What is the difference between the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The Romans built their republic after expelling the Etruscan king Tarquin the Proud. From that day onward, the Romans were intensely suspicious of any kind of political arrangement that smacked of monarchy. In the Roman Republic, power was nominally shared between two elected consuls and a wholly appointed Senate. In reality, power remained largely in the hands of the Roman nobility; although, they didn't always get their own way and conflict between them and the ordinary Roman people, or plebs, was common. Antagonism was also rife between various leading personalities in the upper echelons of Roman society, leading to frequent military conflict and outbreaks of violent civil disorder.

When Julius Caesar became dictator, it seemed to many that he was turning himself into a new king. To him and his supporters, however, he was bringing much-needed stability to a system that seemed on the verge of collapse. Nevertheless, and irrespective of the dire state of the...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 484 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team