The Principate Cycle 30 BCE-285 CE. By: Samia Sara Popal. Overview of the Cycle. *The Participate cycle covers the three centuries between 27 BCE and 285 CE
Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.
By: Samia Sara Popal
*The Participate cycle covers the three centuries between 27 BCE and 285 CE
* The bulk of territorial expansion was accomplished by the end of Augustus reign, fluctuations in territorial size thereafter were relatively minor and had minor effects on the social, economic, and
Population DynamicsEarly Imperial CensusI made this graphs to show you the change throughout the years;We have three Augustan & one Claudian censuses of the Roman citizen population.
Year Population implied Growth Rate
28 BCE 4.063 –
8 BCE 4.233 0.2% p.a.
14 CE 4.937 0.7% p.a.
48 CE 5.894 0.5% p.a.
* The senate collectively and most senators individually were cut off from the exercise of political power on behalf of the state.
* The expansion phase (27 BCE–96) was characterized by intermittent financial difficulties, which were largely resolved by the end of the first century. Difficulties in funding army discharge bonuses almost led to a mutiny.
***The Empire entered the stagflation phase (96–165) with very strong finances. The reigns of Trajan and Hadrian were characterized by large increases in spending that were apparently easily accommodated by the revenues.***Imperially financed building activity reached the peak under Hadrian and was also very intense under Trajan and Antoninus Pius. Antoninus Pius left a very large surplus to his successors 2.7 billion. This was to be the last surplus reported until the fifth century.
By itself, the spending on congiaria was not enough to break the treasury (it was perhaps 5% of the estimate revenues of the Empire at the time). But the alarming growth of cash handouts to citizens was at least matched by the growth of handouts to the army. Army costs constituted the bulk of the Imperial budget, and their growth was what caused the state bancruptcy. Financial difficulties of Commodus are reflected in the debasement of the denarius (declined from 3 to 2 g of silver,and in the alarming increase in the executions of wealthy nobles and the confiscation of their proper. The next emperor, Pertinax (193) again used the expedient of selling palace treasuries to raise cash.
***After a brief relatively stable period under the Severi (193–235), the finaces collapsed for good during the civil wars of 235–284. Probably the best indicator of the financial difficulties of the Roman state is given by the rate at which the main silver coin, denarius, was debased by successive emperors.
****The Empire minted coins primarily for the purpose of paying the army, bureacracy, and making good on other state expenses. The Roman rulers recognized early on the value of debasement as a temporary solution of their fiscal difficulties. Thus, Nero reduced the silver content of the
denarius (both by making it lighter and by increasing the percent of base metal) to 3.14 g (compared to 3.72 g under Augustus). Vespasian further reduced it to 3.07 g, but once the financial health was regained, Domitian increased the silver content of the denarius back to 3.28
Sociopolitical Instability - From the point of view of sociopolitical stability and public order the period of the Principate can be divided into three distinct phases.*** See chart on next slide***
* The number of slaves probably diminished during the first two centuries.