Diplomatic procedures at Rome in the second century B.CReport as inadecuate

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Reference: Piddock, Graham., (1979). Diplomatic procedures at Rome in the second century B.C. Dphil. University of Oxford.Citable link to this page:


Diplomatic procedures at Rome in the second century B.C

Abstract: The diplomatic season was a development of the period after 189 whichwas unparallelled led but explicable in the context to Rome's new hegemony.It reflects the constitutional role ascribed to the consuls by Polybius,which could only be fulfilled early in the consular year; but there wassufficient flexibility to allow numerous exceptions. It belongs to anannual cycle, artificial in diplomacy but which suited Rome's administrativerequirements.Embassies approached a senior magistrate who allocated a senatorialaudience and public hospitality. The magistrates thus had power over theorder and timing of audiences which could be manipulated for purposes ofetiquette or expediency. Abuse of this power and the scope for corruptionwere limited by the Lex Gabinia, probably of Ciceronian date. Only limitedhospitality was provided.The official audience is ignored in some evidence which concentrateson pre-audience unofficial activity which became standard procedure. Themotlf of bribery is often associated with this. Because of their influenceover senatorial decisions the consulares figured prominently in such activity,but privately connected patroni and hospites played an important part andwere thus cultivated by states and dynasts.Senators could interrupt and question ambassadors but this did notfacilitate negotiation. The character of the audience as a simple exchangeof statements was determined by certain democratic features of ancientdiplomacy: openness, which suited Rome's purposes and made possiblecollective audiences (these helped the organisation of diplomatic activityand underlined the senate's arbitral role); and restricted ambassadorialcompetence which was hardly modified in the new conditions.Interpretation of ambassadorial speeches was required for dignityrather than intelligibility. The impression created at an audience mightinfluence the senate; but Polybius often overstates the importance ofambassadors' speeches, since other factors influencing the senate's decisions(unofficial activity and the dependence on senatorial experts) could renderthe audience proceedings irrelevant.

Type of Award:Dphil Level of Award:Doctoral Awarding Institution: University of Oxford Notes:The digital copy of this thesis has been made available thanks to the generosity of Dr Leonard Polonsky

Bibliographic Details

Issue Date: 1979Identifiers

Urn: uuid:f0078c94-385a-47c7-a9dc-c612ae12fb9a

Source identifier: 602344723

Source identifier: 602344724 Item Description

Type: Thesis;

Language: eng Subjects: Rome 265-30 B.C Diplomacy History Foreign relations Tiny URL: td:602344723


Author: Piddock, Graham. - institutionUniversity of Oxford facultyFaculty of Literae Humaniores - - - - Bibliographic Details Issue Date:

Source: https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:f0078c94-385a-47c7-a9dc-c612ae12fb9a


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