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Greek and Roman Concepts of Citizenship and Government

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Greek and Roman Concepts of Citizenship and Government
Joe Wickenden, Sarah Dowling, Ginger Snyder, Leone Hansen
HIS/341
October 27, 2014
Joel Getz

Greek and Roman Concepts of Citizenship and Government The definition of citizenship in Greek and Roman cultures can be described much differently than the current democratic definition of contemporary nations. The Roman Empire differed from the Athenian Amphictyony and the Assyrian Empire as well as the sunder later emperors such as Vespasian. There were also structural problems within the government of the Roman Empire. This paper will explore the models of government and citizenship that Ancient Roman and Greek peoples employed along with how well they worked.
Citizenship in ancient Rome was a privileged legal status granted only to un-slaved individuals with respect to laws, property, and governance (Jahnige, 2002). In the Roman Republic as well as later in the Empire, citizenship could be divided into several categories; a male Roman citizen, Roman women, Client state, Freedmen, and slaves; each having their own freedoms that came with their citizenship. Latin Rights were given by the Romans which was an intermediate between full Roman citizenship and non-citizenship's (2002). In other words, the Latin right was the ticket to obtaining full-fledged Roman citizenship. In the days of the Republic, those holding the Latin right had most of the liberties of citizens except the right to vote. Furthermore, only citizens could run for office in Rome and serve in the Roman army. For the mass of the population, though, the formal meaning of citizenship symbolized being part of the empire. This was instrumental in foreign policy, allowing rulers to incorporate new territories into the empire under the incentive of improved standing. The Romans developed a type of government that would be copied by countries for

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