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Essay Is the United States of the 21st Century faced with the same dilemma and problems that the Roman Republic faced as it transformed due its strength into an empire Discuss your Stance based upon knowledge and backed by historical research The Roman Republic was established in 509BC after Roman nobles overthrew the king The new government kept many features of the earlier system including the Senate and citizen assemblies Two elected officials called consuls headed the government The consuls shared power but either consul could veto the actions of the other A consul served for only a year The Senate was the most powerful government body of the Roman Republic The Senate conducted foreign policy passed decrees and handled the governments finances Senators unlike consuls served for life At first all senators were patricians Patricians were members of Romes oldest and richest families Patricians controlled not only the Senate but also the assembly that elected the consuls and other important officials All the rest of Romes citizens who were called plebeians had little political influence To obtain political rights plebeians formed their own assembly the Concilium Plebis and elected leaders called tribunes Largely through the work of the tribunes plebeians gradually gained the same political rights as the patricians In time a new and larger assembly the Comitia Tributa developed It represented both patricians and plebeians but plebeians largely controlled the assembly Expansion overseas made Rome a mighty kingdom during the 200s and 100s BC Rome came into conflict first with Carthage a sea power and trading center on the coast of northern Africa Rome and Carthage fought for mastery of the Mediterranean Sea in three struggles called the Punic Wars In the First Punic War 264-241BC Rome conquered Sicily an island off the tip of Italy and made it the first Roman province Rome also seized two other Mediterranean islands--Sardinia and Corsica In the Second Punic War 218-201BC the brilliant Carthaginian general
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