digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:


Applied sciences






















Populares ("favoring the people", singular popularis) were aristocratic leaders in the late Roman Republic who relied on the people's assemblies and tribunate to acquire political power. They are regarded in modern scholarship as in opposition to the optimates, who are identified with the conservative interests of a senatorial elite. The populares themselves, however, were also of senatorial rank and might be patricians or noble plebeians.

Populares addressed the problems of the urban plebs, particularly subsidizing a grain dole. They also garnered political support by attempts to expand citizenship to communities outside Rome and Italy.

Popularist politics reached a peak under the dictatorship of Julius Caesar, who had relied on the support of the people in his rise to power.[1] After the creation of the Second Triumvirate (43 BC–33 BC), the populares ceased to function as a political movement.

Besides Caesar, notable populares included the Gracchi brothers, Gaius Marius, Lucius Cornelius Cinna, Publius Clodius Pulcher, and (during the First Triumvirate) Marcus Licinius Crassus and Pompey. Both Pompey and Crassus had, however, fought on the side of Sulla during the civil war, and after the death of Crassus, Pompey eventually reverted[2] to his position as a conservative optimas. These shifting allegiances are reminders that the designation populares refers as much to political tactics as to any perceived policy. Indeed Republican politicians 'had always been more divided on issues of style than of policy'.[3]


A historian of the Late Republic cautions against understanding the terms populares and optimates as formally organized factions with an ideological basis:

Our chief contemporary witnesses to the political life of the late Republic, Cicero and Sallust, are fond of analyzing the political struggles of the period in terms of a distinction between optimates and populares, often appearing with slight variations in terminology, such as Senate, nobility, or boni versus People or plebs. But what precisely is denoted and connoted by this polarity? Clear enough, one who is designated in these sources as popularis was at least at that moment acting as 'the People's man,' that is a politician — for all practical purposes, a senator — advocating the rights and privileges of the People, implicitly in contrast to the leadership of the Senate; an 'optimate' (optimas), by contrast, was one upholding the special custodial and leadership role of the Senate, implicitly against the efforts of some popularis or other. The polarity obviously corresponds with the dual sources of institutional power in the Republic — Senate and People — and was realized in practice through contrasting political methods … and distinctive types of rhetorico-ideological appeals suited to tapping those alternative sources of power … . It is important to realize that references to populares in the plural do not imply a co-ordinated 'party' with a distinctive ideological character, a kind of political grouping for which there is no evidence in Rome, but simply allude to a recognizable, if statistically quite rare, type of senator whose activities are scattered sporadically across late-Republic history … The 'life-long' popularis … was a new and worrying phenomenon at the time of Julius Caesar's consulship of 59: an underlying reason why the man inspired such profound fears.[4]

This summarizes the dominant interpretation of the populares in 20th-century scholarship, deriving in large part from Ronald Syme in the Anglophone literature. In the early 21st century, and as early as the publication of the ninth volume of The Cambridge Ancient History in 1994,[5] the validity of examining popularist ideology in the context of Roman political philosophy has been reasserted. T.P. Wiseman, in particular, has rehabilitated the use of the word "party" to describe the political opposition between optimates and popularists, based on Latin usage (partes) and pointing to the consistency of a sort of party platform based on the food supply and general welfare of the populus, making land available to those outside the senatorial elite, and debt relief.[6]


  1. ^ C.B.R. Pelling, "Plutarch and Roman Politics," in Past Perspectives: Studies in Greek and Roman Historical Writing. Papers Presented at a Conference in Leeds, 6–8 April 1983 (Cambridge University Press, 1986), pp. 159–16, 165–169 online: "Plutarch is there [in his Life of Caesar] very concerned to explain Caesar's rise to tyranny … . From the beginning, Caesar is the champion and the favourite of the Roman demos. When they support him, he rises; when he loses their favour, he falls." Cassius Dio (36.43.3) noted that Caesar "courted the good-will of the multitude, observing how much stronger they were than the senate." See especially Fergus Millar, The Crowd in Rome in the Late Republic (University of Michigan Press, 2002), pp. 75–76 online et passim. Caesar's popular support also discussed in Lily Ross Taylor, Party Politics in the Age of Caesar (University of California Press, 1949), p. 93 online et passim; P.A. Brunt, The Fall of the Roman Republic and Related Essays (Oxford University Press, 1988), pp. 1–92, limited preview online; Zvi Yavetz, "The Popularity of Julius Caesar," in Plebs and Princeps (Transaction, 1988), pp. 38–57, especially p. 45 online ("Such was Caesar's policy: consolidation based on a body of supporters as heterogenous in class as possible, among them the plebs urbana); Henrik Mouritsen, Plebs and Politics in the Late Roman Republic (Cambridge University Press, 2001), pp. 1, 9, et passim. On the paradox of "Caesarism" (i.e., the combination of popular support and tyranny), see Peter R. Baehr, Caesar and the Fading of the Roman World: A Study in Republicanism and Caesarism (Transaction Publishers, 1998), limited preview online.
  2. ^ Boatwright, Gargola, pp 244 pub2004
  3. ^ Holland, T. (2003) 'Rubicon: The Triumph and Tragedy of the Roman Republic' (London:Abacus) pg194
  4. ^ Robert Morstein-Marx, Mass Oratory and Political Power in the Late Roman Republic (Cambridge University Press, 2003), pp. 204–205 online.
  5. ^ Andrew Lintott, "Political History, 146–96 B.C.," in The Cambridge Ancient History (Cambridge University Press, 1994), p. 52 online.
  6. ^ Though this has been a strand in Wiseman's scholarship over the decades, see particularly the introduction and "Roman History and the Ideological Vacuum," in Remembering the Roman People: Essays on Late-Republican Politics and Literature (Oxford University Press, 2009); p. 14 online for partes and "party." A less truncated version of "Roman History and the Ideological Vacuum" may be found in Classics in Progress (Oxford University Press, 2006), p. 285ff. online.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Populares — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
920415 videos foundNext > 

Somos Populares Nueva cancion de las Populares


MIX POPULAR 2012 SOLO ÉXITOS POPULARES: este mix contiene todos lo éxitos de la música popular a nivel nacional los mas sonados en 2012 ............

Las Populares - A Volar

Video de Las Populares con su canción A Volar.


CLIQUE NO LINK E SE INSCREVA: http://bit.ly/inscrevaVcSabia COMPARTILHE NO FACEBOOK: http://bit.ly/ComPalavroes INSTALE A EXTENSÃO PARA SEU NAVEGADOR: http:/...

Videoclip Somos Populares ~ Atrevete a Soñar (Con letra)

Tema: Somos Populares Somos populares, Somos espectaculares, Somos netas y reales, Somos especiales Nos gusta ser amigas y pelear con las divinas No nos gust...

melhores do mundo - noticias populares pt 1/6

Notícias Populares é o título do primeiro DVD que a companhia de comédia Os Melhores do Mundo lança pela Warner. Mais que isso, este trabalho celebra também ...

A volar..Las populares..Patito feo! (Letra)

URGÊNCIA 190 -- Bandido é espancado por populares após assaltar mulher e bebê

Notícias Populares-Completo...Os Melhores do Mundo

Notícias Populares Completo...Os Melhores do Mundo.



920415 videos foundNext > 

82159 news items


Thu, 21 Aug 2014 15:41:15 -0700

El consejero presidente del INE explicó que el costo no se triplicaría en automático con respecto a las boletas electorales. CIUDAD DE MÉXICO, 21 de agosto.- El consejero presidente del INE, Lorenzo Córdova, explicó que ante la posibilidad de que para ...
La Voz de Galicia
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 20:00:00 -0700

La localidad oleirense de Santa Cruz comienza hoy cinco días de fiesta que estarán llenos de música, espectáculo y comidas populares y que arrancarán esta noche, a las 22.00 horas, con la lectura del pregón a cargo de Inquietas Compañía Artística, a la ...

Venezolana de Televisión

Venezolana de Televisión
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 14:16:00 -0700

Anzoátegui, 21 de agosto de 2014.- Un total de 262 millones de bolívares invierte el Ejecutivo Nacional en planes estructurales para mejorar las condiciones de vida de las familias de 26 sectores populares del municipio Anaco, en el estado Anzoátegui, ...

Tercera Información

Tercera Información
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 06:18:45 -0700

24 agosto: Manifestación antitaurina y por unas fiestas populares en Sanse. Por tercer año consecutivo Sanse Antitaurino vuelve a las calles con el apoyo de diversos colectivos y movimientos sociales bajo el lema LA TORTURA NO ES CULTURA, POR ...

Diario BAE

El Universal - Colombia
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 07:03:45 -0700

La octava edición del congreso de diarios populares latinoamericanos que organiza anualmente el Instituto de Prensa de la Sociedad Interamericana de Prensa se inauguró ayer en esta ciudad con la participación de más de 80 periodistas, editores y ...
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 01:15:00 -0700

“Si la estrategia es que la gente compre un boleto de cine, tengo que darle la mayor cantidad de atractivos posibles y creo que entre más grande sea el número de actores populares, tendré un imán para que se acerque el público. Los elegí por buenos, ...

El Comercio

El Comercio
Wed, 20 Aug 2014 14:12:17 -0700

Paralelamente, las canciones El mojado, Ella y el y Porque es tan cruel el amor están entre las más populares de acuerdo a las votaciones en el portal The Ranking, y aunque se han posicionado en los primeros lugares de las listas, no entran en esta ...

Periodismo en Linea

Periodismo en Linea
Thu, 21 Aug 2014 22:03:45 -0700

Sin duda que la agrupación de cumbia Corazón Serrano es la más popular del momento en el Perú, no sólo porque sus conciertos son masivos sino que su música es lo más visto en YouTube y se comparten en las redes sociales. El contador oficial de ...

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Talk About Populares

You can talk about Populares with people all over the world in our discussions.

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!