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Thread: Interesting facts about the ancient Romans

  1. #1
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    5 members found this post helpful.

    Arrow Interesting facts about the ancient Romans



    This is my first article this year. I have summarised all the fascinating and intriguing factoids I could find about the ancient Romans in the 9 books I have read on the subject over the last year. The page also serve as a general overview on Roman lifestyle and culture. I hope you like it.

    Interesting facts about the ancient Romans



    I haven't completely finished. I will add a few more paragraphs in the coming days.

    Feel free to comment and add suggestions. I am sure there are plenty of other titillating info I forgot or didn't know about.
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    Very interesting. Some facts I was not aware of. This one I found particularly interesting:

    "
    • Domestic slaves were often well treated, sometimes to the point of being seen as members of the household. Under the rule of Augustus, so many wealthy Romans chose to give freedom to their slaves that the Senate had to set limits to the number of slaves that could be freed in one time (the Lex Aelia Sentia and Lex Fufia Caninia). The Lex Aelia Sentia decreed that "slaves who have been placed in chains by their masters, or have been branded, or have been subjected to torture for some offence and convicted, or have been delivered up to fight with others or with wild beasts, or to contend with gladiators, or have been thrown into prison and have afterwards been manumitted by the same, or by another master, shall become free, and belong to the same class as that of enemies who have surrendered at discretion". [3]"
      Not sure if it is related, but I find it peculiar that in the Adriatic Coast of Albania, today some people swear to truth "Me rob shpie". Rob in modern Albanian means slave, Robëri - Slavery. So saying " Me rob shpie" is akin to saying "I swear on my household slave". It is hard to explain semantically, since semantics must have changed at some point in history. Today if you use the phrase, its like saying colloquially - "I swear on my people(family members,household) / I swear to whats precious". But the fact remains, that the meaning of the words/phrase at face value, does not reflect the current semantic meaning. And I suspect the phrase is a surviving archaism in the coast, with influence from Roman times, most likely post Augustus.



      Have not heard "Me rob shpie" used in Kosovo or North Macedonia, only coastal Albania starting Durrës and below.

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    2 members found this post helpful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo View Post
    This is my first article this year. I have summarised all the fascinating and intriguing factoids I could find about the ancient Romans in the 9 books I have read on the subject over the last year. The page also serve as a general overview on Roman lifestyle and culture. I hope you like it.

    Interesting facts about the ancient Romans



    I haven't completely finished. I will add a few more paragraphs in the coming days.

    Feel free to comment and add suggestions. I am sure there are plenty of other titillating info I forgot or didn't know about.
    I've always been interested in the different forms of marriage in ancient Rome.

    Wiki does a good job of summarizing them.

    "Early Roman law recognised three kinds of marriage: confarreatio, symbolized by the sharing of spelt bread (panis farreus);[15]coemptio, "by purchase"; and by usus (habitual cohabitation). Patricians always married by confarreatio, while plebeians married by coemptio or usus: in the latter, a woman could avoid her husband's legal control simply by being absent from their shared home for three consecutive nights, once a year. Among elite families of the early Republic, manus marriage was the norm;[16] the bride passed from the manus ("hand") of her father to the manus of her husband, remaining under one or another form of male potestas (power).[17]Manus marriage was an institutionally unequal relationship. By the time of Julius Caesar, it was largely abandoned in favour of "free" marriage;[18] when a wife moved into her husband's home, she remained under her father's lawful authority; but she did not conduct her daily life under his direct scrutiny.[19] and her husband had no legal power over her.[20] This was one of the factors in the independence Roman women enjoyed, relative to those of many other ancient cultures and up to the modern period:[21] Free marriage usually involved two citizens of equal or near-equal status, or a citizen and a person who held Latin rights. In the later Imperial period and with official permission, soldier-citizens and non-citizens could marry. So total was the law's separation of property that gifts between spouses were recognised as conditional loans; if a couple divorced or even lived apart, the giver could reclaim the gift.[22]"

    "
    A confarreatio wedding ceremony was a rare event, reserved for the highest echelons of Rome's elite. The Flamen Dialis and Pontifex Maximus presided, with ten witnesses present, and the bride and bridegroom shared a cake of spelt (in Latin far or panis farreus), hence the rite's name.[29] A more typical upper-middle class wedding in the classical period was less prestigious than a confarreatio, but could be equally lavish. It would have been carefully planned. Sometimes the bride and groom exchanged gifts before the wedding.[3]"

    This is a funny one:
    "Ancient physicians believed that a woman was liable to get very sick if she was deprived of sexual activityand it could even lead to a woman getting ‘'hysteric uterine constriction.’'[49] There was even legislation passed during the rule of Augustus that required widows and widowers to remarry to be able to fully inherit from people outside of their immediate family.[49]"

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marriage_in_ancient_Rome


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    Rome 320 AD. 3D reconstruction. Mind-blowing... and heart-rending. Reminds me of Shelley's Ozymandias.

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    1 members found this post helpful.
    ^^This group has done a few others, equally good, which showed up on my youtube feed after I watched the above:



    See also the one on Pompeii
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IDCVcuVR5w8

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    I have updated the page. The printed version runs for some 20 pages.

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    I wonder how much about slaves being well treated is something that is biased from the people who owned slaves point of view. Do we have any sources from slaves them selves as to how they were treated? American slave owners also believed they treated their slaves well and if they were the only sources to that then a lot of people would think so to.

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