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Commanders and Command in the Roman Republic and Early Empire$
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Fred K. Drogula

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781469621265

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469621265.001.0001

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Concepts and Traditions of Military Leadership in Early Rome (to 367 BC)

Concepts and Traditions of Military Leadership in Early Rome (to 367 BC)

Chapter:
(p.8) 1 Concepts and Traditions of Military Leadership in Early Rome (to 367 BC)
Source:
Commanders and Command in the Roman Republic and Early Empire
Author(s):

Fred K. Drogula

Publisher:
University of North Carolina Press
DOI:10.5149/northcarolina/9781469621265.003.0001

This chapter reveals that the origins of Roman military command do not lie in the traditional account of a joint consulship that was established at the foundation of the republic. Rather, two underlying trends are visible: military command was originally a separate sphere from civilian governance, and so the commander was originally understood to be different from the magistrate; and the early Romans understood military command to be a decentralized activity that could be undertaken simultaneously by several independent praetors or other commanders. Hence, the republic had started with a far less centralized and regularized system of command, as opposed to traditional accounts that point to a concept of military command that has remained unchanged since the foundation of the republic.

Keywords:   Roman military command, Roman republic, civilian governance, joint consulship, Roman commander

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