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noon and climax of the military greatness of the Roman Empire. The Emperor

was already mature in years and had learned by military discipline the

lesson of subordination in himself and others. His personal habits were

simple and inexpensive. The time, moreover, had come in Rome, owing to the

impoverishment of most of her noble houses, when a simple example, set by a

frugal monarch, was more likely than hitherto to be emulated and followed

by the magnates of the commonwealth. More important still was the

substitution of the constitutional for the divine theory of government.

Vespasianus governed by law rather than by the arbitrary edicts of personal


It was a part of the ambition of the new Emperor to make Rome splendid. The

recent burning of the temple on the Capitol Hill (1) gave opportunity for

the pious work of reconstruction, and an edifice more magnificent than the

former rose on the site of the ruin. In another part of the district

devastated by the fire he built the splendid baths called the Thermae of

Titus. Still more grand was the amphitheater called the Coliseum or

Colosseum, the magnificent remains of which still loom in grandeur above

the degenerate structures of modern Rome. To commemorate the victories of

his son in Judaea, the Emperor erected that wonder of architectural beauty

known as the Arch of Titus. A new Forum was also constructed and a temple

of Peace to testify to the character of his reign. Nor did the Emperor less

distinguish himself by demolition than by construction. The Golden House of

Nero, a thing hateful to the people by the memories which it

recalled, was torn away to make room for new structures of more grateful


The administration of Vespasianus was upheld by a more hearty support than

had been given to any previous reign. The Emperor was especially fortunate

in the devotion of his son and the loyalty of his general Mucianus.

Antonius Primus, the other leading commander of the legions, was less

faithful in his adherence, but was easily reduced to a minor rank. The

methods employed by Vespasianus were wise and popular. The finances of the

state were restored to a prosperous condition; the exhausted treasury

replenished; the discipline of the army improved; and the factious elements

in the city suppressed. A series of new regulations for the provinces were

adopted by which a greater uniformity of administration was attained than

under any previous reign. Nor should failure be made to mention the wise

and generous efforts of the prince to _________________________________ 1

It is a matter of dispute among modern antiquarians whether the great

temple burned by the Vitellians occupied the Capitoline or the Tarpeian

Hill, but the evidence seems to point to the former.