Tarquin the Proud

Tarquin the Proud

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Tarquin the Proud

The story of the proud Roman king Tarquin serves as a warning of what dangers and vices are associated with royalty and pride. Even Tarquin's first act after Servius' death is despicable and dishonorable. Tarquin's pride has no bounds and so he is known forever in history as Tarquin the Proud. Livy's stories shape a Roman society that would prefer a republic instead of a regency or dictatorship.

After Tarquin is instated as king he immediately gets a bodyguard and is justified in doing this. Tarquin is neither supported by the people or the Senate. His lack of support among the Romans forces him to make the people fear him and his power. He killed and exiled many of his opponents and took property. He failed to consult the Senate on many different matters and made himself the supreme ruler in Rome.

Tarquin would also marry his daughter into the Latin nobility. This gave him more power and allowed him more room to extend his power influence. After Tarquin failed to show up at a meeting he called among the Latin nobility he was insulted by Turnus. This prompted Tarquin to extend his sphere of fear over the Latins and so he sets up Turnus and accuses him of planning on overthrowing Tarquin. Tarnus is found with weaponry and is executed. Tarquin uses this to bind the Latins tighter to Rome.

Tarquin does also contribute to the Roman identity by being one of the first tyrant war generals who are incredibly cruel in domestic polices yet incredibly excellent at warfare. Tarquin lead the Romans in battle and expands the Roman empire. Tarquin also broke tradition and used treachery and deceit to capture and conquer Gabii. Tarquin's actions revile the Romans and will hardly be used in Roman strategy in the future.

Tarquin's actions and extravagant demeanor are characteristics of insane leaders, many of which would be Roman kings or emperors. The Roman people feared rulers like Tarquin and would later overthrow the kings and never allow a king to exist.

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