Roman History I - LM (2019/2020)

Course code
Elvira Migliario
Other available courses
Teaching is organised as follows:
Unit Credits Academic sector Period Academic staff
MODULO II 6 L-ANT/03-ROMAN HISTORY I semestre - sede TN Elvira Migliario
MODULO I 6 L-ANT/03-ROMAN HISTORY I semestre - sede TN Elvira Migliario

Learning outcomes

The course is intended to lead students: to read and understand both literary sources and primary ancient evidences in the original; to master the main research tools as well as the related secondary literature; to acquire a comprehensive awareness both of the methodological foundations of the discipline and of the most important trends in the present-day scholarly debate. Its final aim is to provide students with a thorough competence in some of the main issues and crucial topics of Roman history.


The course consists in two parts (I + II, or A + B). Part I/A: a few introductory lectures will focus upon: the survival of epigraphic texts and the history of epigraphy; epigraphy as a branch of historical knowledge and its contribution to reconstructing Roman history; social and historical contexts of the epigraphic habit; archaeological and monumental aspects of the inscriptions; main collections and related updating. On the basis of the inscriptions presented by the lecturer, the distinctive features of the epigraphic code (alphabet, acronyms and abbreviations, nouns, titles) will be explained, as well as methods of understanding and dating Roman inscriptions. Attention will be particularly paid to comparing inscriptions to coeval sources and documents.
Part II/B: the following main subjects will be considered as crucial topics: ancient and modern theories about aristocracy and/or élites; composition, roles and functions of the Roman late-republican nobilitas; élites and civil wars; the post-Actium ruling class; the new senate, the equestrian order, and the domi nobiles.

Assessment methods and criteria

For both sections (I-II, or A-B), the oral exam will aim to check firstly the student’s knowledge of events, subjects and topics as outlined in the textbooks and by the lecturers; then, his ability to understand and comment on the inscriptions and/or on documents, putting them in their proper historical contexts; finally, his thorough study of one (minimum) topic/document by personal choice. Particularly, for sect. I/A students will be requested to: 1. study carefully the indicated chapters of the textbook; 2. read, translate and explain the documents illustrated during the course; 3. comment thoroughly on the inscription(s) studied by personal choice; as for sect. II/B, students will be requested to: 1) study carefully the textbook of Roman history; 2) read, translate and explain the documents illustrated during the course, one of which, by personal choice, must be thoroughly commented on the basis of the recent scholarly works that will be suggested.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
A. Buonopane Manuale di epigrafia latina Carocci, Roma 2009
Geraci G., Marcone A. Storia romana Mondadori Education 2016 9788800746953