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Everything posted by Virgil61

  1. Virgil61

    Who all has a degree?

    It has been done in the past: Your Level of Education? Is this worthy of being a sticky?
  2. Virgil61


    First Communion being celebrated with the whole family, followed by lots of Italian food.
  3. Virgil61

    Happy Birthday Virgil61

    On the marble floor? Zebra steaks for everyone!
  4. What immediately comes to mind is far less reliance on (or the existence of) local 'buffer' states such as Herod's Judea having absorbed them instead.
  5. Virgil61

    The Roman Revolution

    That's an intriguing idea. How does Everitt come to this conclusion? Not sure exactly since he doesn't source that paragraph, or a lot of other statements. Here's the relevant paragraph--pg 241 in the hardback version for those who'd like to sing along--which contains two quotes: Much of the Roman public believed that there were too many liberti: they were swamping the citizen body, diluting its Italianness. This appears to have worried Augustus too, who expressed a wish in his will to "preserve a significant distinction between Roman citizens and the peoples of subject nations." It is reported that when Livia once asked him to make a Gallic dependent of hers from a tribute-paying province a citizen, he refused, offering exemption from tribute instead. he said: "I would rather forfeit whatever he may owe the Privy Pure than cheapen the value of Roman citizenship."
  6. Virgil61

    The Roman Revolution

    No historian has ever suggested this motivation. The standard explanation is that Octavian curtailed manumission to relieve demands on the corn dole. Previously, slave owners could relieve themselves of the cost of feeding their slaves by passing off the costs to the state via manumission. The other motivation [from Anthony Everitt's Augustus] is thought-provoking; Augustus was worried about manumission and subsequent citizenship enfranchisement's effect on the 'Italianness' of the population with perhaps a view towards pandering to the prejudice's of the average Italian. It's been over 20 years since I've read Syme's work; I've ordered a new copy from Amazon to fix that.
  7. Virgil61

    Happy Birthday Virgil61

    Thank you all! But really, I feel 26.
  8. Not sure how long Youtube will let this stay up--it's in 7 parts--but it's worth a view. Just pathetic.
  9. Virgil61

    Bumper stickers from Rome

    My Son and my war spoils go to an academy in Athens. My Other Chariot is a Toyota And of course:
  10. I'm not the one to ask to let you back into UNRV. I'm neither a mod nor an admin.

  11. Virgil61

    Roman Archaeology

    From Augustus by Anthony Everitt, pg 104: Both sides hurled stone and lead slingshot at each other. About eighty of these lead balls have been discovered by archaeologists and many have brief, extremely rude messages scratched on them. Examples include "I seek Fulvia's c******s"; "I seek Octavian's a***"; "Octavian has a limp ****"; "Hi, Octavius, you suck ****"; "Loose Octavius, sit on this"; and, rather more feebly, "Lucius is bald."
  12. Bill Walton - College and NBA player - BA History, UCLA Brian Dennehy - actor - BA History, Columbia Steve Carell - actor (40 Year Old Virgin, The Office US version) - BA History, Dennison U. Original post edited to show dismay in bold type concerning one entry.
  13. Virgil61

    Plebeians and Patricians

    Of course I'm sure you'll agree that it beganas an economic/political marker and, as family fortunes tend to change over time, became a hereditary marker for the more powerful segments of society. It's possible, but I don't think it's likely. The patricians go back to the founding of the city, when Rome was just a village of huts. Given iron age culture, differences in family wealth and status are caused by family size (hence the fertility gods). My guess is that the patricians were simply the first big families in Rome--fertile and large in number, therefore wealthy and high status (for a bunch of people living in huts, that is). Since Rome welcomed immigrants, it was natural that there would be an us/them distinction. Just look at small towns in Appalachia that are the same way, with large long-established (but never particularly wealthy) families taking ferocious pride in their "roots" and seeking to maintain political and religious influence in their communities. EDIT: A better analogy might be Americans who take such enormous pride in tracing their families back to the Mayflower. These American patricians didn't begin as richer than the later immigrants, they were just first and long-established. In fact, those Massachusetts puritans were originally so far from rich that they were stealing and begging food from the natives. I think there's a great deal of truth to all this. You can find it today in small towns in my home town--or anywhere else I imagine--where older families are more well known and respected. Take a look at p 162 on Forsythe for an interesting take on the issue (I've inserted the paragraph for those who don't have access): Since WWII, one important trend in the study of this problem has been to take seriously the possibility that the late annalistic tradition was wrong about a patrician monopoly of the consulship from its inception to 366 BC and to regard the non-patrician names in the consular list as both reliable and genuinely non-patrician. this hypothesis has often been combined with an idea proposed by the Italian scholar De Sanctis that, like so many other things, the patriciate was the product of historical evolution, and the group of families which composed it did not become a closed, exclusive body until some time during th early republic. E.J. Bickermann reinforced the plausibility of this idea by pointing out its similarity t much better documented cases of self-defined closed ruling oligarchies in the free communes of late medieval Italy...De Sanctis's concept of the closing of the patriciate has been widely accepted and has been applied by various scholars to the surviving data in attempting to determine exactly when the patriciate came into being. Indeed, an evolutionary approach to the question of the patriciate's origin receives support from both the ancient literary tradition and archaeology.
  14. Virgil61

    Plebeians and Patricians

    Of course I'm sure you'll agree that it beganas an economic/political marker and, as family fortunes tend to change over time, became a hereditary marker for the more powerful segments of society. Perhaps what, 5-10% or so of the population was patrician? While some perhaps 5-10% of the plebeian group gaining economic and political power over generations (as 'respected' families) replacing or matching that of patrician families who'd fallen from fortune. It's a guess of course, the percentages may be off but it's not far-fetched. And at least at the level of the political and economically powerful it would point towards their being a mixed bunch. Of course those who were unlucky enough to never have their family lines 'bubble up' remained plebes . Still the Romans weren't above using origins to denigrate others. I think it was Livy who was keen to point out that at Cannae, Varro was of plebeian background as if that were some part of the fault.
  15. Virgil61

    Dreary NY!

    About the same as it is there, overcast and dreary. Par for the course, it is Seattle after all.
  16. Virgil61

    UNRV: beyond the limit

    Soon I predict that we'll log on to the board, find it's been taken over by Amazon or Walmart, and the admins will be somewhere in the Bahamas on a nice beach under an umbrella with a cold one.
  17. It's a great question although I can't answer the stretching issue. From my own experiences in the Army ruck marching is extremely grueling, especially when you're training new soldiers up to a standard. We would use 60-70 lb packs and go from 6 to 12 miles at a forced pace on a weekly basis--very similar to the weight carried by the average Roman soldier. Out of 100 soldiers you'll have around five or so who aren't in any condition to perform; shins and foot problems are usually the cause with lower back problems and hangovers as well. There's really little medics can do--even today--about shins, feet, backs, etc except give out some ibuprofen and make you stay off the injured body part or at least not carry a pack on it until it heals. I was in airborne units for ten years, above average esprit compared to 'leg' units, and even then an injury is an injury. Sometimes you even have to pull soldiers off the line and make them stop in order to keep from injuring themselves further. This begs the question; Did legions have stragglers? There's only three courses available as far as I can tell; give the pack to another soldier or put it on a wagon and let the injured party walk without extra weight, put the soldier on a wagon if they are available or have them 'fall out' of the formation and catch up during the evening bivouac. Depending on the legion's wagon train and/or internal culture--like modern day units I'm sure that each legion had it's own (internal culture)--I suspect having a certain number of stragglers was common. Better units probably had a centurion or some junior NCO type go behind and organize these men in some semblance of marching order.
  18. Virgil61

    Rome And Usa.

    It seems we do tend to get 'the best' in terms of hard-working or being exceptionally gifted when it comes to immigrants.
  19. Virgil61

    Firefox 2

    Just a random thought, do you use a custom skin? No, and I've kept extensions to a minimum of two--Googlebar and Bugmenot. It seems like around 20% or so of user's have had some issues with this release (2.0). Like Pantagathus I'm thinking of using IE7, a great improvement over IE6.
  20. Virgil61

    Firefox 2

    Anyone using firefox find the 2.0 version buggy? For some reason it gums up my computer at times and tends to 'hang' or freeze as well. I've been a long time user but finsd that IE7 is much more stable.
  21. My brother was engaged to a girl from Wales for a couple of years. He visited her family twice and was taken aback by just how cliquish it was in the small town they lived in. His first visit to a local pub resulted in the whole place turning and staring at him like in some movie. Once it was known he was a guest of the her family he was accepted and made a few visits there as the resident 'expert on America'. He was shocked at how anti-English they were.
  22. Virgil61

    Rome And Usa.

    It's a very broad generalization, but this is just how I feel based on my relationships with several foreigners, ranging from Bosnia to the Philippines. The one idea they all had in common was that we (mostly) take what we have for granted. Our country is the most capable of protecting its interests. I think this has a far greater role in these matters than is acknowledged. Yeah I know the type, I work with and am related to a few. They think all Americans should be as thankful as crack addicts who've just gotten a long needed fix. Well that's fine, the truth is while some individuals from Bosnia or the Philippines aren't complacent, when you go to their countries (I've been to Bosnia) everyone 'works' like they've taken a few valium and timeliness is a flexible commodity--and that's being very kind. I remember one project at a US Embassy building in Kiev, Ukraine that was finally finished when US contractors came in because the native workers lacked any sense of urgency about the project and it wallowed for weeks.