Marcus Licinius Crassus

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Crassus, Marcus Licinius


Born circa 115 B.C. in Rome (?); died in 53 B.C. in Carrhae. Roman politician and military leader.

In the civil war between Sulla and the “Marian” party in 83 and 82, Crassus was on the side of Sulla. During the proscriptions of Sulla, Crassus grew rich on the executions and confiscations. Wealth, greed, and unscrupulousness gave him a bad name. In 72 the Senate gave Crassus extraordinary powers to suppress the Spartacus rebellion. He crushed the rebels' main forces in Apulia in 71 and completed the campaign together with Pompey, who arrived from Spain. The consulship of Crassus and Pompey (his rival from the times of Sulla) was marked by the abolition of a number of changes introduced by Sulla; for example, the power of the tribunes and the office of censor were restored. In 65, Crassus was made a censor. Apparently, he had links with Catiline. In 60, after reconciling Crassus and Pompey, Caesar entered into a secret agreement with them. This first triumvirate virtually ruled the state. In 55, Crassus was made consul (again jointly with Pompey). At the same time he was given command over the province of Syria and went there in the hope of defeating the Parthians. However, the Roman Army was crushed by the Parthians, and Crassus himself died along with a large number of his troops.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Scholars disagree over which Crassus these coins should be attributed to; Svoronos favoured Publius Canidius Crassus while Grant preferred Marcus Licinius Crassus. (39) Canidius Crassus was, after all, involved in Antonius' Parthian and Armenian campaigns from 36 BC until 33 BC, so it seems unlikely that he was simultaneously in charge of Crete and Cyrenaica.
We are in the equivalent of late-republican Rome when the "Labor" leaders were the populares epitomised by Julius Caesar and his colleague in the first triumvirate, Marcus Licinius Crassus (the richest man in Rome), men of great wealth who very successfully manipulated and pretended to represent the working classes in order to further their personal ambitions.
His forces were eventually wiped out by Marcus Licinius Crassus on the Siler river, and the historian Appian reported that 6,000 slaves taken prisoner were crucified along the way from Capua to Rome.
This insurgency ultimately was put down by Marcus Licinius Crassus in 71 B.C.E.