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As a native of Etruria, Tarquin vowed the erection, upon the Capitoline, of a temple to Jupiter, Juno, and Minerva, the three deities who were worshiped together in every Etruscan city, and for this purpose he cleared away from that mountain all the holy places of the Sabine gods. The temple was built by his son. The wars of Tarquin against the Sabines, Latins, and Etruscans were usually victorious, and added largely to the population of Rome. From the noblest of the conquered peoples he formed three new half-tribes of fifty "houses” each, which he joined to the three old tribes of Ramnes, Tities, and Luceres, while he increased the number of Vestal Virgins from four to six, that each race might be equally represented. Tarquin was murdered by hired agents of the sons of Ancus Martius, who hoped thus to secure for themselves the throne of their father. But the Roman monarchy was strictly elective, not hereditary; their crime failed of its purpose, and Servius Tullius, an Etruscan general, and son-in-law of the murdered king, obtained the crown.
19. He made radical changes in the constitution, by giving to every free Roman the right of suffrage, though all offices in the government were still held by the nobles. The Greek cities of southern Italy were, at the same time, changing from aristocratic to popular forms of government, and there are many signs of Greek influence in Latium and Rome. The new popular assembly, Comitia Centuria' ta, was so called from the “ centuries” in which the entire citizen-soldiery was enrolled. Wealth now acquired in Rome something of the power which had hitherto been reserved for rank. Every man who held property was bound to serve in the armies, and his military position was accurately graded by the amount of his possessions. Highest of all were the Eq'uites, or horsemen. These were divided into eighteen centuries, of which the first six — two for each original tribe — were wholly patrician, while the remaining twelve were wealthy and powerful plebeians.
The mass of the people enrolled for service on foot was divided into five classes. Those who were able to equip themselves in complete brazen armor fought in the front rank of the phalanx. Of this class there were eighty centuries : forty of younger men, from seventeen to fortyfive years of age, who were the choicest of Roman infantry in the field; and forty of their elders, from forty-six to sixty, who were usually retained for the defense of the city. The second class were placed behind the first; they wore no coat of mail, and their shields were of wood instead of brass. The third class wore no greaves, and the fourth carried no shields. These three classes consisted of only twenty centuries each. The fifth and lowest military class did not serve in the phalanx, but formed the light-armed infantry, and provided themselves only with darts and slings. Below all the classes were a few centuries of the poorest
people, who were not required to equip themselves for war. They were sometimes armed, at the public expense, on occasions of great loss or danger to the state; or they followed the army as supernumeraries, and were ready to take the weapons and places of those who fell.
20. Beside the patrician tribes of Ramnes, Tities, and Luceres, Servius made four tribes in the city and twenty-six in the country, consisting of land-owners without respect to rank. The meeting place for the whole thirty was the Forum at Rome, while the centuries met without the city on the field of Mars. The people assembled in the Forum had all the powers of self-government. They elected magistrates and levied taxes for the support of the state, duties which hitherto had belonged to the Comitia Curiata. Of the public lands on the Etruscan side of the Tiber, gained in his early wars, Servius assigned a certain portion to the plebeians, in full ownership. The patricians had leased these lands from the state for the pasturage of their flocks, and they were much exasperated by the new allotment.
21. Servius extended the bounds of the city far beyond the Roma Quadra'ta of the Palatine. The Esquiline, Cælian, and Aventine hills had already been occupied by surburban settlements, while the Capitoline, Quirinal, and Vim'inal were held by the Sabine tribes. These Seven Hills, * with a large space between and around them, were inclosed by Servius in a new wall, which lasted more than eight hundred years, until the time of the emperor Aurelian. Servius reigned fortyfour years, B. C. 578-534. Desirous above all things for the continuance of his reformed institutions, he had determined to abdicate the throne, after causing the people, by a free and universal vote, to elect two magistrates who should rule but one year. Before the end of their term they were to provide, in like manner, for the peaceful choice of their successors; and thus Rome would have passed, by a bloodless revolution, to a popular government. The nobles, however, revolted against this infringement of their exclusive rights. Led by Tarquin, son of the first monarch of that name, and husband of the wicked Tullia, daughter of Servius, they murdered the beneficent king and placed their leader on the throne.
22. Tarquin, called “the Proud,” set aside all the popular laws of Servius, and restored the privileges of the “houses”; but as soon as he felt secure in his power, he oppressed nobles and people alike. He compelled the poorer classes to toil upon the public works which his father had
The name of the City of the Seven Mountains had been given to Rome when within much narrower limits. The Septimontium included only the Palatine, Esquiline, and Calian, which were divided into smaller peaks or eminences, seven in all.
begun, and upon others which he himself originated. Such were the permanent stone seats of the Circus Maximus, a new system of sewers, and the great Temple of Jupiter on the Capitoline Hill. By wars or intrigues, Tarquin made himself supreme throughout Latium. But his insolence disgusted the patricians; he took away the property or lives of citizens without consulting the Senate, while he imposed upon them civil and military burdens beyond what the law permitted. The vile, misconduct of his son Sextus led at last to a revolt, in which kingly government was overthrown. The Tarquins and all their clan were banished. The very name of king was thenceforth held in especial abhorrence at Rome. Only in one case was it tolerated. A “king for offering sacrifices” was appointed, that the gods might not miss their usual mediator with men; but this sacerdotal king was forbidden to hold any civil office.
Early history of Rome is largely fabulous. Three races in Italy, of whom the Etruscans, before the rise of Rome, were most powerful. Their cities, art, and religion. Rome was founded by Latins, but embraced a mixed population of Sabines, Etruscans, and others, which gave rise to the three tribes. Three hundred poble “houses” constituted the Senate and Comitia Curiata. Clientage. Formation of a commonalty under Aucus Martius. Buildings of Tarquinius Prisciis. Free constitution of Servius Tullius. Division of the people into centuries, both as soldiers and citizens. Thirty tribes assemble in the Forum. Inclosure of the Seven Hills by the Tullian Wall. Tyranny of Tarquin the Proud. Royalty abolished at Rome. Supposed Chronology of the Kings: Romulus, B. C. 753–716; Numa, 716-673; Tullius Hostilius, 673-611 ; Ancus Martius, 611-616; L. Tar. quinius Priscus, 616-578; Servius Tullius, 578–531; Tarquinius Superbus, 531-510.
RELIGION OF ROME.
23. Before passing to the history of the Republic, we glance at the religion of Rome. For the first 170 years from the foundation of the city, the Romans had no images of their gods. Idolatry has probably been, in every nation, a later corruption of an earlier and more spiritual worship. Roman religion was far less beautiful and varied in its conceptions than that of the Greeks. * It afforded but little inspiration to poetry or art, but it kept alive the homely household virtues, and regulated the transactions of the farm, the forum, and the shop, by princi. ples drawn from a higher range of being.
* At a later period, when the Romans had become familiar with the literature of the Greeks, an attempt was made to unite the mythologies of the two nations. Some deities, like Apollo, were directly borrowed from the Greeks; in other cases, some resemblance of office or character caused the Greek and the Roman divinities to be considered the same. Thus Jupiter was identified with Zeus; Minerva, the thinking goddess – the Etruscan Menerfa – with Athena, etc. By order of the Delphic oracle or of the Sibylline Books, living serpents, sacred to Æsculapius, were brought from Epidaurus to Rome, to avert a pestilence, B. C. 293.
The chief gods of the Romans were Jupiter and Mars. The former was supreme; but the latter was, throughout the early history of this warlike people, the central object of worship. March, the first month of their year, was consecrated to him, and, in almost all European languages, still bears his name. The great war festival occupied a large portion of the month. During its first few days the twelve Salii, or 'leapers, priests of Mars, who were chosen from the noblest families, passed through the streets singing, dancing, and beating their rods upon their brazen shields. Quirinus, under whose name Romulus was worshiped, was only a duplicate Mars, arising from the union of the two mythologies of the Romans and Sabines. He had, also, his twelve leapers, and was honored, in February, with similar ceremonies.
24. The celebrations of the several periods of the farmer's year were next in order to the war festival. The month of April was marked by days of sacrifice to the nourishing earth; to Ceres, the goddess of growth; to the patroness of flocks; and to Jupiter, the protector of vines; while a deprecatory offering was made to Rust, the enemy of crops. In May the Arval Brothers, a company of twelve priests, held their three days' festival in honor of Dea Dia, invoking her blessing in maintaining the fertility of the earth, and granting prosperity to the whole territory of Rome. August had its harvest festivals; October, its wine celebration in honor of Jupiter; December, its two thanksgivings for the treasures of the granary, its Saturnalia or seed-sowing on the 17th, and its cele. bration of the shortest day, which brought back the new sun. Sailors had their festivals in honor, respectively, of the gods of the river, the harbor, and the sea. The ceremonial year was closed with the singular Lu’percaʼlia, or wolf festival, in which a certain order of priests, girdled with goat-skins, leaped about like wolves, or ran through the city scourging the spectators with knotted thongs; and by the Ter’mina’lia, or boundary-stone festival in honor of Terminus, the god of landmarks.
Janus, the double-faced god of beginnings, was a peculiarly Roman divinity. To him all gates and doors were sacred, as well as the morning, the opening of all solemnities, and the month (January) in which the labors of the husbandman began anew in southern Italy. Sacrifices were offered to him on twelve altars, and prayers at the beginning of every day. New-year's day was especially sacred to him, and was supposed to impart its character to the whole year. People were careful, therefore, to have their thoughts, words, and acts on that day pure, beneficent, and just. They greeted each other with gifts and good wishes, and performed some part of whatever work they had planned for the year; while they were much dispirited if any trifling accident