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Stop Basta! Enough already, whilst I am all up for lively scholarly debate the key word here is scholarly...

Whoa there..This is not a debating society. Neither do I do need to submit my thesis to a panel of my peers. This is an internet forum. Now I have cited two or three secondary sources. These sources are infinitely more 'expert' on the subject matter I would argue than any of us here. Also, those same sources have been used in the past to support this argument and that argument. Therefore their statements on a particular subject are relevant are they not? Now all I am doing is shining the spotlight on a subject who is continually rammed down everyones throat as being angelic in nature, who's sheeit don't stink, someone who is above reproach. When statements that begin with "At the risk of making my namesake turn over in his grave..." I am going to shine the spotlight back. This thread is about Ambitus, electoral corruption, and the respected, often cited, and often lauded secondary sources I have quoted are unanimous in stating that Cato Minor was guilty of corruption.

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Thank you for your condecension on the other hand Cato, I am q. well aware of this, and if you cannot see what pressure came from people being able to actually inspect your ballots you show little imagination as a historian.

First, apologies for the appearance of condescension; it wasn't my intent. I'm also not denying that there were pressures relieved by the secret ballot: I'm simply raising the question of what pressures they were. If the pressures that were relieved were merely social pressures (as Cicero implies, probably disingenuously), then the introduction of the secret ballot wouldn't be expected to cause any change in other forms of pressure.

 

firstly, if you take away threat of force, rewards etc what influence do you have???????????????????????????????

Persuasion--the same type of influence that Cicero used in influencing the crowd at Verres' trial. There were contiones for exactly this type of influence to work.

 

Especially if you then remove the client realtionship, which to an extent I agree has been overplayed considering the amount of source material we have for it. However, lets not get carried away here and call it an insidious myth

A misunderstanding. I didn't mean to imply that the patron/client relationship did not exist, but that it is a myth that the patron/client relationship obligated clients to vote as their patrons wished. Also, thanks for the quote from Dionysius--that's a real gem. Without source material like that, it's impossible to make rational decisions about the conflicting claims to be found in secondary sources, which cannot be treated as sacrosanct authorities.

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It seems that things are getting a little heated here. We should act as friends. Personally, I think that secondary resources should be respected as well as the primary sources. In the primary sources cited, (to me), there seems to be an undertone of 'He is not guilty, but think about it'. "...infinitely more 'expert' on the subject matter I would argue than any of us here. Also, those same sources have been used in the past to support this argument and that argument. Therefore their statements on a particular subject are relevant are they not?" This is a valid point.

 

I feel that the client system did exist in Rome, and that bribery in one form or another was practiced. Bribery does not necessarily mean the passing of money. Secret ballot or not, one would not wish to be on one's patron's losing side.

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