The Reformer Tiberius Gracchus And His Word On Land Reform And In The Roman Senate

802 words - 3 pages

Tiberius Gracchus was a reformer in attempting to change and improve the situation of Rome through the use of land reform. Yet he can also be observed as a revolutionary through his rapid changes and reforms that challenged the Senate.

Tiberius Gracchus was born in 168 B.C along with his brother Gaius Gracchus into a family whose members had reached the highest positions in Rome. Tiberius’ father, Tiberius Sempronius Gracchus was an aristocrat and renowned for his honors and was one of the most powerful men in Rome. He was once a censor in 169 B.C, twice consul in 177 and 163 B.C and provincial governor in Spain. He married the daughter of Scipio Africanus, Tiberius’s mother Cornelia who was identified as a paragon of Roman womanly virtue. The Gracchi were greatly perceived as one of the most politically connected families of Rome. Tiberius Gracchus married the daughter of Appius Claudius Pulcher while Gaius was married to the daughter of another influential member of the same group, Crassus.

The Third Punic War was the beginning Tiberius Gracchus’ military career, promoted and appointed to the staff of his brother-in-law, Scipio Aemilianus as a military tribune. In 137 B.C he was appointed as quaester, a public official and served his term in Numantia, Spain to consul Mancinus. As quaester, Tiberius saved the army from destruction by signing a peace treaty with the Numantines. However, back in Rome the Senate who were the political institution in ancient Rome rejected the agreement, considering Tiberius’ actions as cowardly and disgraceful. It was a humiliation to Tiberius who saw it as an attack on the prestige and status of his family. This was the beginning of the political enmity between Tiberius and the Senate.

Following the Second Punic War, Rome’s Senate was the supreme power of all Rome which resulted many changes. The welfare of the Romans was undervalued by the ruling Oligarchy, the upper class with their conservatism and selfishness. As a result major problems occurred throughout Rome. Rome was facing serious social and economic problems in both rural and urban areas which caused great distress amongst the common people. There came the military crisis with the lack of eligibility in recruiting men for the legions, the army of ancient Rome. The estates of the legionaries, ancient Rome’s soldiers were bought by the upper class where Latifundia, large estates were formed. Much of...

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