Description : Scholars have long claimed that the Eastern Roman Empire, a Christian theocracy, bore little resemblance to ancient Rome. Here, Anthony Kaldellis reconnects Byzantium to its Roman roots, arguing that it was essentially a republic, with power exercised on behalf of, and sometimes by, Greek-speaking citizens who considered themselves fully Roman.
Description : James R. Harrison investigates the collision between Paul's eschatological gospel and the Julio-Claudian conception of rule. The ruler's propaganda, with its claim about the 'eternal rule' of the imperial house over its subjects, embodied in idolatry of power that conflicted with Paul's proclamation of the reign of the risen Son of God over his world. This ideological conflict is examined in 1 and 2 Thessalonians and in Romans, exploring how Paul's eschatology intersected with the imperial cult in the Greek East and in the Latin West. A wide selection of evidence - literary, documentary, numismatic, iconographic, archeological - unveils the 'symbolic universe' of the Julio-Claudian rulers. This construction of social and cosmic reality stood at odds with the eschatological denouement of world history, which, in Paul's view, culminated in the arrival of God's new creation upon Christ's return as Lord of all. Paul exalted the Body of Christ over Nero's 'body of state', transferring to the risen and ascended Jesus many of the ruler's titles and to the Body of Christ many of the ruler's functions. Thus, for Paul, Christ's reign challenged the values of Roman society and transformed its hierarchical social relations through the Spirit.
Description : Ancestry played a continuous role in the construction and portrayal of Roman emperorship in the first three centuries AD. Emperors and Ancestors is the first systematic analysis of the different ways in which imperial lineage was represented in the various 'media' through which images of emperors could be transmitted. Looking beyond individual rulers, Hekster evaluates evidence over an extended period of time and differentiates between various types of sources, such as inscriptions, sculpture, architecture, literary text, and particularly central coinage, which forms the most convenient source material for a modern reconstruction of Roman representations over a prolonged period of time. The volume explores how the different media in use sent out different messages. The importance of local notions and traditions in the choice of local representations of imperial ancestry are emphasized, revealing that there was no monopoly on image-forming by the Roman centre and far less interaction between central and local imagery than is commonly held. Imperial ancestry is defined through various parallel developments at Rome and in the provinces. Some messages resonated outside the centre but only when they were made explicit and fitted local practice and the discourse of the medium. The construction of imperial ancestry was constrained by the local expectations of how a ruler should present himself, and standardization over time of the images and languages that could be employed in the 'media' at imperial disposal. Roman emperorship is therefore shown to be a constant process of construction within genres of communication, representation, and public symbolism.
Description : During the Principate (roughly from 27 BC to AD 235), when the empire reached its maximum extent, Roman society and culture were radically transformed. But how was the vast territory of the empire controlled? Did the demands of central government stimulate economic growth or endanger survival? What forces of cohesion operated to balance the social and economic inequalities and high mortality rates? How did the official religion react in the face of the diffusion of alien cults and the emergence of Christianity? These are some of the many questions posed here, in an expanded edition of the original, pathbreaking account of the society, economy and culture of the Roman empire. As an integrated study of the life and outlook of the ordinary inhabitants of the Roman world, it deepens our understanding of the underlying factors in this important formative period of world history. Additions to the second edition include an introductory chapter which sets the scene and explores the consequences for government and the governing classes of the replacement of the Republic by the rule of emperors. A second extra chapter assesses how far Rome's subjects resisted her hegemony. Addenda to the chapters throughout offer up-to-date bibliography and point to new evidence and approaches which have enlivened Roman history in recent decades.
Description : Representing five major areas of Augustan scholarship—historiography, poetry, art, religion, and politics—the nineteen contributors to this volume bring us closer to a balanced, up-to-date account of Augustus and his principate.