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By Dexter Hoyos

A better half to Roman Imperialism , written through a uncommon physique of students, explores Romes upward push to empire, and its mammoth ancient impression on her topic peoples and, both momentous, at the Romans themselves, an influence nonetheless felt at the present time.

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Rome did not claim a hegemony over Italy in 304. She did not venture to break up the Samnite Confederacy either and by 298 Samnium showed the genesis of roman imperialism 35 renewed capacity for war. ) But from 306 the now highly successful Roman alliance had to guard against any outside intervention to redress the balance of power. Carthage made peace with Syracuse in 306 and renewed her treaty with Rome, no doubt recognising her gains but possibly not wishing them any greater. Tarentum would not recognise a Roman hegemony over Italy; she still had hegemonial aspirations of her own and connections with Greece: in 302 the Spartan Cleonymus was active in Italy.

How did the Roman armies get there? 29). This did not happen. Roman audacity and speed established a friendly route to the Adriatic side and then southward to Apulia where the Romans set up a base in the rear of Samnium, at allied Luceria. This awe-inspiring beginning bore no immediate fruit: the Samnites did not behave as though encircled. It was as if a small python sought to encompass a dinner too large for it. The enemy kept meeting the Romans in force despite famous ‘victories’ of Roman heroes over them and—this at least was real—trapped the invaders of their country at the Caudine Forks in 321.

This was another contrast with the Romans. Although these sometimes, though not always, flattered themselves on being on morally higher ground than their western opponents, and often liked to sneer at contemporary Greeks for alleged frivolity, they admired Greek civilisation and forthrightly appropriated much of it, from artworks (often as booty) to literature and philosophy. 16 Such differences show that Roman imperialism, while in some ways resembling modern versions, nevertheless also embodied qualities much at odds with them.

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