The concept of civilitas has recently received great attention – although only within precise historical frameworks –, which has led to a deeper knowledge of this political model. However, in my opinion, Cassius Dio’s Roman History has not received a due consideration in this respect; indeed, the so called anecdotical-biographical chapters of the dionean “imperial books” give some hints about the concept of civilitas according to Cassius Dio’s political thought. By rehabilitating the historiographical role of these chapters, it would be possible to yield an inner analysis of Cassius Dio’s work, looking for his historical and political meaning on the background of the crisis of the Third Century. In order to prove that the concept of civilitas plays a pivotal role in the Dionean Roman History, I decided to focus on the first five years of the reign of Tiberius as case study (LVII 7-14).
Cassius Dio, civilitas, emperor Tiberius, crisis, Third Century.