Nobilitas

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Nobilitas

 

an exclusive circle of patrician and distinguished plebeian families that arose in the Roman Republic toward the beginning of the third century B.C. Traditionally, the highest state offices were filled by members of the nobilitas, and their monopoly of the highest government posts made it almost impossible for a “new man” to hold the office of consul. The nobilitas preserved the political traditions of the aristocratic republic, but opposition politicians also came from this milieu. With rare exceptions, the leaders of the Roman “democrats” also belonged to the nobilitas. During the empire, the influence of the nobilitas declined. Ancient writers also used the term “nobilitas” in a broader sense to designate the aristocracy, as opposed to the “people” or the “mob.”

REFERENCES

Gelzer, M. Die Nobilität der Römischen Republik. Leipzig-Berlin, 1912.
Münzer, F. Römische Adelsparteien und Adelsfamilien. Stuttgart, 1920.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
This is the sense that Thomas Browne employs in his 1570 translation of Johannes Sturm's Nobilitas Literata (as A ritch storehouse or treasurie for nobilitye and gentlemen), where he urges readers to set aside "a sufficient time every day ...
[...] Or, to put it in the precise vocabulary the Renaissance writers liked to use, the question is about the qualities that go to make a truly noble citizen, a citizen of vera nobilitas whose conduct is worthy of honor, esteem and praise." (28) The nobility debate (ranging in form from the letter to the dialogue to the oration) developed into a topos in the following century, leading to numerous treatises in Ciceronian Latin--the best known being Poggio Bracciolini's De nobilitate (1440)--as well as to books that attempted to educate the new nobility, arguably culminating in Castiglione's 1528 Il Cortegiano.
Este ultimo dirigio al joven arzobispo dos odas en sus Carmina ad Iohannam Aragonum, la segunda de las cuales celebro a Alonso como mecenas, felicitandole quod bonarum artium studia sectetur et quod uera nobilitas in uirtuteposita sit (carm.
C.), norma que prohibio a la nobilitas senatorial ejercer el comercio en ultramar mediante buques que portasen mas de 300 anforas (7).
seem to have been more frequently read" than the rest (emphasis added); Shakespeare "might have read" Johannes Sturm's Nobilitas Literata (written in 1549); he "may well have" taken cues from the Aeneid; lots of things are "likely," or "just about possible." For as Burrow sometimes (and to his credit) acknowledges, it "is not certain" that Shakespeare read a given classical work, or it "is open to debate" whether a given literary movement influenced him.