A report on Roman dictator

Depiction of Quintus Fabius Maximus Verrucosus. Fabius was dictator in 217 BC.
Head presumed to be that of Lucius Cornelius Sulla. Sulla was dictator from 82–79 BC.
Depiction of the Assassination of Julius Caesar in 44 BC, by Jean-Léon Gérôme (mid 19th century).

Extraordinary magistrate in the Roman Republic endowed with full authority to resolve some specific problem to which he had been assigned.

- Roman dictator
Depiction of Quintus Fabius Maximus Verrucosus. Fabius was dictator in 217 BC.

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Roman provinces on the eve of the assassination of Julius Caesar, 44 BC

Roman Republic

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State of the classical Roman civilization, run through public representation of the Roman people.

State of the classical Roman civilization, run through public representation of the Roman people.

Roman provinces on the eve of the assassination of Julius Caesar, 44 BC
Roman provinces on the eve of the assassination of Julius Caesar, 44 BC
The "Capitoline Brutus", a bust possibly depicting Lucius Junius Brutus, who led the revolt against Rome's last king and was a founder of the Republic.
Roman provinces on the eve of the assassination of Julius Caesar, 44 BC
Map showing Roman expansion in Italy.
The Temple of Hercules Victor, Rome, built in the mid 2nd century BC, most likely by Lucius Mummius Achaicus, who won the Achaean War.
Pyrrhus' route in Italy and Sicily.
Bust of Pyrrhus, found in the Villa of the Papyri at Herculaneum, now in the Naples Archaeological Museum. Pyrrhus was a brave and chivalrous general who fascinated the Romans, explaining his presence in a Roman house.
Coin of Hiero II of Syracuse.
The Roman Republic before the First Punic War.
Diagram of a corvus.
Denarius of C. Caecilius Metellus Caprarius, 125 BC. The reverse depicts the triumph of his great-grandfather Lucius, with the elephants he had captured at Panormos. The elephant had thence become the emblem of the powerful Caecilii Metelli.
Principal offensives of the war: Rome (red), Hannibal (green), Hasdrubal (purple).
A Carthaginian quarter shekel, perhaps minted in Spain. The obverse may depict Hannibal under the traits of young Melqart. The reverse features one of his famous war elephants.
Roman marble bust of Scipio Africanus, found in the Tomb of the Scipios.
Scene of the Battle of Corinth (146 BC): last day before the Roman legions looted and burned the Greek city of Corinth. The last day on Corinth, Tony Robert-Fleury, 1870.
Bust, traditionally identified as Gaius Marius, instigator of the Marian reforms.
Denarius of Faustus Cornelius Sulla, 56 BC. It shows Diana on the obverse, while the reverse depicts Sulla being offered an olive branch by his ally Bocchus I. Jugurtha is shown captive on the right.
A Roman marble head of Pompey (now in the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek)
Map of the Gallic Wars
The Tusculum portrait, a Roman sculpture of Julius Caesar, Archaeological Museum of Turin, Italy
The Curia Julia, the senate house started by Julius Caesar in 44 BC and completed by Octavian in 29 BC, replacing the Curia Cornelia as the meeting place of the Senate.
The Roman Forum, the commercial, cultural, religious, and political center of the city and the Republic which housed the various offices and meeting places of the government
Detail from the Ahenobarbus relief showing (centre-right) two Roman foot-soldiers c. 122 BC. Note the Montefortino-style helmets with horsehair plume, chain mail cuirasses with shoulder reinforcement, oval shields with calfskin covers, gladius and pilum.
Roman warrior, fresco in Pompeii, ca. 80—20 BC
A Roman naval bireme depicted in a relief from the Temple of Fortuna Primigenia in Praeneste, c. 120 BC; now in the Museo Pio-Clementino in the Vatican Museums
Temple of Janus as seen in the present church of San Nicola in Carcere, in the Forum Holitorium of Rome, Italy, dedicated by Gaius Duilius after his naval victory at the Battle of Mylae in 260 BC
An inscribed funerary relief of Aurelius Hermia and his wife Aurelia Philematum, former slaves who married after their manumission, 80 BC, from a tomb along the Via Nomentana in Rome
The "Togatus Barberini", depicting a Roman senator holding the imagines (effigies) of deceased ancestors in his hands; marble, late 1st century BC; head (not belonging): mid 1st century BC
Ruins of the Aqua Anio Vetus, a Roman aqueduct built in 272 BC
The Temple of Portunus, god of grain storage, keys, livestock and ports. Rome, built between 120 and 80 BC
The tomb of the Flavii, a necropolis outside the Nucerian gate (Porta Nocera) of Pompeii, Italy, constructed 50–30 BC
Denarius of Lucius Caesius, 112–111 BC. On the obverse is Apollo, as written on the monogram behind his head, who also wears the attributes of Vejovis, an obscure deity. The obverse depicts a group of statues representing the Lares Praestites, which was described by Ovid.
Inside the "Temple of Mercury" at Baiae, a swimming pool for a Roman bath, built during the late Roman Republic, and containing one of the largest domes in the world before the building of the Pantheon
Denarius of Caesar, minted just before his murder, in 44 BC. It was the first Roman coin bearing the portrait of a living person. The lituus and culullus depicted behind his head refer to his augurate and pontificate. The reverse with Venus alludes to his claimed descent from the goddess.
The ruins of the Servian Wall, built during the 4th century BC, one of the earliest ancient Roman defensive walls
The Orator, c. 100 BC, an Etrusco-Roman statue of a Republican senator, wearing toga praetexta and senatorial shoes; compared to the voluminous, costly, impractical togas of the Imperial era, the Republican-era type is frugal and "skimpy" (exigua).
Banquet scene, fresco, Herculaneum, Italy, c. 50 BC
The Amphitheatre of Pompeii, built around 70 BC and buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius 79 AD, once hosted spectacles with gladiators.

Despite his victory and appointment as dictator for life, Caesar was assassinated in 44 BC. Caesar's heir Octavian and lieutenant Mark Antony defeated Caesar's assassins Brutus and Cassius in 42 BC, but they eventually split up thereafter.

Portrait of Sulla on a denarius minted in 54 BC by his grandson Pompeius Rufus

Sulla

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Roman general and statesman.

Roman general and statesman.

Portrait of Sulla on a denarius minted in 54 BC by his grandson Pompeius Rufus
Denarius minted in Rome, portraying Sulla's first great victory, in which he ended the Jugurthine War: The front depicts Diana wearing a cruciform earring, a double necklace of pearls and pendants, and jewels in her hair, pulled into a knot; crescent above, lituus behind. The reverse shows Sulla seated on a raised seat with a bound Jugurtha kneeling beside him; before him kneels Bocchus, offering an olive branch
Marius as victor over the invading Cimbri
So-called "Sulla", a copy (probably from the time of Augustus) after a portrait of an important Roman from the second century BC, with similarities to the so-called "Marius", suggesting that both statues were conceived and exhibited together as either siblings or rivals; Munich, Glyptothek
Ruins of the town Aeclanum, conquered in 89 BC by Sulla
Bust formerly thought to be of Sulla, Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek
Asia Minor just before the First Mithridatic War
A Roman bust most likely depicting Sulla, a first-century AD copy of an original from 80–50 BC, Copenhagen, Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek

Sulla had the distinction of holding the office of consul twice, as well as reviving the dictatorship.

The Tusculum portrait, possibly the only surviving sculpture of Caesar made during his lifetime. Archaeological Museum, Turin, Italy.

Julius Caesar

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Roman general and statesman.

Roman general and statesman.

The Tusculum portrait, possibly the only surviving sculpture of Caesar made during his lifetime. Archaeological Museum, Turin, Italy.
Gaius Marius, Caesar's uncle
Dictator Lucius Cornelius Sulla stripped Caesar of the priesthood.
A denarius depicting Julius Caesar, dated to February–March 44 BC—the goddess Venus is shown on the reverse, holding Victoria and a scepter. Caption: CAESAR IMP. M. / L. AEMILIVS BVCA
The extent of the Roman Republic in 40 BC after Caesar's conquests
Vercingetorix throws down his arms at the feet of Julius Caesar, painting by Lionel Royer. Musée Crozatier, Le Puy-en-Velay, France.
A Roman bust of Pompey the Great made during the reign of Augustus (27 BC – 14 AD), a copy of an original bust from 70 to 60 BC, Venice National Archaeological Museum, Italy.
Cleopatra and Caesar, 1866 painting by Jean-Léon Gérôme
This mid-1st-century-BC Roman wall painting in Pompeii is probably a depiction of Cleopatra VII as Venus Genetrix, with her son Caesarion as Cupid. Its owner Marcus Fabius Rufus most likely ordered its concealment behind a wall in reaction to the execution of Caesarion on orders of Octavian in 30 BC.
Green Caesar, posthumous portrait of the 1st century AD, Altes Museum, Berlin
Statue of Julius Caesar, Via dei Fori Imperiali, Rome
La clémence de César, Abel de Pujol, 1808
Denarius (42 BC) issued by Gaius Cassius Longinus and Lentulus Spinther, depicting the crowned head of Liberty and on the reverse a sacrificial jug and lituus, from the military mint in Smyrna. Caption: C. CASSI. IMP. LEIBERTAS / LENTVLVS SPINT.
The senators encircle Caesar, a 19th-century interpretation of the event by Carl Theodor von Piloty
The Death of Caesar, Jean-Léon Gérôme, 1867
Bust of Mark Antony made during the Flavian dynasty (69–96 AD)
Marc Antony's Oration at Caesar's Funeral by George Edward Robertson
Gaius Julius Caesar Octavianus, Caesar's adopted heir
The Chiaramonti Caesar bust, a posthumous portrait in marble, 44–30 BC, Museo Pio-Clementino, Vatican Museums
Reliefs of Cleopatra and her son by Julius Caesar, Caesarion, at the Temple of Dendera
Roman painting from the House of Giuseppe II, Pompeii, early 1st century AD, most likely depicting Cleopatra VII, wearing her royal diadem, consuming poison in an act of suicide, while her son Caesarion, also wearing a royal diadem, stands behind her
Julii Caesaris quae exstant (1678)
A 1783 edition of The Gallic Wars
Bust in Naples National Archaeological Museum, photograph published in 1902
Bust in the National Archaeological Museum of Naples
Bust of Julius Caesar from the British Museum
Modern bronze statue of Julius Caesar, Rimini, Italy
Statue of Julius Caesar, Via dei Fori Imperiali, Rome
Flowers placed on the remains of the altar of Caesar in the Roman Forum of Rome, Italy
Portrait at the Archaeological Museum of Sparta
Bronze statue at the Porta Palatina in Turin
Bust in the Archaeological Museum of Corinth

A member of the First Triumvirate, Caesar led the Roman armies in the Gallic Wars before defeating his political rival Pompey in a civil war, and subsequently became dictator of Rome from 49 BC until his assassination in 44 BC. He played a critical role in the events that led to the demise of the Roman Republic and the rise of the Roman Empire.

Augustus of Prima Porta, 1st century

Augustus

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The first Roman emperor, reigning from 27 BC until his death in AD 14.

The first Roman emperor, reigning from 27 BC until his death in AD 14.

Augustus of Prima Porta, 1st century
A denarius from 44 BC, showing Julius Caesar on the obverse and the goddess Venus on the reverse of the coin. Caption: CAESAR IMP. M. / L. AEMILIVS BVCA
The Death of Caesar by Vincenzo Camuccini. On 15 March 44 BC, Octavius's adoptive father Julius Caesar was assassinated by a conspiracy led by Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus. Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, Rome
A bust of Augustus as a younger Octavian, dated ca. 30 BC. Capitoline Museums, Rome
Roman aureus bearing the portraits of Mark Antony (left) and Octavian (right), issued in 41 BC to celebrate the establishment of the Second Triumvirate by Octavian, Antony and Marcus Lepidus in 43 BC. Both sides bear the inscription "III VIR R P C", meaning "One of Three Men for the regulation of the Republic". Caption: M. ANT. IMP. AVG. III VIR RPC M. BARBAT. Q. P. / CAESAR IMP. PONT. III VIR PRC. The M. Barbatius Pollio was a moneyer
A denarius minted c. 18 BC. Obverse: CAESAR AVGVSTVS; reverse: comet of eight rays with tail upward; DIVVS IVLIV[S] (DIVINE JULIUS).
Fresco paintings inside the House of Augustus, his residence during his reign as emperor.
A denarius of Sextus Pompeius, minted for his victory over Octavian's fleet. Obverse: the place where he defeated Octavian, Pharus of Messina decorated with a statue of Neptune; before that galley adorned with aquila, sceptre & trident; MAG. PIVS IMP. ITER. Reverse, the monster Scylla, her torso of dogs and fish tails, wielding a rudder as a club. Caption: PRAEF[ECTUS] CLAS[SIS] ET ORAE MARIT[IMAE] EX S. C.
Anthony and Cleopatra, by Lawrence Alma-Tadema
The Battle of Actium, by Laureys a Castro, painted 1672, National Maritime Museum, London.
This mid-1st-century-BC Roman wall painting in Pompeii, Italy, showing Venus holding a cupid is most likely a depiction of Cleopatra VII of Ptolemaic Egypt as Venus Genetrix, with her son Caesarion as the cupid, similar in appearance to the now lost statue of Cleopatra erected by Julius Caesar in the Temple of Venus Genetrix (within the Forum of Caesar). The owner of the House of Marcus Fabius Rufus at Pompeii walled off the room with this painting, most likely in immediate reaction to the execution of Caesarion on orders of Augustus in 30 BC, when artistic depictions of Caesarion would have been considered a sensitive issue for the ruling regime.
Aureus of Octavian, circa 30 BC, British Museum.
Octavian as a magistrate. The statue's marble head was made c. 30–20 BC, the body sculpted in the 2nd century AD (Louvre, Paris).
The Arch of Augustus in Rimini (Ariminum), dedicated to Augustus by the Roman Senate in 27 BC, one of the oldest surviving Roman triumphal arches
Portraits of Augustus show the emperor with idealized features
The Blacas Cameo showing Augustus wearing a gorgoneion on a three layered sardonyx cameo, AD 20–50
Augustus as Jupiter, holding a scepter and orb (first half of 1st century AD)
Head of Augustus as pontifex maximus, Roman artwork of the late Augustan period, last decade of the 1st century BC
A colossal statue of Augustus from the Augusteum of Herculaneum, seated and wearing a laurel wreath.
Bust of Augustus wearing the Civic Crown, at Glyptothek, Munich
Bust of Tiberius, a successful military commander under Augustus before he was designated as his heir and successor
Muziris in the Chera Kingdom of Southern India, as shown in the Tabula Peutingeriana, with depiction of a "Temple of Augustus" ("Templum Augusti"), an illustration of Indo-Roman relations in the period
The victorious advance of Hermann, depiction of the 9 AD Battle of the Teutoburg Forest, by Peter Janssen, 1873
Augustus in a late 16th-century copper engraving by Giovanni Battista Cavalieri. From the book Romanorum Imperatorum effigies (1583), preserved in the Municipal Library of Trento (Italy)
The deified Augustus hovers over Tiberius and other Julio-Claudians in the Great Cameo of France
The Mausoleum of Augustus restored (2021)
The Virgin Mary and Child, the prophetess Sibyl Tivoli bottom left and the emperor Augustus in the bottom right, from the Très Riches Heures du duc de Berry. The likeness of Augustus is that of the Byzantine emperor Manuel II Palaiologos
The Augustus cameo at the center of the Medieval Cross of Lothair
Augustus as Roman pharaoh in an Egyptian-style depiction, a stone carving of the Kalabsha Temple in Nubia
Coin of Kushan ruler Kujula Kadphises, in the style of Roman emperor Augustus. British Museum. AE dichalkon, Chach, c. first half of 1st. Century, Weight:3.26 gm., Diam:18 mm. Caption: obverse in Greek ΚΟΖΟΛΑ ΚΑΔΑΦΕΣ ΧΟΡΑΝΟΥ ΖΑΟΟΥ, reverse in Kharoshti.
Fragment of a bronze equestrian statue of Augustus, 1st century AD, National Archaeological Museum of Athens
Virgil reading the Aeneid to Augustus and Octavia, by Jean-Joseph Taillasson, 1787
Coin of Augustus found at the Pudukottai hoard, from an ancient Tamil country, Pandyan Kingdom of present-day Tamil Nadu in India, a testimony to Indo-Roman trade. British Museum. Caption: AVGVSTVS DIVI F[ILIVS]. (The vertical slice, not part of the original design, was likely an old test cut to make sure the coin was solid rather than a fourrée.)
1st century coin of the Himyarite Kingdom, southern coast of the Arabian peninsula. This is also an imitation of a coin of Augustus.
Close up on the sculpted detail of the Ara Pacis (Altar of Peace), 13 BC to 9 BC
The Temple of Augustus and Livia in Vienne, late 1st century BC
The Meroë Head of Augustus, bronze Roman portraiture bust from Meroë, Kingdom of Kush (Nubia, modern Sudan), 27–25 BC
Portrait of Augustus; Istanbul Archaeology Museums, Turkey

Following their victory at the Battle of Philippi (42 BC), the Triumvirate divided the Roman Republic among themselves and ruled as de facto dictators.

1st century AD bust of Pompey, after an original from 55–50 BC

Pompey

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Leading Roman general and statesman.

Leading Roman general and statesman.

1st century AD bust of Pompey, after an original from 55–50 BC
A view of Monte Conero in Marche, Italy (formerly Picenum), birthplace of Pompey
Roman statue putatively depicting Pompey, at the Villa Arconati a Castellazzo di Bollate (Milan, Italy), brought from Rome in 1627 by Galeazzo Arconati
Marble bust of Pompey at the Louvre, Paris
Modern bust of Pompey in the Residenz, Munich
A Roman portrait of Crassus, Pompey's political rival turned begrudging ally, in the Musée du Louvre, Paris
A denarius of Pompey minted in 49–48 BC
A tetradrachm of Tigranes II the Great of Armenia, minted at Antioch, 83–69 BC
Pompey in the Temple of Jerusalem, a miniature by Jean Fouquet, 15th century
The bust of Mithridates of Pontus in the Louvre, Paris
Judea (shown in blue) under Hyrcanus II in 63 BC, having been reduced to a small vassal as Pompey annexed the north for Rome (shown in red)
A modern bust of Pompey, restored in the 17th century with a black marble base, Vaux-le-Vicomte, France
18th-century depiction of the third triumph
From left to right: Julius Caesar, Marcus Licinius Crassus, and Pompey the Great
The Tusculum portrait, a bust of Julius Caesar in the Archaeological Museum of Turin, Italy
A Roman bust of Pompey the Great made during the reign of Augustus (27 BC – 14 AD), a copy of an original bust from 70 to 60 BC, Venice National Archaeological Museum, Italy
The Flight of Pompey after Pharsalus, by Jean Fouquet
Roman bust of Cleopatra VII of Ptolemaic Egypt, mid-1st century BC, Altes Museum, Antikensammlung Berlin, showing Cleopatra with a "melon" hairstyle and Hellenistic royal diadem worn over the head
Theodotus shows Caesar the head of Pompey; etching, 1820
The head of Pompey on a denarius minted in 40 BC by his son Sextus Pompeius Magnus Pius

Sulla defeated the Marians and was appointed as Dictator.

Romulus and his brother, Remus, with the she-wolf. Romulus is credited with creating the patrician class.

Patrician (ancient Rome)

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The patricians (from patricius) were originally a group of ruling class families in ancient Rome.

The patricians (from patricius) were originally a group of ruling class families in ancient Rome.

Romulus and his brother, Remus, with the she-wolf. Romulus is credited with creating the patrician class.

This status difference was marked at the beginning of the Republic: patricians were better represented in the Roman assemblies, only patricians could hold high political offices, such as dictator, consul, and censor, and all priesthoods (such as pontifex maximus) were closed to non-patricians.

The Secession of the People to the Mons Sacer, engraving by B. Barloccini, 1849.

Tribune of the plebs

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The first office of the Roman state that was open to the plebeians, and was, throughout the history of the Republic, the most important check on the power of the Roman Senate and magistrates.

The first office of the Roman state that was open to the plebeians, and was, throughout the history of the Republic, the most important check on the power of the Roman Senate and magistrates.

The Secession of the People to the Mons Sacer, engraving by B. Barloccini, 1849.

Only a dictator (or perhaps an interrex) was exempted from the veto power.

J. B. Hagenauer, Fabius Cunctator (1777), Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna

Quintus Fabius Maximus Verrucosus

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Roman statesman and general of the third century BC.

Roman statesman and general of the third century BC.

J. B. Hagenauer, Fabius Cunctator (1777), Schönbrunn Palace, Vienna
Hannibal counting the rings of the Roman senators killed during the Battle of Cannae, statue by Sébastien Slodtz, 1704, Louvre

He was consul five times (233, 228, 215, 214, and 209 BC) and was appointed dictator in 221 and 217 BC.

Flavius Anastasius (consul of the Eastern Roman Empire for AD 517) in consular garb, holding a sceptre and the mappa, a piece of cloth used to signal the start of chariot races at the Hippodrome. Ivory panel from his consular diptych.

Roman consul

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A consul held the highest elected political office of the Roman Republic (c.

A consul held the highest elected political office of the Roman Republic (c.

Flavius Anastasius (consul of the Eastern Roman Empire for AD 517) in consular garb, holding a sceptre and the mappa, a piece of cloth used to signal the start of chariot races at the Hippodrome. Ivory panel from his consular diptych.
An antoninianus commemorating the third consulate ("COS III") of the emperor Philip (248 AD).

In times of crisis, when Rome's territory was in immediate danger, a dictator was appointed by the consuls for a period of no more than six months, after the proposition of the Senate.

Gaius Gracchus, tribune of the people, presiding over the Plebeian Council

Roman magistrate

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The Roman magistrates were elected officials in Ancient Rome.

The Roman magistrates were elected officials in Ancient Rome.

Gaius Gracchus, tribune of the people, presiding over the Plebeian Council
Augustus, the first Roman Emperor.
Augustus, the first Roman emperor

Dictators had more "major powers" than any other magistrate, and after the Dictator was the censor, and then the consul, and then the praetor, and then the curule aedile, and then the quaestor.