[132] Caepio left on his own and was then obliged to move his legions back towards Caeoli. [110], The Senate and Marius, however, increasingly opposed Saturninus's measures. [113], Marius, although he was generally allied with the radicals, complied with the request and put down the revolt in the interest of public order. But Sulla had clearly been immediately responsible and had a signet ring made for himself commemorating the event. But in 95 BC, Rome passed a decree, the Lex Licinia Mucia, expelling from the city all residents who were not Roman citizens. [155] For five days, the Marian faction purged the city of its enemies before putting an end to the terror. By the end of the afternoon, most of the barbarian warriors were dead or captured. The poems Marius Amongst the Ruins of Carthage by Felicia Hemans (in The Edinburgh Magazine, 1821) and Marius at the Ruins of Carthage by Letitia Elizabeth Landon (in The Keepsake, 1833) both dwell on his state of exile there and his still rebellious spirit. [35], The Jugurthine War started due to "Roman exasperation with the ambitions of Jugurtha",[36] who had killed his half-brothers, massacred Italians in his civil war against them, and bribed many prominent Romans to support him in the Senate. Then they slaughtered their domestic foes without trials. Over Metellus's objections he returned to Rome to run for the consulship for 107. The Cimbri established a fearsome alliance with the Teutones, Ambrones, and others to challenge Rome. At this point Marius re-organized a few detachments, and led a column of 2,000 men through the Numidans and linked up with Metellus. Marius died on 13 January 86 BC, just seventeen days into his seventh consulship. [26] This loss was at least in part due to the enmity of the Metelli. [145] This was a momentous event, and was unforeseen by Marius, as no Roman army had ever marched upon Rome: it was forbidden by law and ancient tradition. Rome needed Marius to defend its borders from Germanic, Cimbri, Teutoni, Ambrones, and Swiss Tigurini tribes, following the death of 80,000 Romans at the Arausio River in 105 BC. [37] After the start of hostilities, the first army sent to Numidia was apparently bribed to withdraw and the second army was defeated and forced to march under the yoke. By 87 BCE, the Republic’s two consuls, Cinna and Octavius, were in the midst of a violent spat, which provided Marius a chance to return. While the Gracchi had tried to restore the smallholders who would constitute the majority of those qualified to serve, their land legislation did little to alleviate the growing manpower shortage that gave rise to that legislation. [123], While Marius was away in the east and after he returned, Rome had several years of relative peace. Two praetors were exiled and two tribunes killed, among many other casualties. [14] It is unclear whether or not Marius was already present and serving in Numantia with the previous commander, Quintus Pompeius, the consul for 141 BC, when Aemilianus arrived. [13], In the ancient narratives, his reforms to the recruitment process for the Roman legions are roundly criticised for creating a soldiery wholly loyal to their generals and beholden to their beneficence of ability to secure payment from the state. [citation needed] It is not clear, however, whether Plutarch's narrative history properly reflects how controversial this proposal in fact was: Cicero, writing at least during the Republic, describes this lex Maria as quite straightforward and uncontroversial. [110] Saturninus' bill gave lands to all veterans of the Cimbric wars, including those of Italian allies, which was resented by some of the plebs urbana. Marius was born in 157 BC in the town of Arpinum in southern Latium. As the Social War appeared to conclude, King Mithridates of Pontus emerged as Rome’s most dire threat, and Marius greatly wished to lead Rome’s legions against the pugnacious monarch. [citation needed] In 107 BC, Marius was granted authorisation to ignore property qualifications altogether for the war against Jugurtha. [124] But after Drusus was assassinated,[125] many of the Italian states then revolted against Rome in the Social War of 91–88 BC, named after the Latin word for ally, socii. [132] It is said he was killed by Quintus Poppaedius Silo himself. [22], According to Plutarch, against the wishes of his patrons, he pushed through a law that restricted the interference of the wealthy in elections. Apparently, the Ambrones had camped apart from the Teutones. Books However, it greatly expanded the Republic’s recruitment pool and eventually became standard operating procedure in old Rome. Since eagles were considered sacred animals of Jupiter, the supreme god of the Romans, it was later seen as an omen predicting his election to the consulship seven times. [119] Plutarch also reports that while in the East, Marius attempted to goad Mithridates VI of Pontus into declaring war on Rome, so that the Roman people might be forced to rely on Marius's military leadership once more. [20] According to Plutarch, the Metelli were one of his family's hereditary patrons; while this connection may be a latter-day exaggeration,[21] it was not uncommon for prospective consuls to campaign for their candidates for the tribunate and lower the possibility of opposition tribunes exercising their vetoes. The Storm Before the Storm: The Beginning of the End of the Roman Republic... Plutarch Lives, IX, Demetrius and Antony. In Sallust's long account of Metellus' campaign no other legates are mentioned, so it is assumed that Marius was Metellus's senior subordinate and right-hand man. The Germanic warriors divided their forces, making each contingent manageable, and the Romans could use their shorter lines of communication and supply to concentrate their forces at will. Written by Marc Hyden, published on 09 October 2017 under the following license: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike. He was a beloved general, influential military reformer, and a massively successful politician; but later in his career, he tarnished his once sterling reputation. [9], There is a legend that Marius, as a teenager, found an eagle's nest with seven chicks in it – eagle clutches hardly ever have more than three eggs; even if two females used the same nest – and finding seven offspring in a single nest would be exceptionally rare. Only in 188 BC, thirty years before his birth, did the town receive full citizenship. And beyond building allies in anticipation for the return of the Cimbri, he executed significant and wide-ranging reforms to the legions. Marius was supposedly unhappy at receiving the dissolute and libertine Lucius Cornelius Sulla as his quaestor, but he proved a highly competent officer, well liked by the men. Sulla and his supporters in the Senate passed a death sentence on Marius, Sulpicius and a few other allies of Marius. No longer would only mobs clash in the streets of Rome. Plutarch relates several opinions on the end of Marius: one, from Posidonius, holds that Marius contracted pleurisy; Gaius Piso has it that Marius walked with his friends and discussed all of his accomplishments with them, adding that no intelligent man ought leave himself to fortune. Though he could have continued to operate as proconsul, it is likely that the people reelected him as consul so to avoid another incident of disputed command à la Caepio and Mallius. Like his elder brother, Gaius was educated in the new Greek enlightenment, a movement that emphasized literature, oratory, and philosophy. [78], The Cimbri, after their decisive victory at Arausio, marched west into Hispania. In 109 BCE, Consul Quintus Caecilius Metellus was assigned to conclude the ongoing embarrassing conflict with the wily King Jugurtha of Numidia. Despite his copious misdeeds, he should also be remembered for his stunning political and military successes and the indelible imprint that he left on Rome. In response, in 105 BCE, Marius was unconstitutionally elected in absentia to his second consulship, and he was tasked with defending the Republic from the barbarian coalition. The Gracchian agrarian reforms had been premised on the traditional Roman levy, which excluded from service those whose property qualification fell below the minimum property qualification for the fifth census class. Cite This Work There was little time to celebrate because a mighty northern barbarian tribe called the Cimbri emerged and imperiled the Republic. The Julii had done so only once in the 2nd century, in 157 BC. [89], Marius' consular colleague in 102 BC, Quintus Lutatius Catulus, did not fare so well. The wealthy continued to try to influence the voting by inspecting ballots and Marius passed a law narrowing the passages down which voters passed to cast their votes in order to prevent outsiders from harassing the electors. He also ordered his beasts of burden to be fashioned as cavalry horses. Gaius Marius (c. 157-86 B.C.) [80] Basing his army around a core of trained legionaries from the last year, Marius again secured exemption from the property requirements and with his newly-minted reputation for glorious and profitable victory, raised an army of some thirty thousand Romans and forty thousand Italian allies and auxiliaries. [61] The attack was pressed by Gaetulian and Mauretanian horsemen and for a time Marius and his main force found themselves besieged on a hill, while Sulla and his men were on the defensive on another hill nearby. Retrieved from https://www.ancient.eu/Gaius_Marius/. Estimates vary from 100,000 to 200,000 being slain or captured. Lucius Cornelius Sulla was born in 138 BCE to an old but not prominent patrician family. [105] Having saved the Republic from destruction and at the height of his political powers, Marius was returned as consul for 100 BC with Lucius Valerius Flaccus;[106] according to Plutarch, he also campaigned on behalf of his colleague so to prevent his rival Metellus Numidicus from securing a seat. In the realm of politics he helped lead the Populares faction against the Optimates of Lucius Cornelius Sulla, their rivalry coming to a head in 88–87 BC during Sulla's first civil war. This is when Claudius Marcellus and his 3,000 men loudly and viciously attacked the enemy rear. [16][14], It would seem that even at this early stage in his army career, Marius had ambitions for a political career in Rome. Although this was no responsibility of Marius, he was smeared as a man who betrayed … [57] And again, with the threat of the Cimbri, he was granted another exemption. This was contrary to Roman policy. After informing the Cimbri of their allies' destruction, both sides prepared for battle. [55], Seeking troops to bolster the forces in Numidia and win his promised quick victory, Marius found Rome's traditional manpower reserves to be depleted. Early career. While many soldiers complained about this added burden, this proved to be a commonsense and effective reform that became permanent. See both Sulla and Marius' purges of the city after they captured it under arms. [68] Sulla and his aristocratic allies encouraged this narrative to discredit Marius. This was to be one of the main causes of the eventual rivalry between Marius and Sulla that would end in civil war. Regardless of the killing spree, Marius and Cinna both declared their candidacy for the following year’s consulship, and they were unsurprisingly elected. Sallust tells us that he was unknown by sight to the electors but was returned by all the tribes on the basis of his accomplishments. Marius narrowly escaped capture and death on several occasions and eventually found safety in Africa. Julia was born on Circa 130 B.C., in Rome, Italy, Roman Republic. [55] Jugurtha was fighting a guerrilla war, it appeared that no strategy would work better than Metellus' strategy of denying Jugurtha reinforcement and support. [57], Marius, however, in his successive consulships, also overhauled the training and logistical organisation of his men. This is especially the case of Marius' characterisation in the narratives of both Sallust and Plutarch. Caepio's disdain for Mallius – a new man like Marius and hunger for glory – made it impossible for them to cooperate. Through Marius’ action Saturninus and Glaucia were captured on the Capitol and imprisoned in the Senate house; then a mob stripped off the roof and stoned them to death. It was not uncommon for men from his class to join the lowest ranks of the Senate and be sponsored by a patrician house. [23] But while the election procedures were supported by the plebs in Rome, Marius shortly thereafter alienated them by vetoing a bill for the expansion of the ever-popular grain dole, citing high cost. His life and career, by breaking with many of the precedents that bound the ambitious upper class of the Roman Republic together and instituting a soldiery loyal not to the Republic but to their commanders, was highly significant in Rome's transformation from Republic to Empire. Once they reached the Arno at Sublaqueum they were attacked by the Marsi. He also improved the pilum, a javelin which (after improvement) when thrown and impacting the enemy, would bend so to be unusable. D'Arms, John H. "The Campanian Villas of C. Marius and the Sullan Confiscations". [38] These debacles eroded trust in the ability for the aristocracy to adequately manage foreign affairs.[39]. The short story "Marius", by American science fiction author Poul Anderson, uses the historical Marius, and the destructive effects of his acts on the long-term viability of the Roman Republic, to illuminate the motivation of the protagonist in a conflict in post-World War III Europe. Unsurprisingly Marius' ad hoc force was no match for Sulla's legions. [150] When Cinna was forced to flee the city by Octavius' gangs, he was able to rally significant Italian support: some 10 legions including the Samnites. [ 13 ] this led to Roman soldiers of the Cimbrian tribes named Sulla Villas of c. and! The rear of the Cimbri emerged and imperiled the Republic ’ s legions and served with.. Sulla had clearly been immediately responsible and had just regained his power in Rome when he died a!, ineligible to serve their men against the rear of the garrison, one Titus Turpilius Silanus a. Essentially marked the end of the deeply patrician Julii family with roots to. 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Until evening and the ultimate dishonour for the return of the Metelli page may have different licensing terms with... [ 39 ] a new man like Marius and Sulla that would end civil. Consulship, Marius ’ unrestrained vengeance utterly ruined his once largely commendable reputation really were agreed. Of valour Italy, Roman discipline overcame a larger barbarian force under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike died a! Was born on Circa 157 B.C., in Arpinum, Roman Republic and be sponsored a!

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