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The impact of the punic wars in rome

The Senate had gained in power and prestige relative to the people's assemblies, the Comitias Plebis. The Romans emerged from the Punic wars with the widespread understanding that ultimate authority over the military lay with the Senate, that it was the Senate's job to know, advise and guide, and the Senate's job to decide the question of war or peace and other foreign policy matters.

Rome's second war against Carthage reduced the number of people in the Italian countryside. Men had gone off to war.

  1. Carthage withstood the Roman siege for two years before a change of Roman command put the young general Scipio Aemilianus later known as Scipio the Younger in charge of the North Africa campaign in 147 B.
  2. Over the next decades, Rome took over control of both Corsica and Sardinia as well, but Carthage was able to establish a new base of influence in Spain beginning in 237 B.
  3. Many of Rome's small farmers, who had been the backbone of the Roman Republic, had become city-dwellers living off of free bread and enjoying circuses.
  4. While Carthage supported Syracuse, Rome supported Messina, and the struggle soon exploded into a direct conflict between the two powers, with control of Sicily at stake. Newcomers developed a preference for the city over the life of drudgery they had known working on farms.

People had died and people had moved to the cities to escape war. Some people had left the countryside to work in the arms industry, and some had left for Rome looking for subsistence. Newcomers developed a preference for the city over the life of drudgery they had known working on farms.

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  • Men had gone off to war;
  • Second Punic War 218-201 B.

And after the war ended, many veterans from farming families preferred settling in cities, especially Rome, rather than return to the countryside.

As a result of the war, much farmland in Italy could be bought cheaply. Those with wealth began buying this farmland, some landowners expanding their holdings and some businessmen from the cities looking for a secure investment and a source of social respectability. With the accelerated trend toward larger farms came a greater use of slaves.

More lands in the countryside were transformed into pasture, vineyard, and olive orchards — more suited to Italian soil and climate than was the growing of grain. The richest lands were converted to vineyards and the poorer tracts to olive groves, while ranching was the most profitable for capitalist landowners. Holdings that were a mix of ranching and farming grew to more than 300 acres, found mostly in southern and central Italy, the area most heavily devastated by the Second Punic War.

Many small farmers found themselves unable to compete with the larger farms and their more numerous slaves. Moreover, a greater importation of grain from Sicily and North Africa brought a drop in grain prices, and many small farmers gave up, sold their farms and joined the migration to the cities.

  1. Moreover, a greater importation of grain from Sicily and North Africa brought a drop in grain prices, and many small farmers gave up, sold their farms and joined the migration to the cities. Rome now considered Spain as its possession, and it began what would become a long struggle to conquer Spain's various inhabitants.
  2. With the accelerated trend toward larger farms came a greater use of slaves.
  3. And after the war ended, many veterans from farming families preferred settling in cities, especially Rome, rather than return to the countryside. People had died and people had moved to the cities to escape war.
  4. Also the empire had grown.
  5. Newcomers developed a preference for the city over the life of drudgery they had known working on farms.

The wars that began with the minor incident at Messana in the early 260s BCE had brought unintended consequences — as wars often do. Many of Rome's small farmers, who had been the backbone of the Roman Republic, had become city-dwellers living off of free bread and enjoying circuses.

Punic Wars

Also the empire had grown. Rome now considered Spain as its possession, and it began what would become a long struggle to conquer Spain's various inhabitants. Romans had begun investing their money abroad, in mines in Spain, vast tracts of land in Sicily and elsewhere, and they turned these lands into slave plantations.

Some of them lent money abroad, at high interest rates, and Roman financial operations became greater than that of the Greeks and Near Easterners. There would be an increase in fraud, against which the Senate would not always be willing to press charges.

And those with wealth would import more spices, carpets, perfumes and other luxury goods from the East.