Review of T.P. Wiseman's New Men in the Roman State


  • Paul Gifford



In this work, Wiseman sets out to examine the role of the novus homo in the Roman Senate. Rather than attempt to deal with the earlier period of the Republic, an era for which we have little evidence of most senatorial Romans--let alone new men. Wiseman takes as his starting point the passage of the lex Gabinia in 139 BC.1 This law imposed a secret ballot, meaning magisterial candidates were no longer bound so tightly to the patronage of the nobilitas, and easing the way for those ambitious and talented enough to forge their own way into the senate.

Author Biography

Paul Gifford

Paul Gifford is finishing his fourth year of a Bachelor of Arts degree, majoring in History with a minor in Classical Studies. His primary research focus is cultural syncretism in mid nineteenth century Southern Africa, and in the interests of that he has also completed a certificate in Middle Eastern and African Studies. He is planning to take a year off for work before starting his LLB in 2012.




How to Cite

Gifford, P. (2011). Review of T.P. Wiseman’s New Men in the Roman State. Constellations, 2(2), 154–156.



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