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COURSE NAME: "History of Ancient Rome and Italy"
SEMESTER & YEAR: Summer Session II 2018

INSTRUCTOR: Thomas Govero
EMAIL: [email protected]
HOURS: MTWTH 11:10 AM-1:00 PM
OFFICE HOURS: By arrangement including weekends

This course surveys the history of ancient Rome and Italy, focusing on the origins and metamorphoses of Rome from its archaic foundations as an Italic-Latinate kingship to an imperial city. The course examines the establishment, expansion, and conflicts of the Republican period; the political and cultural revolution of the Augustan ‘Principate’; the innovations of the High Empire; and the transition into Late Antiquity. Course materials include the writings of ancient authors in translation (these may include Polybius, Sallust, Cicero, Livy, Augustus, Suetonius, and/or Tacitus) as well as modern historians and archaeologists, along with considerations of Roman art, architecture, and archaeology.
This is a survey course of the history of ancient Rome and Italy.  The initial focus will be on the origins and metamorphoses of Rome from the period of its archaic
foundations (c. 753 BCE) as an Italic-Latin kingdom much influenced by the neighboring Etruscans and Greeks.  Subsequently, it will examine the foundation of
the Republic (510 BCE) and its constiutional and legal institutions in the context of the Patrician - Plebian rivalries and controversies.(to 396 BC).  Roman expansion
in Italy and then abroad (unification of Italy, Punic Wars and expansion in Macedonia, Greece and Asia Minor) will introduce the early period of the Roman Empire.
There will be considerable emphasis on the collapse of the Roman Republic (133 BCE - 31 BCE) and the civil wars which changed the its structure and constitution.
The course will contitue examing the Augustan Principate (27 BCE - 285 CE) as it evolves during the reigns of a number of emperors and finally becomes the
Dominate (285 CE).  Finally, there will be some attention to the rise of Christianity under Constantine (313 CE - 336 CE) and the collapse of Roman central power
in Western Europe but its continuation in the Eastern Mediterranean.  Readings in translation other than the textbook will be drawn from Livy, Polybius, Tacitus,
Suetonius and other original documents such as the "Res Gestae Divi Augusti".
By the end of the course, you should:

.  Be familiar with the Mediterranean topography, taxonimy, geology and human settlement patterns with some details of  their cultures.

.  Be familiar with the major periods of Roman history, their principal figures and the primary developments in politics, the economy, social factors.

.   Be familiar with the philosophical, religious and legal developments of the Roman Republic and their developments in the Empire.

.   Have a greater interest in Roman history and society.

.   Have improved skills in critical analysis of sources, more lucid written and oral expression and methos of interpreting historical documentation.
Book TitleAuthorPublisherISBN numberLibrary Call NumberComments
Ancient RomeThomas MartinYale U. Press978-0-300-19831.7 Will order from Almost Corner

Four tests (one per week) 40%
Resumes on readings and lectures 20%
Final exam paper and oral presentation 30%
Participation (present with comments and questions) 10%

AWork of this quality directly addresses the question or problem raised and provides a coherent argument displaying an extensive knowledge of relevant information or content. This type of work demonstrates the ability to critically evaluate concepts and theory and has an element of novelty and originality. There is clear evidence of a significant amount of reading beyond that required for th
BThis is highly competent level of performance and directly addresses the question or problem raised.There is a demonstration of some ability to critically evaluatetheory and concepts and relate them to practice. Discussions reflect the student’s own arguments and are not simply a repetition of standard lecture andreference material. The work does not suffer from any major errors or omissions and provides evidence of reading beyond the required assignments.
CThis is an acceptable level of performance and provides answers that are clear but limited, reflecting the information offered in the lectures and reference readings.
DThis level of performances demonstrates that the student lacks a coherent grasp of the material.Important information is omitted and irrelevant points included.In effect, the student has barely done enough to persuade the instructor that s/he should not fail.
FThis work fails to show any knowledge or understanding of the issues raised in the question. Most of the material in the answer is irrelevant.

This is an intense course and even missing one two-hour session is the
equivalent of missing and entire week of the normal semester.  You
are expected to participate regularly in this course and if you are absent
you can hardly participate.

PROTOCOLS: 1.  COMING AND GOING:  Please - no leaving and returning to the classroom during the class session.
This is very distracting, noisy and disturbing.  Please think about your needs before you come to class.

2. If you are more than 5 mins late, then please do not come to the class.  This is also disturbing and interrupts the continuity of
the class.

3.If you are going to be absent (3 maximum), please inform me or the Faculty Support Office.

As stated in the university catalog, any student who commits an act of academic dishonesty will receive a failing grade on the work in which the dishonesty occurred. In addition, acts of academic dishonesty, irrespective of the weight of the assignment, may result in the student receiving a failing grade in the course. Instances of academic dishonesty will be reported to the Dean of Academic Affairs. A student who is reported twice for academic dishonesty is subject to summary dismissal from the University. In such a case, the Academic Council will then make a recommendation to the President, who will make the final decision.
John Cabot University does not discriminate on the basis of disability or handicap. Students with approved accommodations must inform their professors at the beginning of the term. Please see the website for the complete policy.



Monday, July 3:

.  First class:    Review syllabus, logistics, assessment


The Mediterranean environment and setting:  topography, taxonomy, geography. Italy in

   that environment:  topography, geography, geology, peoples, products.  The Mediterranean, then

   and now. 

.  How and what we know about the ancient Roman world:  sources and reception.

.  Assignment:  Ancient Rome (AR),  Introduction and Background.    Livy,  "The Rise of Rome",  Books I, II

   (Guidelines and criteria for these readings will be discussed in class.)


Tuesday,  July 4:  Holiday

Wednesday, July 5

.  Pre-Roman peoples of Italy:  the Villanovans, Etruscans and Greeks:  cultural developments and

   influences on the Romans.  Roman Values.                                         Assignment:  AR Chapter 2

    Discussion:  AR Chapter 1,2

.  Resume writing.


Suggested Visits:  Museo delle Terme (opposite Termini Station, Piazza dei Cinquecento)  Early Rome


Tarquinia, Cerveteri,  (Towns north of Rome, formerly Etruscan, with extensive Necropoleis. 

Castelli Romani,  Castel Gondolfo (Monte Albano)



    Thursday, July 6;

.  .  Review and discussion of Livy,  Book I:  Institutionalizing early Roman society.  Writing, legends and

   history.  Stoic history.  The Regnum (Early, seven kings of Rome)


   Friday, July 7:  Make-up day


.   Test no. 1 .  Assignment:  AR: , Chapter 3

.   Early Rome and Livy (continued)


Monday,  July 10

.   Review and discussion of Livy, Books II & III:  Foundations of Republican institutions/constitution

    Writing, legend and history.  Stoicism and stoic influences on Livy's history.  The Regnum:  the Seven 

     Kings of Rome.  


.  The conflict of the orders, legislation and laws in the conflict.  The unification of Italy under the

   Roman Republic. 

.  Review of AR: , Chapter 3

.  Assignment:  AR: Chapter 4,5


Tuesday,  July 11:

.  Topics papers and oral pesentations:.  Due:  Friday, August 3

   (Guidelines and criteria for content and style of these presentations will be distributed in class)

.  Roman expansion in the Mediterranean:  the four conflicts with Carthage (Punic Wars);    

.  Reveiw of AR:  Chapter 4                                           Assignment:  AR, Chapters 5, 6

.  Resume writing


Wednesday, July 12:

.  The Punic/Carthaginian Wars:  Hannibal in Italy.  Consequences of the wars:  agriculture, demography,

   slavery, latifundia, political. 

.   Assignment:  AR, Chapter 6

.   Hellenism and Stoicism at Rome:  a cultural revolution among the elite.






  Thursday, July 13:




Roman domestic politics and economy:  Imperial  Expansion in Macedonia, Greece and Asia Minor   Slave revolts, The Gracchan reforms. 

In-Class Reading:  Polybius,  "Histories"  Book VI (selections on the constitution of the Roman Republic)



   Monday, July 17

Resume writing.

The Collapse of the Roman Republic  1:  Marius to Pompey.  The Social Wars


  Tuesday, July  18:

Test No. 3

The Collapse of the Roman Republic 2:  Pompey - Octavian.  The Career of Cicero.

Assignment:  AR:  Chapters 6,7;  Sallust,  "Cataline" (selections).


Suggested visits:  Forum Romanum, Forum of Julius Caesar


   Wednesday, July 19:

Transformation to the Pincipate:  Octavian, Antony, Cleopatra.  

In-Class Reading:  "Res Gestae Divi Augusti"


Thursday, July 20


The early Julio-Claudians:  Augustus - Nero

Assignment:  AR:  Chapter 7;  Suetonius, Tacitus, Life of a Julio-Claudian


Wednesday,  Monday, July 24:


The early Julio-Claudians (con't): Augustus - Nero


Tuesday, July 25:

Resumes on emperors:  oral reports based on resumes.

Assignment:   AR  Chapter 8

Discussion of Fianl Paper:  Due:  Friday, August 7


 Wednesday, July 25:

Test No. 4

Evolution of the Principate:  Nero - Trajan.  The end of imperial expansion.

Social and economic considerations of empire:  slavery, ethnicity, urbanism, legal developments (Jurists)


Suggested Visits:  Colosseum, Forum Romanum, Palatine Hill, Museo Altemps (near Piazza Navona), Capitoline Museums (on Campidoglio),

Museo dell'Archeologia Romana (Palazzo Massimo, in front of Termini station), Meseum Montemartini (Via Ostiense), Vatican Museums,

Porta Maggiore. 


 Thursday, July 26:

Evolution of the Principate:  Hadrian - Alexander Severus:  Hadrian and Hadrianic architecture, Marcus Aurelius, the Severan dynasty and

militarization of the Roman state.

Assignment:  AR:  Chapters 9,10

In-Class Reading:  Aelius Aristides, "On Rome"


Suggested Visits:  Imperial Fora (Transitoria, Trajan's Forum, Pantheon, Tivoli (Hadrian's Villa), Parco degli Aquedotti)


  Monday, July 30:

Resume writing

The end of the Severan dynasty and the 3rd century chaos to 285.  Diocletian and the Dominate:  Structural reforms,  growth and  repression of Christianity,

Division of the Empire. 


 Tuesday , July 31:

The rise of Constantine:  Constantines career and impact on the Empire:  Final division of the Empire;  Edict of Milan (313),  Constantine and the

Christian church.  The "Donation of Constantine". 


Suggested Visits:  St Peters Basilica, San Giovanni and area, Santa Croce in Gerusaleme, Ponte Milvio, Arch of Constantine, Mausoleum of Constanza (Nomentana)


  Wednesday, August 1::

From Constantine to Romulus Augustulus:  The collapse of the Western Roman Empire, role of the Gothic et al invaisions,  Christiian assumption of power.

The Eastern Roman Empire and Byzantium.  Final summation of Roman society and culture.



 Thursday, August 2

  Summary and Review:

Friday, August 3

Final papers due.   Oral presentations of papers.

Resumes due


                                                                                                             HAVE A GOOD REST OF THE SUMMER