The Theory of Justice Ship of the Roman Empire by Polybius Cover Image
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A Római Birodalom igazságosságának elmélete Polybiosnál
The Theory of Justice Ship of the Roman Empire by Polybius

Author(s): Gergely Mohay
Subject(s): Geography, Regional studies, History of Law, Constitutional Law, Ancient World
Published by: Akadémiai Kiadó
Keywords: Panaetius; Polybius; Cicero; Posidonius; Roman Empire; stoic ethics; virtues; justice; nature; Roman constitution; subjection;

Summary/Abstract: In the second century B.C. a theory was developed to justify the legitimacy of the Roman Empire before the conquered people. The essence of this conception is the following: the rule of a state over another is righteous if their relationship also serves the interest of the subject country, and this is possible if the ruling state is superior, and makes the subjugated better, governs it more adequate than if it ruled itself. In the first part of the study I argue for ascribing this theory to the Rhodian Panaetius, the path-breaker exponent of the middle period of Stoic philosophy. Thereafter I show that Polybius who wrote about Rome’s becoming the most powerful empire of the world, and who knew Panaetius, and often discussed political questions with him, saw the relationship of Rome and the subject countries according to the conception of Panaetius.

  • Issue Year: 54/2010
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 49-70
  • Page Count: 22
  • Language: Hungarian