Week 9 – Struggle of the Orders

What specific changes occurred in Roman society as a result of the Struggle of the Orders?

This event lasted from 494 BC to 287 BC and is sometimes referred to as the Conflict of the Orders.

There were two groups in Rome: patricians and plebeians. Patricians had a lot of privileges, where the plebeians had none. Plebeians obviously did not like this and wanted the privileges, too.

The struggle between these two groups makes the Struggle of the Orders.

The Patricians were the nobles, plebeians consisted of the lower class people. You could only become a patrician by birth, not by marriage nor anything else.

In c. 494 BC, the plebeians decided to withdraw from Rome. They came to the conclusion that even though they do not have political rights, they can protest with their own bodies – Rome needed them to protect itself, it was weak without them.

Later on, in the midth 500th century BC, “The twelve Tables” law is published. Until this day, the plebeians had no access to the official law. There were also many tribunes, that were meant to protect people from plebeians if anything happened. Plebeians of course wanted to also have some tribunes and councils, so the privilege-building continues for many years.

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