The chronotope of the road represents a hodological view of travel, that is, a highly restricted narrative perspective, which reflects the perceptions of the traveler without orienting the reader in a broader geographic and cartographic context cf. Janni , 79—, esp. It is a powerful structuring device in Roman literature. Its hodological first-person narration resists translation onto a cartographic perspective: although the poem begins as a journey south along the Via Appia, the narrator somehow finds himself on the Via Minucia Hor.
Gowers , Reckford ; geographic perspective thereby becomes an index for other registers of content. More broadly, Satires 1. After they each independently get directions from the same old woman, they find that they have been led into a brothel. Lucius is barred from leaving the road, and because he is treated as an animal, rather than a human, he lacks agency to determine his own movement and direction. Perhaps the most striking departure comes in an ethnographical description of the habits and lifestyles of Egyptian outlaws living in the Nile Delta 4. In each of these texts, the experience of reading mimics that of the traveler cf.
The road is also a central organizing principle in two quasi-technical genres of Roman-era prose: the itinerary and the periplous circumnavigation. In other words, his text combines narration of his first-person experiences of travel with detailed description and reporting see further Elsner This impossible, cartographic view is a highly desirable one, and it is often correlated with increased knowledge and an omniscient narrative voice, particularly in ethnographic descriptions.
Thus, the island of Britain is imagined as triangular by the geographers and ethnographers of the Roman world, such as Caesar BGall 5. See Woodman , —34 with Ogilvie and Richmond , — Few works, if any, can consistently maintain such distant cartographic perspectives. Rambaud BGall 1. These points of view are highly significant for the meaning of each instance of travel.
For Caesar and the agrimensores , the process of describing a landscape from the strategic perspective is an important precursor to possessing it. By virtue of its extreme distance, this point of view severs the intimate connection between description and possession of territory; in its place, it gives the narrator an omniscient ethnographical vista from which to describe territories and peoples. Scholarship has been particularly attuned to the relationship between geography, the depiction of movement in Roman poetry, and the ideology of the Augustan empire e.
The connection between travel and state foundation in the Aeneid is indicative of a broader trend for the poetics of travel and space to invite and frame discussion of the political, the social, and the moral in the poetry of Virgil and his contemporaries: for example, the countryside of the Eclogues and the ethnographic descriptions in Georgics 2 Virg. In Roman poetry, travel therefore offers a space to discuss a range of other issues, such as political power, imperial ambitions, and Roman urbanism.
The focus on travel is not limited to the poetry of the Augustan era. Identity and empire are even more explicitly linked to travel in other genres, such as geography, historiography, encyclopedic and scientific literature, oratory and oratorical theory, and prose fiction. Just as physical travel encouraged the contemplation of empire and the confrontation with other peoples and places, literary representations of movement offered space for discourses about the relationship of ethnicity, identity, and imperial power.
For my final pair of case studies, I return to the personal experience of travel with a form of travel story often called the narrative of the quest. In a subset of the Greek and Latin prose fiction of the second and third centuries CE, travel narratives take on deeper significance, and movement through space becomes a kind of pilgrimage, signaling a journey toward greater enlightenment and knowledge of the self. Elsner , 29 : north as far the Caucasus 2. Elsner : 32 ; it is not enough to hear about them from his experienced ethas , 6. Thus, when Apollonius is tried before Domitian in Rome, he repeats a saying of the Brahmans in his own self-defense 3.
His travels also provide him with authority, especially in religious matters. Early in the text Lucius, an overly curious sophist, is transformed through a magical mishap into an ass 3. His salvation comes in the eleventh and final book, when he is told by the goddess Isis, who appears in a dream vision, that he will find a garland of roses at a procession dedicated to her He finds and eats the roses at the festival of Isis As a result of his journey and his experience, he becomes an initiate in Isiac cult The novel closes with Lucius preparing to become an initiate of Osiris Yet for all the changes that he undergoes, he concludes the novel in more or less the same physical form that he began it.
He now has a shaved head and has changed his wardrobe. Such an ending suggests that the experience of travel leaves few physical traces on individuals and landscapes. Travel is an ephemeral process, one that must be continually commemorated and maintained or cease to exist. Yet despite, or perhaps because of, the challenges inherent in preserving travel, it remains a central organizing principle of many literary texts from the Roman world.
Its centrality further suggests how important the movement of people and goods was to all facets of the Roman experience. From emperors to slaves, orators to merchants, travel through the world and the infrastructure that enabled it were defining features of the practicalities, realities, and imaginations of Roman life. Casson remains a valuable overview of travel in the Roman world; Adams contains many excellent studies; Scheidel uses the ORBIS model to redraw the map of the Roman world in terms of connectivity.
For more specific topics, the following have proven particularly helpful. Road travel: Kolb ; Adams Sea travel: Arnaud River travel: Campbell Imperial travel: Millar ; Halfmann Economics and the cost of travel and transport: Adams ; Scheidel Adventus and profectio rituals: Lehnen , Pilgrimage: Elsner and Rutherford ; Rutherford Dindorf, K. Harpocrationis lexicon in decem oratores Atticos. Oxford: Oxford University Press, repr. Groningen: Bouma, Paris: Belles lettres, Morel, Willy. Fragmenta poetarum latinorum epicorum et lyricorum, praeter Ennium et Lucilium. Stuttgart: B. Teubner, Scheidel, Walter, and Elijah Meeks.
Klauser, Theodor, et al. Stuttgart: A. Hiersemann, —. Shackleton Bailey, David R. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, — Adams, Colin. London and New York: Routledge. Find this resource:. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Alcock, Susan E.
Pausanias: Travel and Memory in Roman Greece. Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft. Arnaud, Pascal. Bagnall, Roger S. Bakhtin, Mikhail M. Austin: University of Texas Press. Bean, George E. Journeys in Rough Cilicia, — Wien: Graz, H. Beard, Mary. The Roman Triumph. Bekker-Nielsen, T.
Bagnall, —7. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell. Les inscriptions grecques de Philae. Paris: Centre national de la recherche scientifique. Les inscriptions grecques et latines du Colosse de Memnon. Bowersock, Glen. Bowie, Ewen. Russell, 53— Bremer, Wilm. Bradley, Keith. Slavery and Society at Rome. Braudel, Fernand. Berkeley: University of California Press. Briant, Pierre. Brilliant, Richard. Brodersen, Kai. Frankfurt, Germany: Insel. Hildesheim, Germany: Olms. Bruner, Edward M. Culture on Tour: Ethnographies of Travel.
Chicago: Chicago University Press. Burkert, Walter. Krummen, — Campbell, Brian. Rivers and the Power of Ancient Rome. Casson, Lionel. Travel in the Ancient World. London: Allen and Unwin. Ships and Seamanship in the Ancient World. Princeton, NJ. Princeton University Press. Castritius, Helmut. Introitus adventus Augusti et Caesaris. Chevallier, Raymond. Roman Roads. Clarke, Katherine.
Oxford: Clarendon Press. Clinton, Kevin. Roman initiates and benefactors, second century B. Coarelli, Filippo. Clauss and Daniel P. Comaroff, John L. Ethnicity, Inc. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Cooper, J. Harris and K. Iara, — Cumont, Franz. Paris: P. Darnell, John Coleman.
Narratology and Classics: A Practical Guide. Leiden and Boston: E. Dench, Emma. Dilke, Oswald A. Greek and Roman Maps. Dillon, Matthew. Pilgrims and Pilgrimage in Ancient Greece. Elsner, John. Alcock, John F. Elter, Anton. Bonn: C. Erdkamp, Paul. Feldherr, Andrew. Foertmeyer, Victoria A. Frankfurter, David. Religion in Roman Egypt: Assimilation and Resistance. Il papiro di Artemidoro P. Milano: Edizioni universitarie di lettere economia diritto. Galli, Marco. Gates, Jennifer Erin. Gilliam, J. Gowers, Emily. Book 1. Halfmann, Helmut. Stuttgart: Steiner. Hardie, Philip R.
Harris, William V. Rethinking the Mediterranean. Harrison, Stephen J. Hohlwein, N. Holum, Kenneth G. Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press. Hopkins, Keith. Conquerors and Slaves. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Reprinted in Walter Scheidel and Sitta von Reden, eds. London: Routledge, Horden, Peregrine, and Nicholas Purcell. Horsfall, Nicholas. Humm, Michel. Hutton, William. Miliarium Lyciae: Das Wegweisermonument von Patara. Lykia: Anadolu—Akdeniz arkeolojisi 4.
Janni, Pietro. La mappa e il periplo: Cartografia antica e spazio odologico. Roma: Giorgio Bretschneider Editore. Jaritz, Horst, and Mieczyslaw Rodziewicz. Abteilung Kairo — Johnson, William A. Bookrolls and Scribes in Oxyrhynchus. Toronto and Buffalo: University of Toronto Press. Jones, Christopher P. Kissel, Theodor K. Katharinen, Germany: Scripta Mercaturae Verlag. Knapp, Arthur B. Koenen, Ludwig. Gruen, A. Long, and Andrew Stewart, 25— Koeppel, Gerhard. Kolb, Anne. Berlin: Akademie Verlag. Herzig vom Juni in Bern , edited by Regula Frei-Stolba, — Bern: Lang. Ancient Libraries.
Ordering Knowledge in the Roman Empire. Kosmin, Paul J. Kowalzig, Barbara. Kubitschek, W. Kuhn, Christina. Stuttgart: F. Steiner Verlag. Laurence, Ray. London: Routledge. Lehnen, Joachim. Frankfurt am Main and New York: P. Letronne, Jean Antoine. Paris: Imprimerie Royale. Lewin, Kurt. Lightfoot, Jane L. Dionysius Periegetes, Description of the Known World. With Introduction, Text, Translation, and Commentary. Lindheim, Sara H. Lopes Penga, M. Lynch, Kevin. The Image of the City. Cambridge, MA: Technology Press. Ma, John. MacCormack, Sabine.
Art and Ceremony in Late Antiquity. Manning, Joseph G. Marzano, Annalisa. Matthews, John F. New Haven: Yale University Press. Meijer, Fik, and Onno van Nijf. Trade, Transport and Society in the Ancient World. Millar, Fergus. The Emperor in the Roman World. London: Duckworth. Minchin, Elizabeth. Mitchell, Stephen.
Morris, Alan. Sacred Journeys: The Anthropology of Pilgrimage. Myers, Micah. Nicolet, Claude. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. Nisbet, Gideon. Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag. Ogilvie, Robert M. De vita Agricolae. Owens, Edwin J. English transl. Parrott, Christopher. PhD diss.
Pearce, Thomas E. Pelling, Christopher B. Life of Antony. Perdrizet, Paul, and Gustave Lefebvre. Nancy: Berger-Levrault. Petsalis-Diomidis, Alexia. Pettegrew, David K. Bagnall, Kai Brodersen, Craige B. Champion, Andrew Erskine, and Sabine R. Huebner, — Oxford and Malden, MA: Blackwell. Paris: Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique. Platt, Verity. Pretzler, Maria. Pausanias: Travel Writing in Ancient Greece. Purves, Alex. Space and Time in Ancient Greek Narrative. New York: Cambridge University Press. Quint, David. Rambaud, Michel.
Paris: Les Belles Lettres. Chevallier, — For comparisons with Europe, see Hui Zhao and forthcoming. In both cases, however, successful expansion was made possible by mass conscription of peasants. In the fourth century b. This, and the con- sequent absence of prolonged inconclusive warfare against other states, obviated the need for farther-reaching domestic reforms promoting centralization and bureaucratization.
See chapters 1—5 in Twitchett and Loewe , and Lewis — In the second century b. When Eckstein claims that Republican Rome found itself in an unusually competitive anarchic environment, he fails to appreciate the more severe nature of conflict in Warring States China. Schulz and Eich 48—66 are the best analytical accounts. Financial management, which required a greater concentration of human capital, was largely farmed out to private contractors. In this context, the army was the only institution that attained a certain level of professionalization. This, in turn, laid the groundwork for the increasing autonomy of military power near the end of the Republic, which facilitated warlordism and the creation of a military monarchy.
Once military power broke free from political and ideological constraints, the rule of the collective was replaced by warlords and monarchs, who came to rely on a fully professional- ized army and managed political power through the traditional mechanisms of patronage and patrimonialism. The main difference to China is that in China, military power was mostly though by no means always successfully con- tained and for long periods even marginalized by political-ideological power.
The near-perfect Han fusion of political and ideological power was a function of the centralizing reforms of the Warring States period and the subsequent adoption of a hybrid Confucian-Legalist belief system that reinforced state authority. Economic power was arguably less constrained in the West than in China, which allowed the Qin and Han states to aim for greater interference in economic affairs, an approach that the Roman state only belatedly adopted from the late third century c. In a manner of speaking, Warring States Qin and Republican Rome started out at opposite ends of the spectrum: Qin was unusually centralized and bureaucratized, whereas Rome was run by a collective and greatly depended on private administrative resources.
These dramatic differences may have affected the differential pace of conquest but did not impact ultimate outcomes, that is, eventual domination of the entire ecumene. Over time, both political systems converged, a process that began around b. It is the mature Roman Empire of the fourth century For the concept, see Mann 22— For legalism, see Fu ; on the legalist perme- ation of Han-period state Confucianism, see Lewis Even child emper- ors managed by powerful regents, who had long been common in China but rare in Rome, eventually appeared in the later Roman Empire.
In China, by contrast, centralization, the creation of territorial states, and the disempowerment of aristocrats facilitated rapid annexa- tion and bureaucratic expansion. As soon as an impetus for reform had been provided by the military and political crisis of the mid-third century c. First of all, the num- ber of senior positions was essentially the same in both states, a few hundred in Compare Bielenstein and chapters 7—8 in Twitchett and Loewe, eds.
In the case of Rome, the main counterfactual outcomes would have been a shift to monocracy in response to greater-than-historical interstate competition a scenario made plausible by the well-attested tendency to pro- long and expand individual commands in times of crisis or state failure if oligarchic institutions had proven too resilient. Real-life analogies to the latter outcome are furnished by preimperial Chinese states that failed to curtail aristocratic power. See now esp. Eich — Second, even before the reforms in late antiquity did Roman governors draw on the services of thousands of seconded soldiers as well as their own slaves and freedmen while the familia Caesaris, the patrimonial staff of the emperors, must have contained thousands of slaves and ex-slaves.
By c. For one, Han cities did not feature self-governing city councils or elections. Kelly and , n. See now Loewe 38—88, on the Yinwan documents from c. Wei Langhammer — Compare Bielenstein —42 to Saller I owe this reference to Enno Giele. It is true that in Rome, military power had long been more autonomous than in China; yet by the late second century c. In the ensuing successor states in both East and West, foreign conquerors and indigenes were initially kept apart and subject to separate registration procedures, the former as warriors, the latter as produc- ers of extractable surplus.
In both cases, these barriers eroded over time, and we witness a synthesis of foreign and local elites. Divergence Trajectories of state formation signally diverged from the sixth century c. Hamstrung by the autonomy of their regional armies, the Arab conquerors were unable to establish a durable ecumenical empire.
De Crespigny ; Wolfram ; Heather ; Goffart Most concisely, Wickham ; Graff chapters 3 and 5. For more detailed discussion, see Scheidel forthcoming b. Kennedy chapters 1—3. For this process, see esp. Tilly ; Spruyt ; Ertman See Hui for an innovative comparative analysis of balancing in early modern Europe and its eventual failure in Warring States China.
Travel in the Roman World - Oxford Handbooks
In sixth century c. Why did this happen? In principle, a whole variety of factors may have been relevant. For instance, the larger size of the western ecumene was more condu- cive to fragmentation: China lacked state-level competitors of the caliber of the Persians and Arabs. China was spared the two hundred years of recurrent plague that ravaged the early medieval West.
Moreover, the post-Han period in China was characterized by increased competition from rival belief systems, such as Daoism and Buddhism. The temporary efflorescence of Buddhist monasteries in the Northern Wei period even suggests a measure of convergence between developments in early medieval China and late Roman and post-Roman Europe, where the clerical establishment accumulated vast resources, eclipsed the state in its access to human capital, and eventually came to share in its sovereignty.
Abiding frictions between For discussion, see Adshead 58— For the putative impact of the plague, see now Little and more sweepingly Rosen However, while state capabilities would necessarily have been influenced by these and other contextual features, causal analysis ought to focus more nar- rowly on the ways in which differences in state-society relations shaped trends in overall state formation.
Chris Wickham has proposed an explanatory model of proximate causation for large parts of postancient western Eurasia that can also be used to shed light on contrasting developments in East Asia. In the absence of centralized tax collection and coercive capabilities, the power of rulers largely depended on elite cooperation secured through bargain- ing processes. From the perspective of the general population, local elites rather than state rulers and their agents dominated, and feudal relationships were a likely outcome. The Umayyad Empire also suffered from the regionalization of revenue collection and military power.
In terms of state capacity, developments in early medieval China differed quite dramatically from conditions in much of western Eurasia. Wickham I also draw here on the review by Sarris b for a convenient summary. For the East Roman state, see esp. Haldon The nature of antecedent governmental insti- tutions and differences in the compensation of military forces most notably between the state-managed allocation of goods in the East versus the assignation of land in parts of the West and their organization a predominance of cavalry or infantry may all have played a critical role.
All these issues call for further investigation. Eberhard ; Pearce ; Lewis forthcoming. Tang —4; Huang Consequently, war was central to state formation in this era. The members of this class thought of themselves as sharing a common nobility but jealously guarded the honor to which each believed his rank entitled him. Monarchs became progressively less able to control these conflicts owing to the inherent weakness of the governments they headed.
The segmentary lineage system not only shaped the social hierarchy of the aristocracy but the political landscape of Bronze Age kingdoms. These positions were the hereditary possessions of the lineages and replicated the institutions of 1. Lewis 17; Yates 12; Chung On war and state formation in early modern Europe, see the classic account of Tilly , esp.
Lewis 28—29; on the development of the Shang and Zhou empires, see now Chung 15— The Spring and Autumn period that followed — b. Out of this carnage a very different form of state emerged as the intense con- flict among the lineages led them to social and administrative innovations aimed at securing a military advantage against their rivals.
Other states were forced to follow suit. On the following paragraphs, see generally Lewis 96; Hui 64—87; Lewis —16; Chang 40— Members of the households who did not report the crimes of another member were held jointly liable for his or her transgressions. To ensure that the maximum amount of land was brought under cultivation, Qin also penalized households with adult sons living at home.
These penalties forced sons to establish independent households and to cultivate their own allotments of land in order to support them. This reshaping of the countryside in order to ensure the maximum extraction of the resources for war was given physical expression through a system of paths forming a rectangular grid over the crop lands of the state. Qin carried out this vast effort at social and economic engineering through the creation of an equally extensive administrative apparatus.
The entire ter- ritory was divided into administrative districts, the xian, which were identical with the units of military administration and recruitment. The subunits of the xian, the jin, became the basis for local government. They were commoners, professionals who earned their positions through specialized skills and abilities and served at the pleasure of the monarch.
They also enforced a severe but appar- ently relatively impartial system of justice among the subjects. Finally, the taxes extracted from the peasantry paid not only for the bureaucracy that governed them but for a standing corps of professional soldiers that formed not only the core of the Qin military but in addition gave rulers a ready and reliable source of coercive force for use against recalcitrant subjects. Lewis In addition, because land was apparently plentiful in this period, rulers could not afford to be too harsh in their demands on their subjects, for subjects who felt themselves oppressed in one kingdom could eas- ily migrate to another where conditions were better.
The warring states established elaborate hierar- chies of ranks or titles that rewarded meritorious service to the state, particularly in war. Once again, Qin is paradigmatic. Lewis describes its system of seventeen ranks in this way: Military success measured by the number of heads of slain enemies was rewarded with promotion in rank. For the commander of a unit of a hundred men or more, rewards were given for the total number of enemy killed by his troops. Those killed in battle could have their merits transferred to their descendants. The ranks likewise entailed certain legal and religious privileges.
In the legal realm, 6. In the religious realm, they entitled the holder to privileges in burial, including the right to a higher tomb mound and the planting of more trees on the tomb. The formation of the Roman imperial state was strikingly different, despite its origins in a similar pattern of constant, intense warfare. Until 49 b. These magistrates conducted all the business of state, but because the magistracies were few, the business they conducted was quite limited.
However, despite draconian penalties for evasion, the census basically depended on the voluntary cooperation of registrants for its success. No bureaucracy was in place to enforce compliance. Similarly, to administer its towns and rural areas the Republic relied on the cooperation of local elites whose power bases were independent of the central administration.
Conscription, too, was predicated on the willingness of recruits to come forward in the absence of an extensive bureaucracy or police force to enforce compliance. Beginning in the fourth century, taxes of a sort the tributum were collected to fund the 7. Lewis — See, conveniently, Cornell —90, —30, —, —98; Forsythe —54, — In b. Warfare among the warring states of China was nearly continuous. One calculation puts the number of wars between the major states between and b. In a context of such existential danger to the states and their inability to depend on resources beyond their own frontiers for the means to defend themselves, it is not surprising that rulers adopted a strategy of maximizing the extraction of money and manpower from their own territories through the establishment of strong controls at the center, an effec- tive administrative apparatus, and the extensive regimentation of their subjects.
The pattern of Roman warfare was quite different. Rome began as the dominant city-state in Latium, and its path to dominion in Italy was largely uninterrupted despite major military challenges and occasional serious setbacks. After c. Although Hannibal did not leave Italy until b. It would be wrong, however, to downplay too much the military dangers that the Republic did face. Hui — In this era and continuing on into the third cen- tury, as Rome subdued various Italian states and others sought its protection, it struck treaties with them.
These alliances, which gradu- ally grew to encompass the whole of Italy south of the Po river, proved to be far more dependable than was the case among the warring states of China. There the existence of several relatively evenly matched competing states created endless possibilities for realignment as each sought to maximize its power or to counter perceived threats.
Consequently, Rome could bring overwhelming military force to bear in putting down attempted revolts. Only with the aid of a potent, external source of military strength, such as Pyrrhus in — b. Yet even during these relatively brief episodes, enough allies remained loyal to enable Rome ultimately to turn back the challenge and restore its hegemony. However, Roman hegemony, if distasteful and not to be preferred to freedom if the opportunity presented itself, was nevertheless in general not oppressive.
New tribes were created in which to accommodate these newly enfranchised Romans and merge them into the civic and political structure of the Republic. Yet new citizens during the later fourth, third, and second centuries were integrated on terms of complete equality with the old, and there is no evidence of resistance or rebellion among them.
Rome steadily enlarged its territory the ager Romanus until by the late third century it encompassed much of the best land in central Italy. At that date, the citizen body probably numbered around , adult males out of a total of perhaps , in the peninsula south of the Po Valley. After the Hannibalic War, however, new colonists retained or were granted Roman citizenship. Those who elected to participate in any of these colonial foundations were men who lacked adequate farms on which to support themselves and their families.
Colonies thus to some extent prevented the creation of a class of landless citizens and allies who were unable to pay taxes or serve in the army since at Rome as in the classical Greek poleis a minimum amount of wealth was required to qualify for infantry or cavalry service , while those who remained behind were spared the need to divide their holdings among too many heirs. As the result of these policies of colonization, alliance building, Brunt 44—60; however, Lo Cascio — Salmon And as in Italy, provincial administration was minimal.
Although powerful ruling dynasties were eliminated, the cities of their former kingdoms largely governed themselves and administered their own hinterlands. The governors dispatched from Rome exercised only a very general supervision, serving as judges in certain court cases, ensuring that the cities adhered to the terms of their treaties, and maintaining order in their provinces. The Republic, like the warring states of China, was able to mobilize the mass armies that fought its battles by offering incentives to those it conscripted in order to secure their willing compliance and their enthusiastic participation in combat.
Initially, these incentives seem to have taken the form of political rights. Nicolet —17, — Thereafter, no Italian opponent ever again posed a serious threat to the Republic, and it is possible that this far less threatening situation in the peninsula made aristocrats much less ready to grant political rights and pow- ers to ordinary Roman citizens. Instead, what may have come to matter far more to ordinary Romans were opportuni- ties for personal advancement through warfare. After battles generals regularly paraded their legions and presented decorations to foot-soldiers and cavalry- men who had displayed exceptional gallantry by risking their lives above and beyond the call of duty.
These awards, like the ranks of Chinese warring states, enhanced the social and particularly the religious status of those who won them.
As Polybius reports, only these sorts of decorations were permitted to be worn in religious processions. They served as permanent markers in On the concessions and the political struggles in this period generally, see Cornell —92, —68; Forsythe — As early as b. The importance of a monarch for Roman state formation is clear in the role that is attributed to King Servius Tullius in creating several of the key institutions of the Republic during the mid-sixth century b. Polybius 6. Polybius 2. Livy Polybius Cornell — It was reflected structurally in the institution of the dictatorship.
During the fourth and third centuries, military emergencies often led to the appointment of a dictator, who had full and unconstrained power in order to deal with the crisis. Ideo- logically, the need to keep such power within bounds was expressed in legends of idealized heroes like Cincinnatus, who was summoned from his farm and appointed dictator to save a Roman army that the enemy had trapped.
Together, these factors secured victory regularly enough to permit the practice of placing command in the hands of politically successful members of the aristocracy, even if they had evinced little prior aptitude for generalship or had even led Roman armies to defeat. He also altered the Roman military, Livy 3. Rosenstein See generally the chapters in Bowman et al. His aim in undertaking this latter reform was not to increase mili- tary effectiveness but to secure his own hold on power. Augustus had come to dominate Rome by gaining the loyalty of armies nominally under the authority of the senate or his rivals, and these had enabled him not only to survive the deadly struggles of the period but eventually overcome all opposition.
Augustus therefore took responsibility for paying each legionary a substan- tial bonus upon his discharge, and he retained nominal command of nearly all legions, exercising day-to-day authority through lieutenants. Soldiers therefore took an annual oath of allegiance to him personally, and in his name decorations and money donatives were awarded after successful campaigns.
These practices were continued by all subsequent emperors. Yet despite this slackening in the pace and intensity of warfare, the imperial bureaucracy at this time enjoyed a long period of sustained development and growth. Politically, his position was somewhat fragile, despite his success in destroying his military rivals, for he could not rule effectively without at least the tacit support of a senatorial aristocracy that had a visceral hatred of monar- chy and of whom at least some considered themselves as worthy of supremacy as Augustus. He also began to use men from the wealthy but nonsenatorial equestrian class as his agents in the provinces.
Over time, emperors Campbell However, these administrative reforms were by no means as thoroughgoing as those in the Chinese warring states, as the ad hoc nature of imperial provin- cial administration demonstrates. These areas, too, were controlled by imperial appointees also termed procurators. At most, one can point to a limited number of colonial founda- tions under the empire that imposed uniform survey grids on the countryside surrounding them according to which allotments were apportioned among the settlers.
However, Wallace-Hadrill —; Eck a. Eck b. Saller Those who lived under Roman rule enjoyed a wide variety of legal statuses and institutional arrangements although this was more pronounced in the eastern half of the empire than in the west, where the imperial government founded a number of cities and so was able to impose much more institutional uniformity on their internal arrangements. War and the Ruling Class War was as integral to the identity and legitimacy of the Roman aristocracy under the Republic as it was for the Zhou nobility before and during the Spring and Autumn era.
Their strategy was simply to focus their efforts primarily on military achievement, the traditional source of glory at Rome, rather than the kinds of endeavors like forensic oratory or expertise in the law that had recently come to take their places alongside a military reputation as sources of prestige at Rome. Harris 17—41, contra Eckstein — Reelection became pro- gressively rarer between and c. This system meant that generals who had demonstrated real aptitude for command only rarely got the chance to lead armies a second time. They came to the task of leading their armies untested in the exercise of overall command.
It is not surprising, there- fore, that Roman infantry tactics, based on legions arrayed in maniples, remained largely unchanged during the Republic. The Roman tactical system had to be straightforward enough to be mastered by a general who had never exercised overall command of an army before even though previous experience might have shown him how the system worked.
As a consequence, the expectation of success in battle on the basis of a proven tactical system simply reinforced the tendency to give priority to the political needs of the aristocracy rather than emphasize experience and demonstrated success in selecting generals at Rome. These men were no more military specialists than their Republican predecessors had been. They had typically held a variety of lower civilian and military posts prior to appointment as a legate of a single legion or a group of two or three legions. Roman emperors were commanders in chief of all military forces—not simply in name but often in fact.
When emperors were not present in person, overall command in such cases rested with close relatives, usually sons and successors. Indeed, the title of emperor derives from imperator, an accolade bestowed upon a victorious general by his troops under the Republic. The difference with the advent of the monarchy was that now there was only one imperator in place of the several aristocrats who might previously have laid claim to that title.
Military prestige was in turn crucial in constructing the ideological foundations of imperial rule. These men were commoners and professionals, like their counterparts in the bureaucracy. And like them, military commanders owed their positions to training and demonstrated competence. This literature stressed not only discipline in man- aging mass armies but trickery and deceit in the conduct of military operations, Campbell — Lewis 97— To further underscore that separation, the army itself used clothing, language, and rituals that were distinct from the civilian world.
Their arguments in either case began with the assertion that a virtuous ruler at the head of a properly constituted state had no need of the clever stratagems and trickery that military writers insisted that war required. Since the army was identical with the people, the proper hierarchy and formations within the army would arise natu- rally out of a properly ordered society. Soldiers would be linked by the same ties of obedience and affection that united families. This line of think- ing gradually prevailed and ultimately profoundly affected military command during the Han and later dynasties.
The triumph of apologists for autocracy over the claims of expertise initiated both the long-term devaluation of military command in China and the emergent ideal of the literary man who was able when necessary to bring his general skills to bear on military command. Because the steppe was too arid to support the agriculture that was the essential economic basis for Chinese society, the empire could not hold captured territory by establishing colonies of peasants to support garrisons of soldiers, while the cost of transporting food and other necessities from the center to large concentrations of troops on the periphery proved to be prohibitively expensive.
The position of the Xiongnu rulers depended upon their ability to redistribute the luxury goods they received from the Chinese emperors to their elite supporters and to force the emperors to open Chinese markets to ordinary Xiongnu in the frontier regions, where they could exchange their pastoral products for the grain and other goods from China that they could not grow or manufacture themselves.
And despite the fact that buying peace from the Xiongnu was deeply distasteful to the imperial court and, during the reign of the Emperor Wudi or Wu, r. Although the paths each took to reach this state of affairs were quite different in detail, they were to some extent similar in origin. In either case, the result arose from the demands of political power: in China, that meant upholding absolute supremacy of the ruler at the expense of military expertise, while at Rome a Republican form of government militated strongly against anything that could lead to the elevation of one aristo- crat to a commanding position within the state, such as the ability to monopo- lize the personal glory that accrued from victory because of a superior aptitude for leadership in war.
However, in each case objective conditions made this devel- opment possible, especially the situation on the frontiers. Neither the Han rulers War and State Formation II The changed nature of the military threat facing the Qin dynasty and its succes- sor, the Han, also culminated in the abolition of mass armies and the system of universal male conscription upon which they depended under the Eastern Han dynasty 23— c. But these outbreaks were rare thereafter, and con- sequently the need for mass armies and universal military service disappeared.
Instead, the military focus under the Han shifted to the northern frontier and the Xiongnu, against whom, as noted above, mass infantry armies were largely ineffective. Defense against this sort of highly mobile enemy required long-ser- vice garrisons to protect distant frontiers and, ideally, armies of mounted archers that could meet the Xiongnu on their own terms.
In his efforts to conquer them, the Emperor Wudi began to remake the imperial army, employing large corps of mounted troops as well as professional soldiers during his campaigns. Eastern Han emperors began therefore to employ tribes of southern Xiongnu, who had lost out in a civil war against their northern cousins and who subsequently surrendered to the emperor to oppose the latter. Chung — Consequently, they turned to plunder, and because so many of them had been brought into the empire, the garrisons proved incapable of deterring their attacks.
Further complicating the problem of defense was the fact that the Qiang had no overarching political order and did not form large confederacies as had the Xiongnu. Ultimately, as the Han government lost control of the western frontier, provincial governors began to take the initiative in defense. The forces they led began to develop into private armies under the control of great families whose loyalty was to their commanders.
The result was the breakup of the Han military system and a loss of control of warfare by the court that ultimately contributed to the collapse of the dynasty. Similar problems at Rome would prove even more dire. Major military threats on its northern frontiers had arisen In addition, the Persian Empire, created by a new and energetic dynasty in the East, the Sasanids, undertook an aggres- sive policy of territorial expansion in Syria that demanded a strong and effec- tive military response.
However, beginning in the late second century, civil war came to displace peace- ful transfers of power. The empire had never before come under such long-lasting, severe, and widespread military pressure, and its response was to undertake major changes not only in its armed forces but in its government and society as well. Even emperors themselves in the third cen- tury often came from humble backgrounds and had risen to prominence in the army through their military talents, which the military crisis had afforded them ample scope to display. These developments inaugurated a lasting split within the empire between the holders of social and cultural power, that is, members of the senatorial class, on the one hand and the military leadership on the other.
Under these new leaders, military efforts increased dramatically. Once the crisis had passed, the frontier defenses, too, were greatly augmented. At the Birley —85; Drinkwater However, this regime not only allowed for a much better defense against external threats but, equally important, simul- taneously was able to put an end to civil war for many years because a potential usurper now faced the challenge of overthrowing not one ruler but his three col- leagues as well in order to secure power. In addition, the position of the emperor himself changed in response to the military and political crisis of the third cen- tury.
Diocletian, however, inaugurated a much different stance of emperors toward their subjects. Emperors now began to live in deep seclusion. Access to them was highly restricted and surrounded by elaborate ceremony and protocol intended to evoke awe and reverence in their subjects high and low. The aim was to elevate the person of the emperor to a status beyond merely human and so in this way to ward off attempts to overthrow him on the presumption that no mere mortal could take his place. Even though the tetrarchy did not long survive its founder and civil war once again led to the establishment of a single emperor, the changes in the military and government that Diocletian put into place brought the empire a century of protection.
And the elevation of the Bowman 67—89; Campbell 12—30; Lo Cascio — Jones In order to ensure the full collection of the taxes due, the civil administration had to expand as well. More administrators further exacerbated the tax burden, and as the government met increasing resistance to its payment, it took steps to impose even greater control on civilian society. Standard units of agricultural production were established, and farmland throughout the empire was categorized in accordance with these units so that in theory every unit, although differing in size, was capable of the same output in crops.
All of this enabled the government through its census to know how much agricultural production could be expected in each region on the basis of the number of farmland and manpower units it contained, making income from the taxes levied on agriculture predictable and reliable. And the govern- ment could easily increase the amount it collected simply by increasing the levy on each unit, which the government did repeatedly during the fourth century.
As the tax burdens grew heavier and less avoidable, peasants sought to escape them by fleeing, which brought forth from the government various measures tying them to the lands they worked. Members of the provincial upper classes, who had long had the task of supervising tax collection in their locales, were now made personally liable for the taxes themselves in the event of nonpayment by the peasants. In addition, to combat the inflation that had resulted when earlier emperors, to meet their military and other expenses, had diminished the precious metal content of their coinage, Diocletian promulgated an edict that attempted to set maximum prices for all goods and services throughout the empire.
As in Han China, however, part of the problem lay in the decision of western emperors to employ troops drawn from some of the recent barbarian immigrants who served in their native formations under their own rulers. Hence, the decision to allow barbarian migrants to settle in Roman territory in exchange for military service seemed like a solu- tion to two problems at once.
Instead, in a constellation of successor states in the West, non-Roman, immigrant dynasties ruled that eventually forged ties with the old Roman rul- ing classes in their territories. In the East, however, imperial government proved much more resilient, even endeavoring to reconquer much of the West in the seventh century, until the emergence and conquests of Islam deprived it of much of its territory. Conclusion Clearly, war profoundly affected the trajectories of state-formation in China and Rome. Just as clearly, however, the severity of the threats each confronted strongly influenced those trajectories.
In Spring and Autumn and Warring States China, a multistate system in which each component enjoyed a rough parity of strength failed to reach a stable balance of power. Hui 67— Crucially, too, Rome had overthrown its monarchy trad. Thus, Rome lacked a central authority around which a bureaucratic administration could coalesce.
In the absence of a military threat that would have compelled Rome to develop in the ways that China did and because coalition building and, after b. Each militated strongly against the estab- lishment of a bureaucratic administration that could displace the vertical links of patronage that tied ordinary Romans to those in power or challenge aristo- cratic consensus in the senate as the dominant organ controlling public affairs. Not until the military and political crisis of the third century did the exigencies of war once again become the dominant force shaping state formation, forcing the creation of the sort of extensive and intrusive bureaucracy that China had developed centuries earlier.
The nature of the threats that each empire faced, their severity, and political factors also affected who was mobilized for war as well as how they were mobi- lized and led. A class of military experts developed at the same time to lead these new types of campaigns, men whose origins and training paralleled the cadres of administrative bureaucrats that were being formed at the same time. Once the armies of Qin had vanquished its rivals, however, mass levies were gradually abandoned.
Because the military challenges confronting early imperial China proved to be both intractable and yet not serious enough to threaten the existence of its government, the mass armies that its bureaucracy had been cre- ated to mobilize could be dispensed with. The elite monopoly on war ended early at Rome as well, for reasons that are not well understood.
The mass conscription that replaced it, however, took place in the context of a struggle over political rights within the community, and consequently the incentives offered in exchange for participation in war were political as well as material. Professionalization only occurred once the political landscape had drastically changed and the need of the newly established monarchy for security against potential challengers made it imperative to create a military loyal to the ruling dynasty. Bauman 3. See, for example, a classic, Wolff See, for example, Liang Shen discusses debates in China about the rule of law.
Judging from the wealth of writing on the topic from observers in both empires, no other area of statecraft generated more unease among elites who witnessed the emergence of universal rulership than ceding to the emperor and his courts the authority to determine categories of deviance and the level of punitive action necessary to maintain order and deter further violence. No imperial polity could survive by coercive methods alone, he argues, but his scheme places undue weight on the actions of rulers to manage state violence.
As she observes, informal bodies, such as clans and guilds, do not have to rationalize their decisions to touch the bodies of their members. In a deadly game in which the emperors held the highest cards, persua- sion remained the only avenue for curbing the discretionary power of rulers. As well, I am not suggesting in this chapter that in the case of China, patterns from the past have not affected attempts to foster legal reform in modern times, as I note in the conclusion.
But in the spirit of this project, I want to redirect atten- tion from the problems in the present to suggest how conceptions of law that emerged in the early empires contributed to the longevity of the imperial system. In other words, I acknowledge that what was healthy for the body politic might not have favored the individuals who supported it. Indeed, from a 5. Eisenstadt Allen Some scholars attribute this reluctance to formulate rules for imperial behavior to the persistence of republican interests embodied in the Senate;7 but in any case, as Jill Harries concludes in her study of Roman law in late antiquity, an institu- tional relationship between law and monarchy came about slowly in the process of adjusting republican ideals to the realities of empire.
Patterns of History Chinese political theory from its inception centered around a conflict between state builders bent on controlling human and material resources and local elites who understood the dangers of the interventionist state. As the warring terri- torial kingdoms encapsulated new populations after the fourth century b. The Warring States legalists did not view the state as an arena for moral teaching as did Aristotle and the Chi- nese Confucians, for example, but rather as a mechanism for exerting control through carefully calculated rewards and harsh punishments. Few arguments surface in any of the texts in favor of popular opinion as a source of law or motive for legal reform.
Therefore the wise ruler should not alter laws out of affection for the people. The people must be esteemed less than the laws. Rewards and punishments 7. For a useful analysis of how changing contemporary concerns about the state and autocratic leadership have influenced perceptions of Augustus, and how the classic works of Mommsen and Syme interpreted the transition to empire in Rome, see Raaflaub and Tober, eds.
Harries For a translation and analysis of selected chapters, see Rickett Here it refers to the natural and consistent order of things. See my discussion in Turner The Confucian pragmatist Xunzi fl. The Qin Empire should have represented the culmination of legalist efforts to create a bureaucratic state ruled by a political machine that tempered the whims of rulers.
Even the First Emperor of China, the ultimate despot in standard versions of Chinese imperial history, promised to clarify the laws, as stele inscriptions from his reign attest. The Qin example provided Han Empire builders with several advantages. The empire had engen- dered a respite, albeit short-lived, from constant warfare and had created a model for expanding institutional structures suitable for governing a centralized state.
When the Han elder statesman Lu Jia reminded the Han founder that he might have won the empire on horseback but could not govern it by force, the emperor understood the message; before he entered the rebellion against Qin, he had served as a low-level bureaucrat in the Guanzi Xunzi For a translation, see Knoblock — See my article comparing late classical Chinese and Greek notions of kingship and law in Turner See Kern This statement is from Chao Cuo in Hanshu Throughout I have used the Zhonghua edition, Beijing His roots in the state of Chu, which rivaled Qin for a well-developed legal system down to the local level as we know from recently excavated materi- als, must have also contributed to his concern with legal matters.
But there were disagreements about how to integrate holdovers from the earlier empire at the time and disagree- ments among sinologists about how much dissent from subaltern actors went on during the Han. I agree with Mark Lewis that a commitment to unity and wholeness emerged out of the constant warfare that troubled the preimperial era and with Nathan Sivin that few voices surfaced in favor of restoring a fragmented political system. Moreover, the Han emperors could not simply act as benefactors but had to take a role in legislation and execution.
As Puett argues, the tension that sur- faced in the early Han writings centered around the suspicion that the empire, while necessary, had been founded by force and sustained by principles of gov- ernance alien to the sage kings, who supposedly maintained unity by virtuous rule. But there is little evidence that any of these ambitious rebels envisioned a See Lewis ch.
Sivin 7. See, for example, Puett The universal emperorship was the prize, and as later his- tory has shown, rebels manipulated Han symbols and institutions to legitimate their own conquests. It was in dealing with these impalpable things that Caesar had failed when, with his usual consistency, he entered upon a course of action which. Warned by the failure of his adoptive father, Augustus now sought and found the solution of his problem in a peculiar compromise. Seen from the standpoint of formal constitutional law, the new order 28—27 B.
How much the Roman principate truly marked a new form of government continues to be debated, just as historians of China disagree about the extent of the difference between the late Warring States kingdoms and the Qin and Han imperial systems. But from a comparative look, it seems that Kunkel Under the Republic, except for heinous crimes such as parri- cide or acts that harmed the public welfare, citizens could decide when to invoke the law and were expected to use private means to enforce decisions.
The old system, comprising a preliminary hearing and full trial, was abandoned. The case now consisted of a cognition—an investigation by the magistrate, who conducted the whole trial and made the decision himself. Both civil and criminal processes in Roman imperial courts were initiated by the citizen, although the duty of the provincial governor to keep order and hunt down serious criminals also enabled prosecution—or rather the infliction of summary justice—by the state. Cognition, which originated as the process of adjudication conducted by provincial governors, was gradually extended to the city of Rome itself.
There republican trials by jury ceased to function adultery was probably the last to go, early in the third century c. Law and Discretion Tacitus, prominent statesman and staunch believer in the spartan values of the early Republic, regarded Augustus as a shrewd politician who ended dissention Bauman See Borkowski Harries 35—8. MacMullen — Oriental despotism was associated with eastern regimes closer to home in ancient Greece and Rome, but for later observers, imperial China has served as the pre- mier example of a system ruled by men rather than law.
Ambivalence about law and litigation that colors debates about the value of the rule of law in the West has led some legal thinkers to admire China for its cynical approach to law. For example, the legal realist Jerome Frank praised China for its disdain of litigation and commitment to the discretion of the good judge rather than black letter law.
Law is the basis for good government but the superior man is the basis for law. So when there is a superior man, the law even if sparse, will cover any situation, but when there is no superior man, even if the laws are all-embracing, they will neither apply to all situations nor be flexible enough to respond to change. Other texts from the Warring States and early Han era declare that rulers and their delegates must distinguish Annals 1.
Church and W. See Raaflaub and Toher, eds. See the discussion in Raaflaub and Tober, eds. See, for example, MacMullen Frank See Dworkin for an argument about the importance of judicial attitude rather than rules; H. Xunzi 8. Plutarch, Solon 18 trans. Shang Yang d. Only through law can this be accomplished. Peerenboom has argued that Huang Lao philosophy, a pragmatic Daoism that prevailed in the early Han as a corrective to the meddling policies attributed to the Qin regime, represented a theoretical constraint on the ruler by bind- ing him to a predetermined moral order.
Laws and regulations are of the utmost importance in governing because there is no confusion in the government that uses them and no disorder once the laws and regulations are produced. If you are public- spirited and without private bias, and your rewards and punishments are trusted, you will have good government. But the case for natural law as a check on power was rarely made in recorded debates in the Han sources.
In light of how often the decisions of sage kings were used to critique the cur- rent state of affairs, much more deeply ingrained was the belief that there was no escaping the fact that human actions did, in fact, affect the workings of the natural world.
- Psychopomp Halloween Special 2013?
- Breathing and Walking Around.
- Zu: Tommaso Campanellas Der Sonnenstaat (German Edition)?
- Cuentos de la Abuela Ana. (Spanish Edition).
Jingfa Lushi chunqiu 1. For a translation and study of this text, see Knoblock and Riegel See Shangjunshu jiegu 4. See Turner See Peerenboom For a more complete discussion of this conception as one possible component of the rule of law, see Turner Lushi chunqiu 3. See Sivin It seems that a larger concep- tion of law emerged under the later empire in Rome. Writers such as Ammianus and Symmachus demonstrated their understanding that emperors should not stand above the laws, as their critiques of individual emperors reveal.
The Emperor and the Law Textbook accounts of Roman and Chinese imperial law point to the emperor as the supreme legislator. In the early empire, according to Tacitus, the emperors personally directed the legal system but at least paid lip service to the Senate. The Han emperors, more sequestered within the palace walls as the dynasty matured, appear in the histories most often to delegate the dangerous business of controlling the imperial relatives, clarifying See Seager See Harries 6.
Harries 7. Harries 20 and But in general, a deep-seated wariness of direct, personal involvement in legal change seems to have characterized Han imperial attitudes toward legislation. While a coherent code did not appear until the Tang Dynasty, laws proliferated over the course of the Han. We learn about legislation and reform mostly from negative portraits of bureaucrats at work. Du Zhou d. So how can the old laws be appropriate for the times? He was castigated by his contemporaries for tam- pering with the old laws, hated by the imperial princes for impinging on their privileges, and eventually forced to commit suicide.
Chao Cuo d. Shiji Zhonghua edition, Beijing Shiji See the discussion by Puett of Chao Cuo and other reformers. By the reign of Theodosius — c. The history of the reign of the third Han emperor, Wendi r. But law was not his only concern: tension within the imperial clan for favors and terri- tory, succession problems, an unstable frontier, and the need to establish a viable institutional and ritual apparatus consonant with his position as head of state all demanded attention.
What is interesting in the Chinese case is just how many men of ability believed that the good of the state must take precedence over the interest of rulers and their kin and who then rose to the dangerous challenge. Maine 20— Hanshu See Turner Gottschang To allow even one deviation in the laws would cause them to no longer be taken seriously. And then how would the people know how to behave? But once the business of assigning the correct punishment entered his purview, he was bound to uphold his duty to maintain impartiality. May I ask the Emperor to consider these consequences?
The Critics The most obvious critics in the early Roman Empire were associated with the Stoic school. When Nero attempted to deflect a move to resurrect maiestas treason as a punishable offense, the Stoic, Thrasea, opposed the death pen- alty, not on grounds of clemency, but to guard legality. To those Stoics who disliked that sort of ruler in principle, the leges were the one sure shield against tyranny.
See his translated biography in Watson — Veyne These men who are to be executed as crim- inals on your orders will be honored by the Christians as martyrs. Hamilton , — Harries 40— See also Harries Hanshu 3—4. Perhaps, however, this is a positive feature. They do not paint a uniform picture, but they are striking because they represent something of great importance to their recorders.
Sima Qian and his father created a fragmented narrative about the fall of Qin and the rise of Han, but the history is constructed in part as a message that the failed policies of the Qin regime should serve as a warning to Han emperors who planned to follow in its path. If the martial and civil elements are not in balance, even law abiding people will be nervous about remaining steadfast. But in line with the times, the later historian displays a far more tolerant stance toward harsh punishments than the Sima family, despite his Confucian leanings. Robinson 5. His debt to Taci- tus is not clear,57 but he seems less concerned with liberty as a general principle and more preoccupied with modes of behavior.
As Seager concludes in a study of the language of Ammianus, for him a civilized man must know his place in the world and must refrain from giving way to anger. Deadly Consequences In imperial Rome as in China, most writers accepted the need for the death pen- alty. But the death penalty itself was never rejected outright under the Republic. Under the empire, debates, according to Bauman, centered on methods of execution and elite worries that status would no longer serve as a protection from dishonorable punishment.
Discretion should be exercised, he argued, before the sentence, with external factors, such as the circumstances of the crime and the state of mind of the accused, weighed carefully. But he was ambivalent about sanctioning too much latitude for the judge even if equity might be better served than under the letter of the law. See Matthews — Seager See Ammianus Marcellinus, Bauman ch. Bauman 78— It seems that his concern rested not so much on the treatment of the victims of violence as on the character of the men who decided when to use force. Equity could be absorbed into the private law without much discomfort but at the criminal level it threatened the very foundations.
Other realist texts strongly encouraged that pubishments be implemented consistently in order to discourage deviant behavior. The most important thinker of Han times, Dong Zhongshu c. It was essential that each element in the three different spheres should keep to its own designated function, within its own boundary, for if it did not the entire system was adversely affected.
Bauman — Yates Jia Yi — b. If the punishment is not right and you kill one person [not liable for crime] your crime will be reported to highest Heaven. The trial involved all four hundred members of his household, including his slaves, who could be tortured and put to death as accomplices, no matter what their individual role in the crime.
There is an element of injustice in every precedent. But the public interest outweighs that of individuals. Still, the party which voted for their execution prevailed. Shiji — Xinshu 7. But the law itself was not debated or changed, and Seneca, who had advised the young Nero earlier to favor humane decisions, remained silent. Surprisingly, given the presence of the emperor, and the distaste raised by this mass punishment, Tacitus does not mention fear of odium. As Bauman contends, it was not so much pity or dread of odium at work as special economic interests.
The scarcity of mention of the fear of odium as a check on unwarranted cruelty implies that, as Robinson observes, no tradition from the republican period attached religious meaning to punishments, and when the emperor became the supreme executioner the link remained weak,74 at least until the era of the Christian emperors.
But the treason law was also a means by which the elite was brought under increasingly strict control by an ever more overt autocracy. Annals Bauman 86; Annals, See Robinson Wendi in b. Even Roman emperors with a reputation for excess, Caligula and Nero, for example, displayed a lenient attitude toward possible cases of treason. In the case of one or two accused persons, this may be the right course. He who pardons the Senate condemns the Senate. According to Garnsey, when the welfare and dignity of the emperor mirrored the health of the state, no limits existed to determine how treason might be construed.
The early philosophical treatises that called for consistency in punish- ments did little to temper the brutal, nasty, and short lives of anyone who attracted the displeasure of the strongmen who ruled without any need to legitimate their decisions. By Han times, once the Liu dynasty established itself as legitimate, it was its founder, precedents, and temples, as well as reigning emperors, that Robinson Garnsey In common in both empires is that ambiguity plagued interpretations of treason charges. The Han histories provide examples of the kinds of acts that could be punished as treason.
A marquis who offended impe- rial dignity by failing to dismount at the palace gate was accused of disrespect [da buching] and demoted. Cursing the emperor con- stituted the greatest perversion [da ni] and was punished in the case of thirteen marquises by slicing in half at the waist.
The emperor demanded the heaviest pen- alty, the execution of the condemned man and three generations of his family, but Zhang argued that the lighter punishment of execution in the market place should apply only to the responsible person. Finally, the emperor agreed that Zhang was technically correct, but made clear that the light sentence could not erase so egregious an offense against a sacred place.
Moreover, the Qin and Han passion for standardization did not apply to collective punishments; as Lewis shows, the members of the descent group implicated in such punishment var- ied. It was not only rulers who acted arbitrarily; many tales in the sources show how men of like status harmed one another with cre- ative methods—boiling alive was one technique that enjoyed a certain popular- ity. Imperial worries about the use of magic and divination surfaces in both empires and is worthy of more study.
The Han sources reveal how carefully the emperors approached the practice of mutilating the criminal body. Although later they might desire to correct their faults and renew themselves, that road can never be followed. Knowing full well the arguments he would hear against the more benign solution, he assured the bureaucrats that the methods he proposed had not in fact created disorder in the utopian past under the rule of sage kings. Besides, he told them, the recent trend toward harsh punishments had not suppressed crime. See Hanshu for a more complete account. The classic work on slavery in Han times remains that of Wilbur , and much work needs to be done in light of new materials on this issue.
Government slaves were viewed as resources, and therefore, their fate was the business of the state. The relatives of criminals punished under the penalty of collective punishments were often made government slaves, for example. The Qin and presumably the Han legal systems allowed for redemption, by reduction in rank, or substitution. But the state was careful not to be cheated, and a woman, unless skilled at some work that made her valuable, would not be equal to an able-bodied man in the equation.
Xunzi 6. In fact, however, mutilation was never eliminated, beatings often mangled or killed people, and the debates about changing the laws regarding the harsh punishments continued throughout the early imperial period. This very calculated move to appease these troublesome elites was not accompanied by a proposal to eliminate the death penalty—but to allow them the privilege of suicide rather than mutilation or execution. Indeed, one of the few arguments for reform through punishment in the ancient world is found in Plato, but the Romans did not adopt his vision. The focus in both empires remained on the body.
See Sanft For an analysis of changes in ideas about the relation between the inner and physical world of humans and their interactions with the outside world between the time of the Warring States and the early empire in China, see Csikszntmihalyi