The First Consulship (59 <span class="smallCaps">bc</span>)

Edited by Luciano Canfora and Julian Stringer

in Julius Caesar

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print February 2007 | ISBN: 9780748619368
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748670734 | DOI:
The First Consulship (59 bc)

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Having become effectively a ‘consul without a colleague’, but with a Senate hardly disposed to be magnanimous, Caesar pursued an overtly ‘popularist’ line: sharing out the ager Campanus (the Campanian Territory) and the campus Stella (the ‘plain called Stellas’) among 20,000 citizens who had three children or more; reducing by one third the tax debt of tax-farmers. He needed to give his traditional power base tangible and positive signs that he was in control. But signs of unrest were also apparent among the people. Among Caesar's legislative measures in the year 59 bc the law on extortion stands out in particular. This was the most comprehensive legislation on the subject enacted up to that point, and in its essentials it remained in force for a very long time.

Keywords: Julius Caesar; consul; tax-farmers; extortion law

Chapter.  2234 words. 

Subjects: Greek and Roman Archaeology

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