Cato the Elder and Gaius Marius Comparison Essay by scribbler

Cato the Elder and Gaius Marius
A comparison of the leadership of Cato the Elder and Gaius Marius, leaders from the Roman Republic.
# 152923 | 1,266 words | 1 source | MLA | 2013 | US
Published on May 01, 2013 in History (Greek and Roman) , History (Leaders)

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The paper reveals that Cato the Elder and Gaius Marius stand as two of the most remarkable leaders from the Roman Republic, and each pushed his way up the Roman political order with an audacity that perplexed and impressed his rivals. The paper describes the condition of the Roman Republic during the times of Cato and Gaius Marius and then details their respective rises to power. The paper shows how both Cato and Marius lived at a time when the Roman Republic was under serious threat of extinction and achieved success because of their simplicity, hardiness, and novelty, however, the two had vastly different effects on the Roman Republic.

The Condition of the Roman Republic During the Time of Cato
The Rise of Cato
The Condition of the Roman Republic During the Time of Gaius Marius
The Rise of Gaius Marius

From the Paper:

"Cato arrived on the political scene around 217 BC, at a time when the Roman Republic was facing one of its most formidable military challenges ever. (Livy, History of Rome, Book 21) Italy had just been invaded by Carthaginian General Hannibal and was fighting for its very existence. (Livy 21) Hannibal had defeated each general Rome sent to oppose him and was reducing the Italian countryside. (Livy 21)
"Because the Punic War provoked so much fear in Rome, Romans were willing to suspend the rule of law, relinquishing Republican controls that prevented the accumulation of individual power. One of these controls was a law preventing the re-election of ex-consuls, so as to prevent extended dictatorships. (Polybius, Histories, Book 6) During the Punic War in 197, the Senate suspended this law and re-elected former consul Scipio Africanus so he could be sent to fight Carthage. (Plutarch, Lives, Gaius Marius, Chapter 17 ) Though these suspensions were temporary, ambitious military men derived too much gain from foreign military conquests to prevent them, and some actively provoked them. (Appian, Punic Wars, Book 2)) Thus, there was a cycle of military conflict and a subsequent suspension of law which undermined Republican rule."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Livy, History of Rome
  • Cassius Dio, Roman History
  • Plutarch, Lives of Great Men
  • Polybius, Histories
  • Appian, Punic Wars

Cite this Comparison Essay:

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