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By Stephen Kershaw

During this energetic and intensely readable heritage of the Roman Empire from its institution in 27 BC to the barbarian incursions and the autumn of Rome in advert 476, Kershaw attracts on a number facts, from Juvenal's Satires to contemporary archaeological unearths. He examines outstanding personalities comparable to Caligula and Nero and seismic occasions equivalent to the conquest of england and the institution of a 'New Rome' at Constantinople and the break up into jap and western empires. alongside the way in which we come upon gladiators and charioteers, senators and slaves, attention-grabbing ladies, extraordinary sexual practices and gruesome acts of brutality, usually obvious via eyes of a few of the world's maximum writers. He concludes with a short examine how Rome lives on within the modern global, in politics, structure, artwork and literature.

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The factors that suggest legal status where it is not formally stated provide a picture of the names, associations, and families of individuals with title and make it possible to estimate the actual number of slaves, freedmen, and freeborn citizens in this population. Most of those who claimed their work (more than 60%) were slaves and freed slaves. Because this representation is unusual (it does not characterize the epitaph material as a whole), an initial consideration of the special significance of work for slave and freed slave seems necessary.

28 Men who noted public posts, apparitores (assistants to the magistrates), senatorial magistrates, equestrian officials, and more generally members of the senatorial and equestrian orders are omitted, as they, in fact, did not name an occupation per se. The slaves and freedmen of the emperor and his family, too, are not considered, except for comparative purposes. 29 For similar reasons, those who worked in the theater, circus or arena, soldiers, and the military support staff are not included.

In epitaphs the living remember the dead. Within the limits of a conventional vocabulary, we find slaves, freedmen, and freeborn citizens alike representing themselves. 8 The question, however, is not simply how work connected with legal status but how work, from the workers' point of view, articulated an identity and re-formed one's legally determined status. In light of the conditions set by law, how did individuals and groups, through their work, present themselves? Although epitaphs, which constitute most of the inscriptions considered here, record the world of the dead, they bespeak a lived social reality.

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