From a rather humble beginning Lucius Cornelius Sulla rose to become a great politician and a powerful general in the Roman Republic. As a general, Sulla lead Roman armies to many victories. As a politician he became a powerful dictator and yet was responsible for bringing about many reforms. This essay will prove how he was a great dictator, politician and general, through discussing his background, his military and political career, his dictatorship, and his accomplishments in his later years.
Sulla was born near Rome, into a politically unimportant patrician family in 138 B.C. He received a good education and lived a normal life. After his father died he was forced to live in a run-down neighborhood. He received a good income but did not have enough to qualify him for military service. He became a play writer, and made many friends in the theater where family background didn't matter. Shortly before his 30th birthday something significant occurred. His stepmother died and left him a large amount of money. Now Sulla could begin his political career. In 108 B.C. he was elected to be one of the quaestors or financial officials of Rome.
After he became quaestor, he served under the consul Gaius Marius in the war against king Jugurtha of Numidia. Before Sulla's involvement most of Rome's efforts had failed, but Sulla brought an advantage to the Romans. Even though Rome defeated Jugurtha tensions between Sulla and Marius began to grow. Sulla believed he was the real reason for Rome's victory.
Soon the two were back together and this time they were defending Rome against the Germanic people. Sulla provided excellent military service and leadership. Sulla and Marius soon defeated the...
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...ctatorship in 81 B.C.
In 79 B.C. Sulla retired from politics and moved to his estate in Puteoli, Campania. He may have sensed his death for once a great philosopher told him he would die at the height of his career. He began writing his memoirs and finished them two days before he died in 78 B.C. of a fever. The Senate gave Sulla a public funeral.
In conclusion, Lucius Cornelius (Felix) Sulla was an excellent military leader, a powerful politician, and an influential dictator. He brought the Republic of Rome to the height of its successes. By his example he unknowingly paved the way for Julius Caesar to become the next dictator of Rome. After his death the Senate constructed a monument to him, inscribed in it is "Here lies Sulla Felix, a man who never forgave an enemy or forgot a friend."(Rosalie 53)
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