The Roman Empire



Spring 2014

HIEU 5051

The Roman Empire

J. E. Lendon

Prerequisites:  HIEU 2041 or HIEU 3041; or instructor permission

This course will examine the Principate from its founding (27 B.C.) to the beginning of the third-century crisis (A.D. 235).  It will proceed by an examination of themes and topics rather than as a narrative:  these themes and topics will include emperor and administration, local municipalities, slavery and varying gradations of freed status and citizenship, patronage, social mobility, economy, romanization, the courts, emperor-cult, and resistance to Rome.  Students are expected to write five exercises based on ancient sources; to write one five-to-seven-page paper; and to take a final exam.  Readings will be drawn from the following:

  • C. Wells, The Roman Empire
  • Tacitus, Annals and Histories
  • Josephus, Jewish War
  • Pliny, Letters
  • Apuleius, Apology
  • M. Goodman, The Ruling Class of Judaea.  The Origins of the Jewish  Revolt Against Rome A.D. 66-70 (Cambridge U. P., 1987)
  • R. MacMullen, Paganism in the Roman Empire (Yale)
  • R. MacMullen, Romanization in the Time of Augustus (Yale)
  • S. Price, Rituals and Power.  The Roman Imperial Cult in Asia Minor (Cambridge U.P., 1984)
  • and a course packet


Corcoran Department of History
University of Virginia
Nau Hall - South Lawn
Charlottesville, VA 22904



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