Roman Empire
Ancient Rome

What was romes influence on the government and democracy?


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December 24, 2014 2:51PM

Rome's influence is minimal. The Romans system of government was different than the modern ones, stemming from an ancient society which was totally different than ours, and unsuited for modern societies.

The period of the Roman Republic had a degree of democracy. The popular assemblies elected the officers of state and voted on bills. However, despite this, Rome was an oligarchy, where the aristocracy and the wealthy elites wielded power. Moreover, the system of direct democracy, where the people voted on bills themselves, of both the Greeks and the Romans was rejected in favour of representative democracy, where bills are voted by elected representatives, such as congressmen, MPs or senators. The officers of state, unlike in the Roman Republic, are not elected. They are appointed by the government.

The Roman Republic was a source of inspiration for the independent city-states of Italy in the Middle Ages, whose systems of governance was modelled on that of this republic.