Polybius and Rome: The Histories, Book 6
POLYBIUS envisages the writing of Book 6 as a crucial part of the task he sets himself in the preface of his work – that of showing his readers by what means and by what system of government Rome achieved universal dominion. Book 6 addresses the second of these two topics. In it, in addition to discussing the political structure of Rome and the organization of the Roman army, Polybius deals with a wide range of elements that form part of the public life of the citizen. In this paper I examine Polybius’ presentation of the Romans in Book 6, paying particular attention to the ways in which his analysis sheds light on those aspects of their mentality that contributed to their success.
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