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Encyclopedia > Romanitas

Romanitas refers to an immiscibly Latin culture of the Roman Empire. Cicero contributed much to the notion. Latin is an ancient Indo-European language originally spoken in the region around Rome called Latium. ... For other uses, see Roman Empire (disambiguation). ... Marcus Tullius Cicero (IPA: ;) (January 3, 106 BC – December 7, 43 BC) was an orator and statesman of Ancient Rome, and is generally considered the greatest Latin orator and prose stylist. ...


Meaning and history

Romanitas meant a great many things, but in short it meant what it was to be Roman (that is, Roman-ness). The Roman ideal was the citizen/soldier/farmer. The farmer was a hard working, frugal, practical man who worked the land with his own hands. The soldier was a courageous, strong man who obeyed orders and risked his own life in the name of Rome. Prior to the formation, under Marius, of the standing Roman Army, Rome had a militia-type defence-force which could be called up in time of war and then disbanded during peacetime. The ideal of the citizen/soldier/farmer was Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus. According to Roman legend, Cincinnatus was tending his farm when a messenger arrived, telling him that Rome was under attack and that he had been elected dictator. He was at first reluctant to go, but the Senate pleaded with him. He defeated the enemy tribe within a matter of weeks and, despite there remaining most of his six-month term as dictator with absolute power, returned to his farm. The word citizen may refer to: A person with a citizenship Citizen Watch Co. ... A soldier is a person who serves in an armed force for pay. ... Farmer spreading grasshopper bait in his alfalfa field. ... Gaius Marius (Latin: C·MARIVS·C·F·C·N)¹ (157 BC - January 13, 86 BC) was a Roman general and politician elected Consul an unprecedented seven times during his career. ... The examples and perspective in this article or section may not represent a worldwide view. ... The United States detonated an atomic bomb over Nagasaki on August 9, 1945, effectively ending World War II. The bombings of Nagasaki and Hiroshima (on August 6) immediately killed between 100,000 and 200,000 people and are the only known instances nuclear weapons have ever been used in war. ... Widely-recognized peace symbol Peace is commonly understood to mean the Other definitions include freedom from disputes, harmonious relations and the absence of mental stress or anxiety, as the meaning of the word changes with context. ... With one hand he returns the fasces, symbol of power as appointed dictator of Rome. ... Dictator was a political office of the Roman Republic. ... The Roman Senate (Latin, Senatus) was a deliberative body which was important in the government of both the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire. ...

The attainment and possession of the virtue gravitas was highly valued by Romans of the early Republic and by Roman intellectuals. Indeed, gravitas was the single most clarifying characteristic of early republican Roman society: Look up gravitas in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

“The Roman customs and principles regarding the acquisition of wealth are better than those of the Carthaginians. In the view of the latter nothing is disgraceful that makes for gain; with the former nothing is more disgraceful than to receive bribes and to make profit by improper means. For they regard wealth obtained from unlawful transactions to be as much a subject of reproach as a fair profit from reputable sources is of commendation. A proof of the fact is this: the Carthaginians obtain office by open bribery, but among the Romans the penalty is death.”³

The virtuous character of the Romans, their honesty and trustworthiness, is shown in the way they handled their finances. Polybius remarks: “Greek statesmen, if entrusted with a single talent, though protected by ten checking-clerks, as many seals and twice as many witnesses, yet cannot be induced to keep faith; whereas among the Romans, in their magistracies and embassies, men have the handling of a great amount of money, and yet from pure respect for their oath keep their faith intact.”³ This article is about the ancient city-state of Carthage in North Africa. ... Polybius (ca 203 BC - 120 BC, Greek Πολυβιος) was a Greek historian of the Mediterranean world famous for his book called The Histories or The Rise of the Roman Empire, covering the period of 220 BC to 146 BC. // Personal experiences As the former tutor of Scipio Aemilianus , the famous adopted...

Their cultural characteristics led to their development of "self government" by adopting a classical republic and thus this class formed the backbone of the Roman Republic. A classical republic, according to certain modern political theorists, is a state of Classical Antiquity that is considered to have a republican form of government, a state where sovereignty rested with the people rather than a ruler or monarch. ... See also Roman Republic (18th century) and Roman Republic (19th century). ...

Because of the widespread influence of Roman classical literature, the idea of the citizen/soldier/farmer also took root in colonial and early America. Classics, particularly within the Western University tradition, when used as a singular noun, means the study of the language, literature, history, art, and other aspects of Greek and Roman culture during the time frame known as classical antiquity. ... For colonies not among the Thirteen colonies, see European colonization of the Americas or English colonization of the Americas. ...

Occurrences of the word ‘romanitas’

  • “In this spirit, at a critical moment in the fortunes of Western civilization, Virgil puts forward his interpretation of the history and destiny of the Eternal City, defining and fixing the secular meaning of Romanitas in close relationship to and yet with proud and confident independence of the ideals of Hellas.”¹
  • “With the accession of Valentinian, Romanitas entered upon the penultimate stage of its existence as an organized system of life.”²
  • Romanitas is also the title of an alternate history novel by Sophia McDougall.

For alternative meanings for The West in the United States, see the U.S. West and American West. ... A sculpture of Virgil, probably from the 1st century AD. For other uses, see Virgil (disambiguation). ... City motto: Senatus Populusque Romanus – SPQR (The Senate and the People of Rome) Founded 21 April 753 BC (mythical), early 1st millennium BC (archaeological) Region Latium Area  - City Proper  1285 km² Population  - City (2004)  - Metropolitan  - Density (city proper) 2,553,873 almost 4,300,000 1. ... Greece, formally called the Hellenic Republic (Greek: Ελληνική Δημοκρατία), is a country in the southeast of Europe on the southern tip of the Balkan peninsula. ... Medallion of Valentinian I. Solidus minted by Valens in ca. ... Alternate history (fiction) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... Romanitas Sophia McDougall (b. ...

Religious use

The Roman Catholic Church, most often spoken of simply as the Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with over one billion members. ... The Holy See (Latin: Sancta Sedes, lit. ... The current Pope is Benedict XVI (born Joseph Alois Ratzinger), who was elected at the age of 78 on 19 April 2005. ... Archbishop LefebvreFounder of the Society of St. ... A Tridentine Mass being celebrated in Bohermeen, Ireland in the 1950s. ... Archbishop LefebvreFounder of the Society of St. ...


  • Christianity and Classical Culture; A Study of Thought and Action From Augustus to Augustine, Charles Norris Cochrane, Oxford University Press, NY (1st pub. Clarendon Press, 1940) 1980. p.62
  • Christianity and Classical Culture; A Study of Thought and Action From Augustus to Augustine, Charles Norris Cochrane, Oxford University Press, NY (1st pub. Clarendon Press, 1940) 1980. p.292
  • The Portable Greek Historians: The Essence of Herodotus, Thucydides, Xenophon, Polybius, edited by M. I. Finley, The Viking Press, NY, NY, l959. Bk VI, sec 56; p.499


  • The Roman Way, Edith Hamilton, W.W. Norton & Co., NY. 1st print 1932, Norton 1964,1993.

Edith Hamilton (August 12, 1867 - May 31, 1963) was a classicist and educator before she became a writer on mythology. ...

Related works

  • The Founders and the Classics: Greece, Rome and the American Enlightenment, Carl J. Richard, Harvard University Press. ISBN 0-674-31425-5
    • Chapter of The Founders and the Classics, Mixed Government and Classical Pastoralism, David H. Kelly, Professor Emeritus, Department of Classics and General Humanities, Montclair State University, Upper Montclair, NJ 07043.



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