” De religionibus sacris et caerimoniis est contionatus ” : piety and public life in Republican Rome

Autore: Wells, Jack C.
Titolo: ” De religionibus sacris et caerimoniis est contionatus ” : piety and public life in Republican Rome
Anno edizione: 2004
Pagine: 251
Parole chiave: Histoire - Storia - History, Politique - Politica - Politics, Religion - Religione - Religion
Descrizione: PHD , Ohio State University, History, 2004. [Abstract] This study explores how piety became a topic for public discussion during ancient Rome’s middle and late Republican eras (264-31 B.C.). It examines public religious discussions in Rome, in particular the conflict between P. Clodius Pulcher (c. 92-52 B.C.) and M. Tullius Cicero (106-43 B.C.), who brought each other’s piety to the attention of their fellow citizens as part of their public rivalry. It aims to understand what caused disputes over piety and how these disputes were resolved. Public conflicts involving a person’s piety tended to occur when some novelty or unforeseen element was introduced into Roman religious life, since in these situations tradition did not provide guidelines on what the community had to do to fulfill its obligation to the gods. Such disputes often had a political element to them, but this ‘politicization’ did not indicate corruption and decline. Instead, it was inevitable, given the link between religion and politics in Roman civic life, that politics would play a role in religious conflicts. Disputes over piety took place in a wide variety of fora: in the senate, before popular assemblies, in front of priestly colleges, and in the courts. The fragmentation of civic (i.e. religious and political) authority in republican Rome made it possible for a wide variety of individuals and groups to voice their opinions on religious matters, and the very fact that so many people had a say in religious affairs encouraged disputes over piety to break out. Contests over piety were resolved only after the various groups with authority and the disputants reached some kind of consensus. In cases where this consensus could not be reached, the dispute was difficult to resolve, since an aggrieved party could find many venues in which to state his case. Finally, public debate was healthy for the civic cult, since it kept the Romans focused on and interested in the care of their religion.
Link: http://etd.ohiolink.edu/send-pdf.cgi/Wells%20Jack%20C.pdf?osu1090498911
Sigla autore: Wells 2004