71-73 Spartacus – the slave war in Italy
Spartacus – Thracian gladiator, Capua. Gladiators escaped from the training school, collected
roughly 70,000 followers.
-Crassus and Pompey competed to subdue the revolt; each wanted to be the foremost man,
Marcus Licinius Crassus (115-53)
-consul 70 BC (with Pompey)
Both Pompey and Crassus wanted consulship in 70:
-Crassus – old enough, had already held praetorship, 2 year interval since last role
-Pompey – too young, 36; never held quaestor- or praetorship. Elected anyway, first breech in
Crassus and Pompey, now allied, disbanded their forces and cooperated with each other.
-Completed the overthrow of the Sullan constitution – ironic, since they were both originally
strong Sullan supporters.
-back in 75 – consul G. Cotta – AURELIAN LAW – overturned one of Sulla’s reforms, tribunes
can again hold higher magistracies. Also, jurors to be drawn equally from THREE groups: 1/3
senators, 1/3 equestrains, 1/3 tribunes of the treasury. NOW 2/3 of jurors were non-senatorial
-Tribuni Aerarii, tribunes of the treasury, wealth between 300,000-600,000 – wealth similar to
equitates, similarly represented the business side of society. They were non-senatorial.
Now, in 70 – ALL powers tribunes restored, including tribunician veto and ability to introduce
Pompey wanted tribunes to have power to pass legislation to secure extraordinary power for
himself if needed.
Two consuls also re-established the reelction of censors – hadn’t happened since Sulla
70 – trial of Gaius Verres, governor of Sicily 73-71. Excessively plundered his province.
Charged with extortion. Sicilians had entrusted prosecution of case to Marcus Tullius Cicero
(106-43) (“famous famous”), novus homo from Arpinum (same as Marius). Broke into
consulship by following legal career instead of political. Cicero had served as quaestor in Sicily
Verres was represented by Quintus Hortensius Hortalus, an optimate. Cicero was successful in his prosecution – won the case for the Sicilians, made a name for
himself by beating the amazing advocate Hortensius. Became leading legal representative in
69 – Both Pompey and Crassus denied pro-consulary appointments. Stayed in Rome, waiting for
a military opportunity. Pompey got the opportunity – needed to suppress the Cilician pirates
again. Marcus Antonius was unsuccessful; in 69, Matellus was sent out. He subjugated island of
Crete, made it a Roman province****
But this didn’t really stop the pirates. They were even raiding Italy, and Rome’s harbour of
Ausculum. This interrupted Rome’s grain supply, required swift action. Needed commander with
supreme power to operate against them anywhere in Mediterranean.
67 – Lex Gabinia – by tribune Gabinius - appointed an individual of consular rank with
unlimited power for 3 years to rid the waters of this menace. He could recruit an army, equip a
fleet, and nominate legates.
Senate hated this tribunician bill, gave too much power to one man. But Cicero and Gaius Julius
Caesar (100-44) supported it. Bill didn’t specify who would get this power. Senate gave it to
Pompey; Pompey rewarded Gabinius with a legate position.
Pompey was very efficient. In 40 days, swept pirates from western Mediteranean. In another 49
days, besieged them in Cilicia, they were forced to surrender.
He treated the prates very humanly: spared their lives and freedom, resettled them. Some even
eventually got Roman citizenship. This leniency was never forgotten – they became his
supporters, formed part of his client base in the east during the later civil war against Caesar.
Pompey now wanted Lucullus’ power of command in the East against King Mithradates of
Pontus. Lucullus had failed to win 3 Mithradatic war (ie, Battle of Zela, his legates almost
66 – tribune Gaius Manilius – proposed Lex Manillia – proposed transferring provinces of
Bithynia and Cilicia to Pompey; he would get supreme command of all Roman troops in Asia
Again, senate opposed extension of Pompey’s power. Bill was passed, Lucullus left, Pompey got
66-62 – Devoted to conquest of the East. He invaded Armenia. After King Tigranes made peace,
he allowed him to still control Armenia as a Roman ally, to watch over Rome’s interests in the
Mithridates retreated to Crimea, north of Black Sea.
64 – Pompey turned his attention to Syria, which was in a very disorganized state. He annexed it,
it became a Roman province. Then intervened against rival claimants fighting over the throne of Judea. The temple of Jurusalem was stormed by Roman troops; Pompey chose high priest to lead
government. Much of Judea became part of Syria. Remaining amount of Judea was a Roman
dependency under the watch of the province of Syria.
63 - Pontus, Mithradates’ abandoned kingdom, was attached to Bithynia, now Bithynia-Pontus.
Mithradates’ subjects revolted against him. His son, Pharnaces, led a mutiny of the soldiers.
Trapped in his citadel, Mithradates committed suicide. Finally, after a decade, the 3 Mithradatic
war came to an end.
In the far east, client states (ie Armenia) acted as buffer zone, separating Roman provinces from
the Parthian Empire.
In east, now: Syria, Cilicia, Asia, Bithynia-Pontus
Pompey became a patron of many clients in the east, increased his foreign clientele; he turned
towards them in civil war.
BACK TO ROME
While Pompey was absent, Crassus was left as the principal champion of the Populares in the
city. His power laid in his enormous wealth; Pompey had much greater influence. Crassus tried
to gain support by allying with Caesar.
69/68 – quaestor in Further Spain
65 – aedile (won popularity by the awesome gladiatorial shows he put on for the masses, funded
by Crassus. Also held lavish public festivals, restored Marius’ statues and trophies of military
63 – pontifex maximus – high priest – got it with Crassus’ financial backing
62 – praetor
61 – governor of Further Spain
59 - consul
** CHECK YEAR! 65 – consuls were Marcus Licinius Crassus and Gaius Julius Caesar (family
of the Juliea; but his aunt married Marius and his wife was Cinna’s daughter, so he was a
Meanwhile, Pompey’s allies in Rome were Cicero (and Pompeius Magnus).
-Cicero distrusted Crassus and Caesar; defended Pompey’s interests in his absence
-stopped annexation of Egypt
-foiled passage of land bill, introduced by Tribune P. Servillius Rullus in 63 – aimed to collect a land commission of 10 members, who would control sale of Italian public land and in the region
of Pompey’s latest conquest. This was land Pompey might want to reward his soldiers with.
Caesar and Crassus planned to dominate the commission; Pompey was excluded because
commissioners had to appear in Rome in person. Cicero called them out,