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digital Popularitas
rivista AEVUM
fascicolo AEVUM - 2019 - 1
titolo Popularitas
editore Vita e Pensiero
formato Articolo | Pdf
online da 07-2019
doi 10.26350/000193_000033
issn 0001-9593 (stampa) | 1827-787X (digitale)
€ 6,00

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This paper explores the different meanings of the term popularitas from the 2nd century BC to the 5th century AD. Originally linked with the idea of “citizenship” (Plautus), it indicates an actio, i.e. the pursuit of popular support by prominent republican politicians (adfectatores regni like Spurius Maelius and Manlius Capitolinus, “subversive demagogues” like the Gracchi, but also Cicero and Pompey) or by the emperors (Tiberius, Caligula, Nero, and Titus). Its connotation can be positive or negative, depending on the context. Only from the 4th century the term usually refers to a status, i.e. the popularity. The disdain of the popular favour has become one of the main qualities of the good emperor.


Roman political thought, pursuit of consensus, demagogy, popularity.