate its capacious and indeterminate quality, encompassing various kinds of liquid waste, from bilge water in a ship to dregs, filth, scum, wastewater, and sewerage. Thus, I follow the figurative possibilities offered by OLD s.v. 2: “the scum or dregs of society”, rather than the more literal reading of others, such as Ramsey (2007: ad loc.), who referring to its use at Sall. Cat. 37.5, translates it as “bilge of a ship”. Cf. McGushin (1977: ad loc.), who allows for the possibility that “it is often used as an alternative to colluvies, to mean filth or dregs.”
Sall. Cat. 37.1: Neque solum illis aliena mens erat, qui conscii coniurationis fuerant, sed omnino cuncta plebes novarum rerum studio Catilinae incepta probabat.
Sall. Cat. 37.5: Primum omnium, qui ubique probro atque petulantia maxume praestabant, item alii per dedecora patrimoniis amissis, postremo omnes, quos flagitium aut facinus domo expulerat, ii Romam sicut in sentinam confluxerant.
Cic. Cat. 1.12: sin tu, quod te iam dudum hortor, exieris, exhaurietur ex urbe tuorum comitum magna et perniciosa sentina rei publicae.
Cic. Cat. 2.7: O fortunatam rem publicam, si quidem hanc sentinam urbis eiecerit! Uno me hercule Catilina exhausto levata mihi et recreata res publica videtur. Cf. Morstein-Marx (2004, p. 219 n.67), “The audience must have appreciated Cicero’s application to Catiline’s fancy followers of an insulting phrase that the urban plebs rightly suspected was often used of them.”
See Rotondi (1912, p. 386); Gruen (1974, pp. 396–97); Flach (1990, pp. 76–78). The failure of these bills also demonstrates that while colonisation served some elite aims, it could be perceived as a threat to elite, landed interests (i.e., through land distribution) and hence these initiatives were often thwarted or saw success more because of senatorial and equestrian opposition or support, than popular opposition or support. See Mouritsen (2017, pp. 113, 149) on this point.
Cic. Att. 1.19.4 = SB 19: populo autem Pompeioque (nam id quoque volebam) satis faciebam emptione, qua constituta diligenter et sentinam urbis exhauriri et Italiae solitudinem frequentari posse arbitrabar. Translation modified from Shackleton Bailey’s (1965). On this letter see, especially, Morstein-Marx (2004, pp. 210–12).
On the disjunction between Cicero’s public and private statements on this matter, see Jonkers (1963, pp. 110–11); Shackleton Bailey (1965, p. 337); and Morstein-Marx (2004, pp. 211–12, 253). Cf. De Ste. Croix (1981, p. 624 n.14), “It is interesting to see how Cicero, in a speech delivered to the populace in a contio, could pretend to be shocked when recalling how his opponent, Rullus, had referred to the urban plebs...”.
Cic. Att.1.21.6 = SB 21: mention of Atticus’ previous correspondence about the agrarian law (quod de agraria lege scribis) marks the beginning of the discussion. Although the remark directly bears on the matter of jurors taking bribes, one could argue that Cicero here draws on the faex metaphor because of its more regular application to the plebs urbana.
Suet. Jul. 42: octoginta autem ciuium milibus in transmarinas colonias distributis, ut exhaustae quoque urbis frequentia suppeteret, sanxit, ne quis ciuis maior annis uiginti minorue †decem, qui sacramento non teneretur, plus triennio continuo Italia abesset, neu qui senatoris filius nisi contubernalis aut comes magistratus peregre proficisceretur. Text: Ihm (1908). On this and earlier measures restricting movement, see Isayev (2017a, p. 47).
Dio, 38.1.1, 38.1.3: ... ὁ Καῖσαρ τὸ σύμπαν θεραπεῦσαι πλῆθος ἠθέλησεν, ὅπως σφᾶς ἔτι καὶ μᾶλλον σφετερίσηται. ...  τό τε γὰρ πλῆθος τῶν πολιτῶν ὑπέρογκον ὄν, ἀφ’ οὗπερ καὶ τὰ μάλιστα ἐστασίαζον, πρός τε τὰ ἔργα καὶ πρὸς γεωργίας ἐτρέπετο, καὶ τὰ πλεῖστα τῆς Ἰταλίας ἠρημωμένα αὖθις συνῳκίζετο, ὥστε μὴ μόνον τοὺς ἐν ταῖς στρατείαις τεταλαιπωρημένους ἀλλὰ καὶ τοὺς ἄλλους ἅπαντας διαρκῆ τὴν τροφὴν ἔχειν ... Text and trans. Cary (1914) modified.
Suet. Aug. 4: ... agrum Campanum plebi Iulia lege divisit.
Vell. Pat. 2.44.4: In hoc consulatu Caesar legem tulit, ut ager Campanus plebei divideretur, suasore legis Pompeio. Ita circiter viginti milia civium eo deducta ... .
App. B Civ. 2.10. On Caesar’s colonists settled at Capua under a lex Iulia, see also Caes. B Civ. 1.14.4.
Plut. Pomp. 47.3, Caes. 14.1, Cat. min. 31.4.
Yavetz (1983, pp. 142–43) specifically dismisses a straightforward reading of Dio’s reported social reasons for Caesar’s colonies: “in an age of power politics such a ‘naïve’ intention may not be acceptable.” Yet we should be cautious about the true power of these client connections. One of the first places that Pompey’s forces levied troops was from among Caesar’s very own colonists at Capua, as told in his own words at Caes. B Civ. 1.14.4. Cf. Gruen’s (1974, pp. 393–404) reading of the general social purposes of agrarian legislation in this period, which I largely follow. On clientela, see most recently Mouritsen (2017, pp. 94–95), who seriously doubts that those from the lowest socio-economic strata of society had direct access to these networks.
We do, however, hear about the pejorative character of the colonists whom Mark Antony had settled in Campania alongside Caesar’s colonists under a lex agraria of June 44 BCE, but only in the context of severe invective and thus needs to be read with caution: see Cic. Phil. 2.101 (mimes) and Phil.8.26 (actors, gamblers, pimps and two notorious centurions, Cafo and Saxa) with Ramsey (2003, p. 310).
Cf. Brunt’s (1971, pp. 234–61) treatment. For example at pp. 256–57, contra Vittinghoff (1951, pp. 1301–2), he prefers to see the colonists sent to Buthrotum as the rural plebs, since they are described by Cicero (Att. 16.16c.2 = SB 407C) as agrarii and “one can hardly believe that many urban dwellers from Rome wished to become peasants in Epirus.” Note, however, that some doubt remains, since Cicero then describes the colonists twice as “land seekers” (agripetas) at Cic. Att. 15.29.3 = SB 408 and 16.1.2 = SB 409. Cf. Strabo 7.7.5, who describes them only as “Roman colonists” (ἐποίκους ... Ῥωμαίους).
Pliny, NH 3.3.12: Urso quae Genetiva Urbanorum.
For the right to hold magistracies, see lex Coloniae Genetivae Iuliae 18 = Coles (2017) L2. For freed status as a protected category in the holding of magistracies, see lex Coloniae Genetivae Iuliae 105 in Crawford (1996, pp. 409–10) = Coles (2017) L3. These magistrates may have even held a limited form of imperium, as a new fragment of the Urso charter seems to attest: Coles (2017, p. 198).
On the ‘proletarianisation’ of the army, once thought to have begun in the second century BCE, see Gabba (1976), and more recently, De Ligt (2007). However, see now De Ligt (2012, pp. 175, 184–85) and Keaveney (2007, pp. 23–28) who rightly cast doubts on speaking of anything more than an increase in the number of recruits from the proletarii after Marius opened up recruitment from the capite censi in 107. On the situation just after the Second Punic War, see Erdkamp (2011, pp. 115–17). More generally on veterans as colonists, see Broadhead (2007), and specifically on Caesar’s veteran colonists, Keppie (1983).
The implications of such intersectionality are under explored in the scholarship, but for brief mentions, such as Erdkamp (2011, p. 113); Cf. Keaveney’s (2007, p. 25) reservations. The evidence gathered by Phang (2008, pp. 77–78, 224, 271) for recruitment standards and the stereotypes attached to soldiers from the plebs urbana during the imperial period demonstrates the potential for this approach. See also De Ligt (2004, pp. 743–44) on the reasons why the ‘poor’ may not have started to join the army in greater numbers until land distribution became tied to service under Marius in 107 BCE, since the stipendium was so low, the cost of military outfitting so high, and the odds of war booty so variable from war to war.
Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 1.89.1: he rejects the characterisation of early Rome as a “refuge for barbarians and fugitives and homeless people” (βαρβάρων καὶ δραπετῶν καὶ ἀνεστίων ἀνθρώπων καταφυγὴν). Cf. Plutarch’s (Rom. 9.3) characterisation, which is even more extreme and unapologetic than Livy’s.
The same issue arises a little later in Dionysius’ narrative: in his telling (Ant. Rom. 2.62.3–4), Numa implemented land distribution to deal with the problem of the “the homeless and wandering poor” (τοῦτο ἀνέστιον καὶ πτωχὸν ἀλώμενον), who had not been provided for by Romulus, and were on the brink of revolution (νεωτερίζειν ἑτοιμότατον).
Academic context: Lee-Stecum (2008, p. 75). Opinion piece: Bazelon (2015). See also Stem (2007, p. 451), paraphrasing with “fresh start”. For the pejorative reading see: Cornell (2001, p. 51 n.42), “Most translations miss the pejorative sense of novae res, which is surely meant here”; Dench (2005, p. 19) “His mob is potentially revolutionary in its eagerness or hunger for ‘new things’: it reminds us of his treatment of the popular element in the work as a whole, an intrinsic part of what Rome is, but prone to disputes with the upper classes and to particular character traits”. See also Ayer (2013, pp. 88–89). On res novae see above n.33.
Beard in Begley’s (2015) interview; Beard’s (2015a) op-ed in The Wall Street Journal. See also Beard (2015b) in The Guardian. Compare (Padilla Peralta’s (forthcoming) treatment of the asylum in this volume. The fact that scholars such as Van Dommelen (1997, 1998, pp. 15–33) and De Angelis (1998) have already shown how the early scholarship and archaeology of Greek and Roman colonisation was heavily influenced by the colonial project of the imperial powers in which these disciplines were formed—and vice versa by Terrenato (2005)—only further underlines the risks involved when attempting to invoke an ancient phenomenon as a model for contemporary issues.
See, for example, Ogilvie (1965, pp. 62–63); Cornell (2001, p. 51); and Lee-Stecum (2008, pp. 69–70). On this method of city foundation in the Greek world, see: Dougherty (1993, pp. 16–18) on the literary record; Rigsby (1996, pp. 575–77) on asylia as a Greek influence on Roman articulations of what was originally called inter duos lucos, not asylum. On Greek exile (individual and collective), see more recently, Garland (2014); Gray (2015, 2018) in this volume.
Livy, 1.6.3: Et supererat multitudo Albanorum Latinorumque; ad id pastores quoque accesserant.
Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 1.85–86; note that he applies the term apoikia multiple times to Rome at 1.86.1–2.
Thus, I am building on the suggestion made by Isayev (2017b, p. 89) that “The refugee story of Aeneas and that of Romulus’ asylum are, equally, versions of foundation myths with similar undertones of displacement. Through them, Rome could be presented as an open city that was welcoming to refugees. At their most basic, however, these are narratives of colonization.”
Cf. Stem (2007, p. 450), “Misrepresentation is thus presented as inherent to the very process by which a city’s first citizens become citizens, and Livy is not being critical of these dissimulating city-founders, but simply characterizing them as doing what city-founders do in order to establish the population of their cities. The necessity that a city survive its earliest years inherently justifies a certain amount of pretense in securing that survival.”
Cic. Leg. Agr. 2.70: Alterum genus agrorum propter sterilitatem incultum, propter pestilentiam vastum atque desertum emetur ab iis, qui eos vident sibi esse, si non vendiderint, relinquendos. Et nimirum illud est, quod ab hoc tribuno plebis dictum est in senatu, urbanam plebem nimium in re publica posse; exhauriendam esse.
Cic. Leg. Agr. 2.71: Vos vero, Quirites, si me audire vultis, retinete istam possessionem gratiae, libertatis, suffragiorum, dignitatis, urbis, fori, ludorum, festorum dierum, ceterorum omnium commodorum, nisi forte mavultis relictis his rebus atque hac luce rei publicae in Sipontina siccitate aut in Salpinorum pestilentiae finibus Rullo duce collocari.
Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 4.24.8: τὸ δὲ μιαρὸν καὶ ἀκάθαρτον φῦλον ἐκβαλοῦσιν ἐκ τῆς πόλεως, εὐπρεπὲς ὄνομα τῷ πράγματι τιθέντες, ἀποικίαν.
See Gabba (1991, pp. 190–216) on Dionysius’ place as a Greek in Rome and his Augustan context. On this passage, see specifically p. 210, though he offers no comment on Dionysius’ focus on colonies. Cornell (1991, p. 62) also ignores the colonial aspect to the passage, instead pointing to the problem posed by Dionysius’ status as a non-citizen (who, in his view, wanted to be a Roman citizen) and his disparagement of freed Roman citizens as a prime example of “status dissonance”.
Suet. Aug. 40.3: Magni praeterea existimans sincerum atque ab omni colluvione peregrini ac servilis sanguinis incorruptum servare populum.
Cf. Yavetz (1983, p. 148), who alone seems to rightly note that Dionysius’ statement “may reflect the prevailing atmosphere [i.e. Caesar’s colonisation programme] ... We know who gained from it. Were there also victims?”. For Yavetz, however, the victims were people like Atticus, who almost lost his land in Buthrotum as a result of one of Caesar’s colonial foundations; no mention is made of the plebs or that Dionysius’ polemic exclusively refers to freedmen. Purcell (1994, p. 655), referring to Rullus’ plan in 63 BCE, but commenting on freedmen, views the ability for freedmen to join them in a benevolent light: “it was generous but prudent to allow freedmen to take part in them.” Yet considering statements like Dionysius’ and the long history of the practice, it is difficult to see the inclusion of freedmen as intended to be generous, when it served other elite aims.
SIG3 543, ll.31–33: καὶ οἱ Ῥωμαῖ|οί εἰσιν, οἳ καὶ τοὺς οἰκέτας ὅταν ἐλευθερώσωσιν, προσδεχόμενοι εἰς τὸ πολίτευμα καὶ τῶν ἀρχαίων με|[ταδι]δόντες.
Pelgrom (2013, p. 81 n.63) appears to be the only exception. Most scholars focus on the citizenship of these freedmen, rather than their role as colonists: Masi Doria (1993, pp. 232–33); Ando (1999, p. 19); Klees (2002); Weiler (2003, pp. 172–75); Erdkamp (2011, p. 139). On the number of colonies (70) as a symbolic number designed to recall the number of cities founded by Alexander the Great: Dench (2003, pp. 294–95); as an illustration of the permeability of Roman citizenship: Dench (2005, pp. 94–95). All scholars appear to dismiss Philip V’s claim in the same inscription that freedmen also became magistrates, most recently Mouritsen (2011, p. 66 n.5), and the inscription is not cited in Coles’ (2017) recent analysis. To be sure, the proposed reading of με|[ταδι]δόντες is not certain. Still, if the reading is correct, it is significant that such an idea could be circulating at this time and that Philip would or could even make such a claim in 214. Even if it was not actually happening in practice, he deemed it credible enough to use as an admonitory example for the Larisans.
See, for example, comparisons between Romulus/Remus and Batman/Fawkner in early histories of Melbourne and the colony of Victoria at McCombie (1858, p. 18) and Westgarth (1864, p. 27). For further discussion, see Davison (1978, p. 241); Davison (1990, p. 99); Carter (2003, p. 17) and Ferguson (2004). For Governor Arthur Phillip as the “Romulus of the Southern Pole”, see Smith (1845, p. 23), originally published in the Edinburgh Review of 1803.
See Delane (1848, p. 4). The Times editorial does not name Romulus, but in yet another striking passage, the editor refers specifically to Livy: “Honest labourers, industrious mechanics, helpless orphans, desolate foundlings, ragged ragamuffins, all to the same capacious receptacle [sc. the colonies]! It must, however, be said, that colonies and new states, since the beginning of the world, have been composed of much the same doubtful materials. If Livy tells true, the original material of Rome was not purely heroic; and the Mediterranean colonies were founded by pirates, by outcasts, by starved-out populations, or by the offspring of adultery and concubinage. The best will generally stay at home.”
Cf. nn.112–114 for the discourse which engaged with the probable certainty about the nature of Romulus’ asylum (“We ourselves are inclined to believe”, “if Livy tells true...”; “Romulus’ asylum may have been...”).
Compare a former slave’s re-appropriation of Romulus and Remus in Emeric (Bergeaud’s ( 2015) novel, Stella, which narrates the history of the Haitian slave revolution. Note, however, (Bergeaud’s ( 2015, p. 17) acute—and prescient—awareness of the problems of drawing any direct analogy: “The sons of the African woman—whom we introduce in this chapter under the names of Romulus and Remus, less with the thought of establishing an analogy with these men and the historic twins and more because they were brothers ...”. On the use of the Roman brothers as models and sources of metadiscourse in this novel, see Ndiaye (2009, p. 8) and Daut (2015)—although the novel remains to be analysed in the field of Classics. On the other end of the spectrum, compare Finaldi (2009, pp. 262–72) for the problematic role of classicism in Italian colonialism, as well as Dench (2005, pp. 10–11) for Italian and South African imperialist and racist appropriations of the ‘open’ or ‘unifying’ example of Rome.
PaceArneil (2017, pp. 23–24), whose study problematically takes the “domestic dimension” of Greek and Roman colonisation as a direct precedent for modern external colonies with domestic aims without corroborating her claim to continuity between the ancient and modern colony; nor does her study grasp how the 19th century invocations of Greek and Roman colonisation served as justifications for their establishment of European penal colonies.
For sceptical, yet judicious views, see MacKendrick (1954); Ogilvie (1965, pp. 392, 683); Brunt (1971); Càssola (1988). Oakley specifically finds the rationalisations for two colonies in Table 1 problematic, if not implausible. On Cales: Oakley (1998, p. 583), “One should not imagine that L. had any good evidence for the Roman motivation which he reports in this section.” On Luceria: Oakley (2005, p. 317) again rightly rejects readings that would take this “as an authentic record of the feeling of the fourth-century Romans”. For more positive views, that take these accounts as possessing some relation to the real historical period they purport to describe, see Cornell (1991, pp. 58–59); Patterson (2006, p. 197); and Bradley (2006, pp. 163–64, 169–71), who revive and refine an older approach represented in continental scholarship by Pais (1931, pp. 109–30); Bernardi (1946); and Tibiletti (1950). For an overview of this broader tradition, especially in the Italian scholarship of the twentieth century, see Pelgrom and Stek (2014, pp. 26–29).
Note that his account is confused, since he already records Velitrae’s foundation at Ant. Rom. 6.43, so too Livy 2.31. However, Livy (2.34) brings some clarity, whereby the Romans sent out more colonists to Velitrae and founded a new colony at Norba at the same time that the plague was affecting the Volscians.
Gargola (1995, pp. 64–67, 213 nn.69–70) with citations of nomen dare at Livy 1.11.4, 10.21.10, 34.42.6; Cic. Dom. 78 (for Latin colonies); Festus p.13L (those who had given their names for the colonies were called adscripti). Along with Cic. Caec. 98 (cited at n.100), Sen. Helv. 7.7 (libentes nomina dabant) particularly suggests the “willing” disposition of colonists—and refers specifically to overseas colonies (trans maria); that Seneca had to qualify the colonists’ act of “giving their names” as “willing”, may actually suggest that this was not the norm. On the other hand, note that Gargola omits a key reference at Livy 3.1.6, in which the shortfall of colonists “giving their names” (nomina dare) did not result in compulsion by lot, but rather the addition of local non-citizens to the colony—perhaps suggesting that compulsion was not the norm.
We might also view the numerous reports of requests for supplementary colonists to join pre-existing Latin colonies, beginning in 206, as similarly indicative of high rates of attrition in the colonies. So too the controversy over the Ferentinates claiming Roman citizenship in 195 may have arisen because they were included in a Roman citizen colony due to a shortfall of Roman citizen recruits, as cogently argued by Piper (1987).
In 206 BCE the fear of ‘vacancy’ is expressed by Placentia and Cremona at Livy 28.11.11 (infrequentes se urbes, agrum vastum ac desertum habere). In 177 BCE, the ‘vacancy’ of the towns and fields is linked to their inability to furnish soldiers for Rome at Livy 41.8.7 (ut deserta oppida, deserti agri nullum militem dare possint).
See Table 1.
Gaius, Inst. 1.131: Olim quoque, quo tempore populus Romanus in latinas regiones colonias deducebat, qui iussu parentis in coloniam latinam nomen dedissent, desinebant in potestate parentis esse, quia efficerentur alterius civitatis cives. The passage presents several problems which cannot be dealt with here, but here at least we should note the clear potential for (parental) coercion in the service of colonial foundation.
For the legislative and magisterial measures, Livy’s language is fairly clear. Two instances involving colonists from Placentia and Cremona saw senatus consulta leading to consular edicta: first in 206 BCE at Livy 28.11.11 (consules ex senatus consulto edixerunt), and again in 198, when consular coercion continued to be used: 32.26.3 (cogendis redire in colonias). Later, in 187, a praetorian edict, prompted by a senatus consultum is implied at Livy 39.3.5. Then in 177 again we encounter a senatus consultum leading to a consular edict and lex, as well as a further senatus consultum regulating manumission for the purposes of citizenship at Livy 41.9.9–11: legem dein de sociis C. Claudius tulit <ex> senatus consulto et edixit. ...  ad legem et edictum consulis senatus consultum adiectum est, ...
See above n.58.
As well suggested by Jehne (1987, p. 296). However, he struggles to rationalise the lack of any opposition to the colonies from the plebs urbana, since they had expressed such antipathy for Rullus’ proposal, only suggesting that the mere lack of compulsion was sufficient for Caesar’s initiative to go unopposed. This ignores, of course, a whole host of factors that might play into plebeian enthusiasm.
For example, in Cicero’s extended correspondence (Att. 16.16a-d = SB 407a-d, 15.29 = SB 408, 16.1 = SB 409) detailing his advocacy on Atticus’ behalf against Caesar’s foundation of a colony at Buthrotum (Butrint, Albania), there is no hint about the process of volunteering or conscripting colonists. Yet the fact that they are twice described as agripetas may indicate some volition. See also, Sen. Helv. 7.7, cited above at n.134 for his characterisation of transmarine colonists as “willing” (libentes). Yet Seneca, along with Cicero’s testimony, only constitute the opinions of elite non-colonists and they might be expected to express only a positive account of the colonists’ volition. So, while Moatti (1993, p. 13) may call this a legal fiction (“Le volontariat n’était parfois qu’une fiction juridique.”), I would rather call it an ‘elite fiction’.
Suet. Caes. 43.1. Building on an implied point made by Brunt (1971, p. 257) that “by fixing a maximum number of corn-recipients Caesar was obviously doing something to prevent its future increase” and Garnsey’s (1988, p. 217) passing, but adroit, reference to “Caesar’s draconian solutions (a drastic reduction of the list of recipients coupled with the dispatch of colonies abroad)”. For further discussion, though again not concerned with the direct causal connection between Caesar’s grain reforms and colonial programme, see Prell (1997, pp. 281–84), who only characterises Caesar’s plan (p. 252) as state sponsored “mass migration” (“Massenabwanderung”).
See Suet. Aug. 42.2 with Mouritsen’s (2011, pp. 121–22) judicious discussion. Slave owners had apparently begun to manumit their slaves after Clodius’ introduction of the free grain dole to citizens in 58 BCE such that their freedmen could give their share to their former masters: Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 4.24.5; Dio, 39.24.1.
PaceBillows (2009, p. 242), “He did this [sc. cut the grain dole] in part by removing from the list men who had no real need for free grain from the state, but above all thanks to his colonization programme.” We do not know precisely when these two policies were enacted during Caesar’s dictatorship, but the fact that most of Caesar’s colonies were not yet founded at the time of his death (e.g., Buthrotum) favours my argument for his grain policy preceding his colonisation programme.
For the mobility facilitated by the Mediterranean in relation to colonies, see Horden and Purcell (2000, pp. 395–400), especially at p. 396: “The Mediterranean colony is a direct manifestation of the maritime koine: it is always part of a seaborne network, a bridgehead of the easily navigable world in a different social medium ...”. See also now on sea routes, Isayev (2017a, pp. 74–78, 214).
Cic. Att. 16.16a.3 = SB 407A (July 4 or 5): cum autem mare transissent, curaturum se ut in alium agrum deducerentur. Emphasis mine.
Granted, many had described Roman colonisation as a form of ‘migration’ before Scheidel, most prominently, Brunt (1971) and Hopkins (1978), who frequently call movements of Roman citizens due to colonisation either “mass migration” or “mass emigration”; but none had done so in Scheidel’s systematic fashion and with his focus on mobility.
Cic. Att. 14.9.1 = SB 363 (Puteoli, April 17, 44 BCE): ... non solum inquilini sed mures etiam migraverunt. Translation my own.
For these conditions, see Scobie (1986), but note that he often takes the rhetoric of the elite sources at face value about the filthy conditions of Rome—and in some cases we should; however, see the objections of Laurence (1997, pp. 10–14) and Courrier (2014, pp. 104–15) who also draw attention to Rome’s important public works as a counterbalance. For followers of Scobie’s bleak ‘dystopian’ portrait, see Scheidel (2003) and, specifically on the Republican period, Davies (2012), whose study shows that the majority of the major improvements in sewerage works only came with the breakdown of the Republic, and therefore, for our purposes, only then would Rome have been a cleaner place with less sentina, faex, and conluvio from which to draw analogies to her citizens. For a stimulating analysis of the intersection of living conditions, occupations connected to dirt or other pollution, and discourses about this in ancient Greek contexts, see Lindenlauf (2004).
Beyond the material factors considered below, one might also consider: the colonists’ ancestral connection to the city and family tombs (How many generations had lived and died in the city?); the number of dependents in a prospective colonist’s familia (Would the amount of land offered support the size of the familia?); the issue of capital, debts, or credit tied up with one’s physical presence in the city; gender (Did sui iuris women and their familiae join colonies?); occupation (Could their business find a market in the colony and its surrounding trade networks?); health and age (Were they able to travel and withstand the challenges of colonial foundation?).
Livy 40.37–38: 150,000 denarii and the (unspecified) costs of travel were covered. On this, Briscoe (2008, p. 507) rightly underscores how this was a “paltry sum” for such a large population and Walsh (1996, p. 159) concedes that “the relatively small sum indicates that it covered mere short-term subsistence rather than materials for building.” Cf. Barzanò (1995, pp. 187–88). See also Livy, 40.41.3–5: for the deportation of an additional 7000 in the summer of that year by boat and land. On this episode more generally, see Salmon (1967, pp. 310–11); Barzanò (1995); Luisi (1995); Patterson (1988, pp. 125–27) and (2013, pp. 16–28); Torelli (2002, pp. 70–71, 130–32); Pina Polo (2004, pp. 219–23) and Pina Polo (2006, pp. 185–88); Boatwright (2015, p. 127); Scopacasa (2015, pp. 156–57); Isayev (2017a, pp. 20, 181). The number of Apuani is debated. 100,000, including women and children: Briscoe (2008, p. 507); 40,000 including women and children: Roselaar (2010, p. 314 n.71). Cf. Patterson (2013, pp. 24–25).
Walsh (1996, p. 159) notes in light of the absence of any mention of captives and booty that “the deportation takes on the complexion of the foundation of a colony”. But as Briscoe (2008, p. 507) points out, colonies always had three commissioners, such that this may rather resemble a viritane allotment of land. In any case, the language chosen by Livy also recalls colonial foundations: 40.38.2 (deducere); 40.38.7 (agro dividendo dandoque iidem). Hence Barigazzi (1991, p. 66) calls the Apuanian example “a middle way between deportation and colonisation” (“una via di mezzo fra la deportazione e la colonizzazione”).
Thus pace Gardner (2009, p. 64), “Among the overseas colonists there were, in addition to veterans, civilians (including freedmen, who were allowed to hold office in some colonies), not only urban proletarians but probably also Italian peasants, people for whom, without such state-organized assistance, emigration would hitherto have been unattractive or impractical.” My emphasis.
Cic. Att. 15.29.3 = SB 408: agripetas eiectos a Buthrotiis; Att. 16.1.2 = SB 409: agripetas Buthroti concisos.
After Tibiletti (1950, p. 222): Thurii Copia (193 BCE): Livy 35.9.8 (20 iugera: pedites; 40: equites); Vibo Valentia (192 BCE): 35.40.6 (15 iugera: pedites; 30 iugera: equites); Bononia (189 BCE): 37.57.8 (70 iugera: equites; 50: ceteri); Aquileia (181 BCE): 40.34.2 (50 iugera: pedites; 100 iugera: centuriones; 140 iugera: equites). On this issue (but without the data), see Pelgrom (2008, pp. 360–61). The shift in Livy’s reporting may reflect either a real change in land distribution practices or simply a change in his sources; Pelgrom prefers the former option, seemingly because it aligns with the archaeological survey evidence. Cf. Tibiletti (1950, pp. 221–25). See also Walbank (1997, p. 105) on these inequalities at Corinth; Hillard and Beness (2015, pp. 138–40) on plot sizes at Aquileia.
The archaeology of the Caesarian colonies is too extensive to detail here and much works remains to be done on the archaeology of the non-elite, rather than public buildings, especially material indicators of wealth (e.g., pottery and other domestic finds). Some starting points: Keppie (1983, pp. 114–22, 127–33) on colonial structures from Caesarian and Augustan foundations; Bergemann (1998, pp. 16–73) and Hanse (2011) on Buthrotum; Walbank (1997) emphasises the difficulties of early colonial life at Corinth. The papers collected by Friesen et al. (2014) on Corinth also offer some insights, especially Sanders (2014, pp. 116–20), who specifically tackles the issue of non-elites, their invisibility, and subsistence in the early colony; and also James (2014, pp. 33–36) on the continuous use of humble cooking wares between the pre-Roman and Roman periods. Osgood (2006, p. 160) interestingly suggests that Strabo’s (8.6.23) story about the freedmen digging up treasure from the old tombs of Corinth might be “perhaps literally true”. But even if this is an invention created out of anti-freedman bias, it suggests the lengths that contemporaries believed these freedmen would go to in order to flourish at the colony.
|Characterisation of Displacement||Focaliser||Source|
|Circeii and Signia||Regal period||Unburdening |
(King Tarquinius Superbus)
|Velitrae||494||Safety valve |
|Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 6.43.1|
(πᾶσι τοῖς πολλοῖς καὶ πένησι ... ἀπελαυνομένοις τῆς πατρίδος)
|Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 9.59.2.|
|Unnamed (proposed site in Volscian territory)||395||Safety valve |
(multiplex seditio cuius leniendae causa coloniam)
Banishment (relegari plebem; ἐκβολὴν)
Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 7.14.4.
(haud procul seditione res erat ... leniendae causa)
(ut beneficio praevenirent desiderium plebis)
(relegandis tam procul ab domo civibus)
|Sora and Alba Fucens||300||Unburdening (exonerata) |
(in stationem se prope perpetuam infestae regionis, non in agros mitti rebantur)
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