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April 22, 2021, 08:44:18 am

Author Topic: Ancient History Essay Marking Thread  (Read 5611 times)

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beatroot

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Re: Ancient History Essay Marking Thread
« Reply #15 on: July 13, 2017, 08:56:11 pm »
I will be talking about the Ionian Revolt in my first body paragraph, then the Battle of Marathon in my second and then the Battle of Salamis (instead of the Persian expansion) in my third. I'm trying to argue that one battle lead into another and so on. but if im being really honest here, I don't understand what the question is asking  :-\ :-\ :-\ What exactly are they looking for when they say 'evaluate' in the question?

Thanks so much for the super quick feedback! I'll definitely take all your comments into account and improve my essay writing.
« Last Edit: July 13, 2017, 09:03:01 pm by beatek »
Which will hold greater rule over you? Your fear or your curiosity?

sudodds

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Re: Ancient History Essay Marking Thread
« Reply #16 on: July 13, 2017, 09:22:24 pm »
I will be talking about the Ionian Revolt in my first body paragraph, then the Battle of Marathon in my second and then the Battle of Salamis (instead of the Persian expansion) in my third. I'm trying to argue that one battle lead into another and so on. but if im being really honest here, I don't understand what the question is asking  :-\ :-\ :-\ What exactly are they looking for when they say 'evaluate' in the question?

Thanks so much for the super quick feedback! I'll definitely take all your comments into account and improve my essay writing.
Ahh so they are all battles? Potentially then with that argument, your judgement could be: 'The Greco-Persian conflict was facilitated and exacerbated through various instances of military combat - the Ionian Revolt, the Battle of Marathon and the Battle of Salamis.' That way you are indicating a common thread between them! However, i'm wondering if going by the events is the best structure. It very well might be! As I said earlier, I didn't study this unit, so content wise I can't make a definitive judgement - however have you considered a thematic structure? So a paragraph on socio-cultural causes, a paragraph on political causes, and a paragraph on economic causes? If you have enough content for each, I feel like that might be more effective! So assessing how, through each theme, the conflict between the Greeks and the Persians was exacerbated! What they want you to do with an evaluate question is to determine the significance of various factors, and how they contribute to an overall judgement :)

Hope this helps!

Susie
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Maraos

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Re: Ancient History Essay Marking Thread
« Reply #17 on: July 18, 2017, 10:00:03 pm »
Hi Susie!
I just finished my Julio-Claudian historical period assignment and it would be great if i could get it marked.

The word count for the essay is 2000 words (+/- 10%) --> 2200 max
I'm currently on around 2800...... (I always do this for assignments, i get carried away haha  ;D) so it would be great if you could suggest parts that I could potentially take out.

Thanks!  :D
2016 HSC:
Mathematics
(1 down 6 to go... :D)

2017 HSC:
Physics
Extension 1 Mathematics
Design and Technology
Ancient History
History Extension
English Advanced

sudodds

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Re: Ancient History Essay Marking Thread
« Reply #18 on: July 19, 2017, 07:21:22 pm »
Hi Susie!
I just finished my Julio-Claudian historical period assignment and it would be great if i could get it marked.

The word count for the essay is 2000 words (+/- 10%) --> 2200 max
I'm currently on around 2800...... (I always do this for assignments, i get carried away haha  ;D) so it would be great if you could suggest parts that I could potentially take out.

Thanks!  :D

Time to type this all up again because it deleted the first time (cries). Hahaha, we're defs in the same boat when it comes to word limits, I was notorious for going over last year (handed my extension teacher a 6900 word draft for my major work - that went down well ;) aha)

My comments can be found throughout the spoiler!

Spoiler
The Roman Empire experienced dramatic changes during the reign of the Julio-Claudian rulers, the introduction of various reforms and policies had a large impact on both the Roman Empire and Europe as a whole. Awesome, clear, strong judgement! The succession of a new ruler was accompanied by a whole host of political, social, legal, religious and administrative reforms and policies. Each of the 4 Julio-Claudian rulers, Tiberius, Gaius, Claudius and Nero, reigned with varying degrees of success, the reforms and policies introduced by each ruler were critical in maintaining both a satisfied populace and an efficient and strong Empire thus determining whether or not their Principate would be successful. As argued by Sinnigen; “the importance of imperial personalities in determining policy and law should not be underestimated.” Tiberius’s Principate was a relatively successful reign, his continuation of Augustus’ model of ruling lead to a successful Principate. Gaius’ Principate was an unstable period, his erratic policies in general ultimately lead to his assassination greatly damaging the reputation of the Julio-Claudians. Claudius repaired Gaius’ unstable Principate, and re-introduced traditional Roman republic policies, disturbing the old governing class. And finally Nero, whose Principate was perhaps the most unstable of all the rulers, although initially efficient his Principate ultimately lead to the end of the Julio-Claudian period. Solid intro - not really anything for me to add, this is setting up to be a great essay!

Tiberius was an effective and relatively successful Princep, his attempt to govern in the spirit of Augustus enabled him to uphold the rights and dignity of the Senate and thus his rule was meet with a significant amount of support initially - however later it most certainly declined, and I think that should be represented within your judgement. Remember - "To the Tiber with Tiberius" was chanted when he died, he was not very popular. Tiberius approached provincial reforms in a similar manner to that of Augustus. As pointed out by Scullard, he also remained loyal to Augustus’ consilium coercendi intra terminus imperii , which as outlined by Tacitus advised “that the empire should not be extended beyond its present frontiers.Tacitus claims that Augustus advised such a strategy because he “either feared dangers ahead, or was jealous” of the new Emperor. Don't talk too much about Augustus' himself, as he is not on the syllabus.Tiberius’ provincial policy was disturbed early on in his reign. Two serious mutinies followed Tiberius’ accession, one in the army stationed in Illyricum and the other on the Rhine. Failure to discharge soldiers who had completed their terms of service and the severity of service itself caused dissatisfaction among the legions and threatened to upset Roman control of the provinces. The Illyrian mutiny was quelled by Tiberius’ son Drusus, and the army of the Rhine was returned to their allegiance by Germanicus. Germanicus however made matters even more complicated, by ravaging the territory between the Rhine and the Weser in three successive campaigns without the authorization of Tiberius. In-response Tiberius ordered an end to the war and recalled Germanicus, turning to diplomacy rather than force of arms. Tiberius made each of the three Gauls (Aquitania, Belgica, and Lugdunensis) a province, and two new administrative districts, called ‘Upper’ and ‘Lower’ Germany, under consular legates, were created on the left bank of the Rhine. Way to much narrative and description, you can cut out most of this, and instead focus on analysing. Despite these disturbances the provinces were successfully controlled during his reign and as argued by Scullard “in general the provinces enjoyed peace and increasing prosperity under Tiberius’ administration.” Tiberius’ social policy was generally a successful one and was met with very little opposition hmmm I'm not sure if this is 100% true - if I remember correctly, he was quite conservative, and that reflected in his social policies - particularly in regards to religion and entertainment.. His humble and modest approach to ruling may have contributed to his success, as pointed out by Suetonius; “Tiberius… behaved with great discretion, and almost as modestly as if he had never held public office.” Tiberius was by no means a lavish emperor, he did not put on lavish games or gladiatorial battles and was very much disinterested in such activities. Despite trying conscientiously to govern in the spirit of Augustus ultimately as pointed out by Sinnigen he “utterly lacked the charm and adaptability of his predecessor,” and this was very much reflected in his social policy. Following the plot of Sejanus and during the final years of Tiberius’ reign the atmosphere of his Principate drastically changed. The Emperor, as pointed out by Sinnigen, “became increasingly morose as the years passed, and his fears of treachery increased.” The Lex de Maiestate or ‘Law of treason’ was rigorously enforced and the triviality of court cases rose during this period, as argued by Sinnigen; “Tiberius took ‘treason’ to mean plots against his life. In some cases he discouraged frivolous charges, but he also seems to have accepted as cases of maiestas tales brought to him by informers (delatores) of trivial or imagined insults to his person.” Was this Tiberius though - or more Sejanus acting on behalf of Tiberius? Tacitus maintains that in the last few years of Tiberius’ reign his ‘true self’ was revealed, expressed by “unrestrained crime and infamy.”  The memory of his later years, represented by Tacitus and Suetonius paint a portrait of a tyrannical and ruthless ruler, and as argued by Sinnigen; “Despite good intentions, he was not one of the most successful emperors.” Tiberius’ unstable later years of his Principate was ultimately his downfall, his tyrranical policies further corrupted the Princep thus damaging the reputation of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. However despite these pitfalls Tiberius was an effective ruler throughout most of his reign. Scullard argues that his years of competent and outstanding service as a soldier and administrator have been “overlaid by the hatred which his last years engendered,” his wise continuation of the policy of Augustus provided a valuable period of stability for the young Principate on-top of this his administrative and foreign policy was excellent. Therefore despite the obvious setbacks, Tiberius’ reforms and policies were generally positive and contributed greatly to the prosperity of the Roman Empire. I'd probably want to mention his financial reforms as well! They were super successful, he left the bank in a surplus (which Gaius then ruined...). Overall this is a great paragraph, however I can definitely see where you can cut out words. You tend to over explain a bit, and actually provide TOO MUCH detail. One or two examples are enough :)

Gaius’ Principate was a relatively unstable and short period,The reforms and policies introduced under his reign ultimately destabilised the reputation of the Julio-Claudians and left a severe stain on the Augustan system of government. Gaius’ reforms and policies during the first few months of his reign were considered positive and re-built the damage done by Tiberius’ oppressive final years. As pointed out by Scullard; “he checked delation and treason trials; recalled political exiles and allowed the publication of some suppressed works; abolished the sales-tax; gave shows and distributed largess.” Archaeological evidence in the form of coins Numismatic evidence has been uncovered during this period, some coins were minted with the slogan; ‘OB CIVES SERVATOR’ (‘For Citizens Saved’) further emphasising Caligula’s Call him Gaius - Caligula was his nickname (it meant little boots how cute haha attempt to show more respect to the senate and the people. However, as argued by Scullard “Rome did not breathe this freer air for long.” Gaius’ remaining Princep was filled with erratic policies that destablised the Empire and the general population’s trust in the Principate, in the words of Suetonius; “the rest of this history must deal with the monster.” What triggered this shit supposedly? One of Gaius most distinguishable policies as compared to his two predecessors was that of his religious policy. As pointed out by Sinnigen; “he was the first emperor in Rome to insist on being a ‘living god.’” Suetonius recounts such behavior stating that; “he insisted on being treated as a god -- sending for the most revered or artistically famous statues of the Greek deities (including that of Jupiter at Olympia), and having their heads replaced by his own.” On-top of this Gaius demanded for deification by all inhabitants of the Empire, including the Jews who had been exempted from this formal expression of loyalty what affect did this have? Did they comply?. Gaius’ social policy was as equally extravagant. As pointed out by Wiedemann; “another reason for Tiberius’ unpopularity had been that his reign had seen very little public building activity,” Tiberius’ reign also lacked lavish games or gladiatorial battles. In an attempt to gain favour over the people Gaius renewed gladiatorial spectacles, put on extravagant spectacles and made large donatives to the public. Suetonius lists some examples of such activities; “Gaius held several gladiatorial contests… he staged a great number of different theatrical shows… and would scatter vouchers among the audience entitling them to all sorts of gifts.”Suetonius also points out that Gaius completed ‘certain projects half finished by Tiberius’ including the Temple of Augustus and Pompey’s theatre in an attempt to win popularity among the people. In response to your question - yes I think this is a valid argument. Gaius’ reforms and relations with the Senate were disastrous, as pointed out by Scullard; “he ignored or humiliated the Senate and struck several blows at the ‘diarchic’ ideals of Augustus.” Suetonius also points out that “he would indiscriminately abuse the Senate,” examples of this mistreatment include; holding the consulship each year, moving the Imperial mint form Lugdunum to Rome, handing back the elections from the Senate to the People and transferring the command of the legion in Africa from the senatorial proconsul to an imperial legate.  However it must understood that there are few surviving and reliable sources about the reign of Caligula Gaius, and as pointed out by Sinnigen; “Caligula was a ruler whose personality is lost in a biased, not to say fantastic, historical tradition.” Did you know that the whole "pick up seashells"
 thing is probably a complete mistranslation? Seashells and 'tents' are very similar apparently, so he was probably telling them to 'pick up their tents' - which makes a lot more sense!
Despite this, from our current understanding Gaius’ Principate was a short and unstable period for the Roman Empire, his reforms and policies were ultimately negative and thus lead to his assassination by a tribune of the Praetorian guards in January 41 AD. As pointed out by Scullard, Gaius’ Principate left a severe stain in the Augustan system; “these years, short though they were, left their mark, not least upon the Senate and nobility who realized that behind a Princeps might lurk a despot.” Again another fantastic paragraph, that can be cut down through just not going into every aspect so in depth! Often it is just enough to mention it and provide maybe one or two examples. Though I know it is part of the question, you could potentially cut down on the amount of quotes you have used, as they will be eating into your word count quite considerably as well!

Claudius’ reforms and policies as Princep were relatively successful, his reign offered a new hope for the Principate after Gaius’ atrocious rule. Proud of his country’s past, Claudius looked back to the more creative period when Augustus attempted to reconcile Republic and Principate, these external interests played a major role in the reforms and policies introduced by Claudius. In response to Gaius’ mistreatment and policies against the Senate, initially Claudius sincerely tried to co-operate with the Senate on Augustan lines. As pointed out by Scullard; “he showed the Senate outward respect and assiduously attended its meetings.” Examples of Claudius’ attempt to restore relations with the senate include; making frequent use of Senatus consulta (decree of the senate), trying to maintain the social position of senators and developing Augustus’ provision of the best seats in the Circus for them; restoring Achaea and Macedonia to the Senate in 44 and sharing new provinces acquired during his Principate between senatorial and equestrian legates. Unlike his predecessors Claudius assumed the Censorship in AD 47 for the traditional term of eighteen months, as pointed out by Sinnigen; “Augustus had avoided [this post] because its tenure might have seemed too autocratic.” See you could definitely cut down on your examples here. Claudius’ genuine attempt to restore relations and the policies introduced to do so greatly improved his relation with the senate did it actually though? Like they still very much hated him and wanted to return to a republic - especially when they were insulted by his appointment of Freedmen into the imperial centralised bureaucracy!, On top of this, Furthermore, whilst holding the censor Claudius adjusted the membership of the Senate by mean of adlectio, expelling some old members and adding a number of provincials, including some Gallic chiefs. Scullard argues that “his creation of new patricians will also have been designed to infuse new blood into the aristocracy.” Despite having good intentions and supporting the Senate during the early stages of his Princeps, Claudius alienated the senate, as argued by Scullard; “One of the fundamental causes of Claudius’ difficulties with the Senate and the Equestrian Order was that beside making them more dependent on himself he was at the same time becoming more independent of them through the creation of a private secretariat.”  Claudius developed a centralised bureaucracy by creating speciliased departments, each under a freedman forming the basis of an imperial Civil Service. Though this angered the senate, it did increase efficiency as the Senate was super obstinent a lot of the time and refused to work with him. This service was independent of the older authorities, the Senate and Knights and as pointed out by Sinnigen, Freedmen were granted large sums of power, they supervised practically all branches of government directed by the Princeps and so came to have a great influence upon his decisions and policies. Furthermore as pointed out by Scullard this chancery was staffed with men mostly of non-Italian origin, who were not imbued with the Roman tradition and who owed loyalty to the Princeps alone. Although the introduction of a centralised administration increased the Empire’s administrative capacity it also brought danger, Suetonius claims that; “Claudius fell so deeply under the influence of these freedmen… that he seemed to be their servant rather than their emperor; and distributed honours, army commands, indulgences or punishments according to their wishes.” And his wives! Agrippina in particular had a masssivvvveee influence, that many say was actually positive (ie. Barrett)  Despite being the first emperor since Augustus to attempt to maintain traditional republican values Claudius’ reforms in the senate and both his drive for efficiency at home and abroad undermined the old governing class and led to the greater centralization of power in the hands of one man. Though Claudius revered Augustus, the effect of his well-intentioned Principate was to disturb further the delicate balance of the Augustan settlement. I feel like a lot of it was due to the situation he was in though, more so than his own failures - like the Senate was never going to not be a nuisance - and he came at a time where so many people didn't want a Princeps at all, and instead to return to a republic. Despite these setbacks, Claudius’ Principate and the reforms and policies introduced during his reign were largely successful returning trust once again to the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Like with the others - great paragraph, potentially too detailed (though I do think that a mention of Agrippina would be great!)

The reforms and policies of Nero’s Principate, although initially successful, were ultimately a failure and lead to the end of the Julio-Claudian period. LOVE this judgement - solid and direct, but also nuanced - FANTASTIC Nero’s first few years as Princep were relatively stable and successful, even Trajan himself believed that a ‘quinquennium Neronis’ was a period in which Nero’s rule excelled the government of all other emperors. Under the guidance of his two advisers Seneca and Burrus who themselves were under the influence of Agrippina as her patrons!!!, Nero’s government was efficient and as pointed out by Sinnigen; “Under their direction the administration, while strongly autocratic in tone, was efficient and conducted with consideration of the best interests of the Empire.”   Nero was welcomed by the senate and according to Tacitus promised the Senate more autonomy, in a welcome speech composed by his tutor he promised many reforms; “he promised to follow the Augustan model in his Principate, to end all secret trials intra cubiculum, to have done with the corruption of court favourites and freedmen, Great detail,
 but it's not your own, so you can cut it out I think :)
and above all to respect the privileges of the Senate and individual senators.” Nero sought popularity with the people as well with the elite and thus his social policy was extravagant. He provided highly expensive spectacles and introduced many forms of games I love that he took part in these himself, I just think that is so funny haha -
 get mad Joffrey vibes from Nero
. Nero’s interest in the arts and all forms of music and drama is reflected in his social policy, on-top of this his fascination with Greek culture can also be seen in his reforms. Nero wanted to introduce Greek Games into Rome, including athletic contests, chariot driving, and competitions in poetry, music and oratory. Such social reforms include; banning gladiatorial combats to be fought to the death because such games were ‘unHellenic’, in 60 he established the Quinquennial Neronia which was a Greek style festival based on the Olympic Games, in 61 he built a gymnasium and baths the Thermae Neronianae and in 64 he appeared on the stage at Greek Naples. Don't need this many examples. As argued by Scullard, Nero’s unrestraint spending and extravagant policies encouraged him to indulge in his less reputable desires and rid himself of any who stood in his way; in 62 AD treason trials started again.  The death of Burrus was followed by the appointment of two Praetorian prefects, Faenius Rufus and a vicious Sicilian Ofonius Tigelinus. Nero’s policies during the latter part of his reign greatly damaged the power of the Senate and as argued by Sinnigen; “The senate, whose support had been courted by Burrus and Seneca, was now without any influence, and, because his wanton extravagances emptied the treasure, Nero resorted to oppressive measures to satisfy his needs.” The fire of 64, and the need to reconstruct the city was followed by strict taxation reforms which further damaged Nero’s reputation. Nero’s selfishness also came into play, as pointed out by Tacitus; “Nero profited by his country’s ruin to build a new palace.” His damaged reputation led to plots against his life, and after the Pisonian conspiracy of AD 65 involving five eminent senators and supported by Praetorian prefect Faenius Rufus, Nero took savage revenge enacting ruthless policies; trials intra cubiculum principis were revived and as pointed out by Scullard; “frightened by the narrowness of his escape Nero became a ruthless tyrant.” Nero’s unstable rule and extravagant and ruthless reforms during his Principate ultimately lead to his demise, the promise of his early years had been unfulfilled, and on his way to absolutism and tyranny Nero had incurred great hatred eventually resulting in his suicide and the end of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Could pontentially mention his disasterous religious reform as well - again, I feel like this paragraph was screaming for a mention of Agrippina.
 During both Claudius' and Nero's reign, Agrippina's influence tended to elicit positive results!


The reforms and policies introduced by each of the Julio-Claudian rulers played a critical role in determining the success of each ruler’s Principate, and their successors. I think this is important,
 like as I said, I don't think Claudius' reign would have been as limited if it were not for the damage sustained by Gaius and Tiberius in terms of their relationship with the Senate.
. Tiberius’ Principate was a relatively successful period, the reforms and policies introduced during his Principate followed in the spirit of Augustus thus leading to his success. Gaius’ Principate was a period of instability his short and violent reign was filled with erratic policies that left a severe stain on the Augustan system and greatly damaged the reputation of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Claudius, in a noble attempt to return to the glory days of Augustus introduced policies that attempted to reconcile Republic and Principate and thus returned trust back to the Julio-Claudian dynasty. And finally, Nero’s Principate, although initially stable ultimately lead to the introduction of violent and hate filled reforms resulting in the death of Nero and the end of the Julio-Claudians.

Okay! Absolutely AWESOME work Maraos (as always ;) )! This essay was absolutely fab - like really awesome. The arguments you make are great, the language you use strong, and you very clearly have a really in depth and sophisticated understanding of your topic (like I'm super impressed - many of the things you mentioned I had no idea about, very clearly you've gone well beyond the textbook and done your own research, which is soooo important to doing well in any history subject!).

The only thing (aside from many a few suggestions that can be found in the spoiler) you need to be concerned with in word count, because yes, you have gone wayyyyy over. The thing is, I think this should be easy to fix! You tend to over explain yourself, which is overall a good sign, as it means you have a really strong understanding of the content, however its too much for an essay. Much of what you include should be summed up in one sentence, and rather than mentioning every example that you know, 1-2 will suffice :)

But yeah, overall super impressed Maraos this is great! I always love reading your essays, because the effort and hard work that you put into them is so apparent. Keep 'em coming!!

Susie
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Maraos

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Re: Ancient History Essay Marking Thread
« Reply #19 on: July 19, 2017, 07:46:23 pm »
Time to type this all up again because it deleted the first time (cries). Hahaha, we're defs in the same boat when it comes to word limits, I was notorious for going over last year (handed my extension teacher a 6900 word draft for my major work - that went down well ;) aha)

My comments can be found throughout the spoiler!

Spoiler
The Roman Empire experienced dramatic changes during the reign of the Julio-Claudian rulers, the introduction of various reforms and policies had a large impact on both the Roman Empire and Europe as a whole. Awesome, clear, strong judgement! The succession of a new ruler was accompanied by a whole host of political, social, legal, religious and administrative reforms and policies. Each of the 4 Julio-Claudian rulers, Tiberius, Gaius, Claudius and Nero, reigned with varying degrees of success, the reforms and policies introduced by each ruler were critical in maintaining both a satisfied populace and an efficient and strong Empire thus determining whether or not their Principate would be successful. As argued by Sinnigen; “the importance of imperial personalities in determining policy and law should not be underestimated.” Tiberius’s Principate was a relatively successful reign, his continuation of Augustus’ model of ruling lead to a successful Principate. Gaius’ Principate was an unstable period, his erratic policies in general ultimately lead to his assassination greatly damaging the reputation of the Julio-Claudians. Claudius repaired Gaius’ unstable Principate, and re-introduced traditional Roman republic policies, disturbing the old governing class. And finally Nero, whose Principate was perhaps the most unstable of all the rulers, although initially efficient his Principate ultimately lead to the end of the Julio-Claudian period. Solid intro - not really anything for me to add, this is setting up to be a great essay!

Tiberius was an effective and relatively successful Princep, his attempt to govern in the spirit of Augustus enabled him to uphold the rights and dignity of the Senate and thus his rule was meet with a significant amount of support initially - however later it most certainly declined, and I think that should be represented within your judgement. Remember - "To the Tiber with Tiberius" was chanted when he died, he was not very popular. Tiberius approached provincial reforms in a similar manner to that of Augustus. As pointed out by Scullard, he also remained loyal to Augustus’ consilium coercendi intra terminus imperii , which as outlined by Tacitus advised “that the empire should not be extended beyond its present frontiers.Tacitus claims that Augustus advised such a strategy because he “either feared dangers ahead, or was jealous” of the new Emperor. Don't talk too much about Augustus' himself, as he is not on the syllabus.Tiberius’ provincial policy was disturbed early on in his reign. Two serious mutinies followed Tiberius’ accession, one in the army stationed in Illyricum and the other on the Rhine. Failure to discharge soldiers who had completed their terms of service and the severity of service itself caused dissatisfaction among the legions and threatened to upset Roman control of the provinces. The Illyrian mutiny was quelled by Tiberius’ son Drusus, and the army of the Rhine was returned to their allegiance by Germanicus. Germanicus however made matters even more complicated, by ravaging the territory between the Rhine and the Weser in three successive campaigns without the authorization of Tiberius. In-response Tiberius ordered an end to the war and recalled Germanicus, turning to diplomacy rather than force of arms. Tiberius made each of the three Gauls (Aquitania, Belgica, and Lugdunensis) a province, and two new administrative districts, called ‘Upper’ and ‘Lower’ Germany, under consular legates, were created on the left bank of the Rhine. Way to much narrative and description, you can cut out most of this, and instead focus on analysing. Despite these disturbances the provinces were successfully controlled during his reign and as argued by Scullard “in general the provinces enjoyed peace and increasing prosperity under Tiberius’ administration.” Tiberius’ social policy was generally a successful one and was met with very little opposition hmmm I'm not sure if this is 100% true - if I remember correctly, he was quite conservative, and that reflected in his social policies - particularly in regards to religion and entertainment.. His humble and modest approach to ruling may have contributed to his success, as pointed out by Suetonius; “Tiberius… behaved with great discretion, and almost as modestly as if he had never held public office.” Tiberius was by no means a lavish emperor, he did not put on lavish games or gladiatorial battles and was very much disinterested in such activities. Despite trying conscientiously to govern in the spirit of Augustus ultimately as pointed out by Sinnigen he “utterly lacked the charm and adaptability of his predecessor,” and this was very much reflected in his social policy. Following the plot of Sejanus and during the final years of Tiberius’ reign the atmosphere of his Principate drastically changed. The Emperor, as pointed out by Sinnigen, “became increasingly morose as the years passed, and his fears of treachery increased.” The Lex de Maiestate or ‘Law of treason’ was rigorously enforced and the triviality of court cases rose during this period, as argued by Sinnigen; “Tiberius took ‘treason’ to mean plots against his life. In some cases he discouraged frivolous charges, but he also seems to have accepted as cases of maiestas tales brought to him by informers (delatores) of trivial or imagined insults to his person.” Was this Tiberius though - or more Sejanus acting on behalf of Tiberius? Tacitus maintains that in the last few years of Tiberius’ reign his ‘true self’ was revealed, expressed by “unrestrained crime and infamy.”  The memory of his later years, represented by Tacitus and Suetonius paint a portrait of a tyrannical and ruthless ruler, and as argued by Sinnigen; “Despite good intentions, he was not one of the most successful emperors.” Tiberius’ unstable later years of his Principate was ultimately his downfall, his tyrranical policies further corrupted the Princep thus damaging the reputation of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. However despite these pitfalls Tiberius was an effective ruler throughout most of his reign. Scullard argues that his years of competent and outstanding service as a soldier and administrator have been “overlaid by the hatred which his last years engendered,” his wise continuation of the policy of Augustus provided a valuable period of stability for the young Principate on-top of this his administrative and foreign policy was excellent. Therefore despite the obvious setbacks, Tiberius’ reforms and policies were generally positive and contributed greatly to the prosperity of the Roman Empire. I'd probably want to mention his financial reforms as well! They were super successful, he left the bank in a surplus (which Gaius then ruined...). Overall this is a great paragraph, however I can definitely see where you can cut out words. You tend to over explain a bit, and actually provide TOO MUCH detail. One or two examples are enough :)

Gaius’ Principate was a relatively unstable and short period,The reforms and policies introduced under his reign ultimately destabilised the reputation of the Julio-Claudians and left a severe stain on the Augustan system of government. Gaius’ reforms and policies during the first few months of his reign were considered positive and re-built the damage done by Tiberius’ oppressive final years. As pointed out by Scullard; “he checked delation and treason trials; recalled political exiles and allowed the publication of some suppressed works; abolished the sales-tax; gave shows and distributed largess.” Archaeological evidence in the form of coins Numismatic evidence has been uncovered during this period, some coins were minted with the slogan; ‘OB CIVES SERVATOR’ (‘For Citizens Saved’) further emphasising Caligula’s Call him Gaius - Caligula was his nickname (it meant little boots how cute haha attempt to show more respect to the senate and the people. However, as argued by Scullard “Rome did not breathe this freer air for long.” Gaius’ remaining Princep was filled with erratic policies that destablised the Empire and the general population’s trust in the Principate, in the words of Suetonius; “the rest of this history must deal with the monster.” What triggered this shit supposedly? One of Gaius most distinguishable policies as compared to his two predecessors was that of his religious policy. As pointed out by Sinnigen; “he was the first emperor in Rome to insist on being a ‘living god.’” Suetonius recounts such behavior stating that; “he insisted on being treated as a god -- sending for the most revered or artistically famous statues of the Greek deities (including that of Jupiter at Olympia), and having their heads replaced by his own.” On-top of this Gaius demanded for deification by all inhabitants of the Empire, including the Jews who had been exempted from this formal expression of loyalty what affect did this have? Did they comply?. Gaius’ social policy was as equally extravagant. As pointed out by Wiedemann; “another reason for Tiberius’ unpopularity had been that his reign had seen very little public building activity,” Tiberius’ reign also lacked lavish games or gladiatorial battles. In an attempt to gain favour over the people Gaius renewed gladiatorial spectacles, put on extravagant spectacles and made large donatives to the public. Suetonius lists some examples of such activities; “Gaius held several gladiatorial contests… he staged a great number of different theatrical shows… and would scatter vouchers among the audience entitling them to all sorts of gifts.”Suetonius also points out that Gaius completed ‘certain projects half finished by Tiberius’ including the Temple of Augustus and Pompey’s theatre in an attempt to win popularity among the people. In response to your question - yes I think this is a valid argument. Gaius’ reforms and relations with the Senate were disastrous, as pointed out by Scullard; “he ignored or humiliated the Senate and struck several blows at the ‘diarchic’ ideals of Augustus.” Suetonius also points out that “he would indiscriminately abuse the Senate,” examples of this mistreatment include; holding the consulship each year, moving the Imperial mint form Lugdunum to Rome, handing back the elections from the Senate to the People and transferring the command of the legion in Africa from the senatorial proconsul to an imperial legate.  However it must understood that there are few surviving and reliable sources about the reign of Caligula Gaius, and as pointed out by Sinnigen; “Caligula was a ruler whose personality is lost in a biased, not to say fantastic, historical tradition.” Did you know that the whole "pick up seashells"
 thing is probably a complete mistranslation? Seashells and 'tents' are very similar apparently, so he was probably telling them to 'pick up their tents' - which makes a lot more sense!
Despite this, from our current understanding Gaius’ Principate was a short and unstable period for the Roman Empire, his reforms and policies were ultimately negative and thus lead to his assassination by a tribune of the Praetorian guards in January 41 AD. As pointed out by Scullard, Gaius’ Principate left a severe stain in the Augustan system; “these years, short though they were, left their mark, not least upon the Senate and nobility who realized that behind a Princeps might lurk a despot.” Again another fantastic paragraph, that can be cut down through just not going into every aspect so in depth! Often it is just enough to mention it and provide maybe one or two examples. Though I know it is part of the question, you could potentially cut down on the amount of quotes you have used, as they will be eating into your word count quite considerably as well!

Claudius’ reforms and policies as Princep were relatively successful, his reign offered a new hope for the Principate after Gaius’ atrocious rule. Proud of his country’s past, Claudius looked back to the more creative period when Augustus attempted to reconcile Republic and Principate, these external interests played a major role in the reforms and policies introduced by Claudius. In response to Gaius’ mistreatment and policies against the Senate, initially Claudius sincerely tried to co-operate with the Senate on Augustan lines. As pointed out by Scullard; “he showed the Senate outward respect and assiduously attended its meetings.” Examples of Claudius’ attempt to restore relations with the senate include; making frequent use of Senatus consulta (decree of the senate), trying to maintain the social position of senators and developing Augustus’ provision of the best seats in the Circus for them; restoring Achaea and Macedonia to the Senate in 44 and sharing new provinces acquired during his Principate between senatorial and equestrian legates. Unlike his predecessors Claudius assumed the Censorship in AD 47 for the traditional term of eighteen months, as pointed out by Sinnigen; “Augustus had avoided [this post] because its tenure might have seemed too autocratic.” See you could definitely cut down on your examples here. Claudius’ genuine attempt to restore relations and the policies introduced to do so greatly improved his relation with the senate did it actually though? Like they still very much hated him and wanted to return to a republic - especially when they were insulted by his appointment of Freedmen into the imperial centralised bureaucracy!, On top of this, Furthermore, whilst holding the censor Claudius adjusted the membership of the Senate by mean of adlectio, expelling some old members and adding a number of provincials, including some Gallic chiefs. Scullard argues that “his creation of new patricians will also have been designed to infuse new blood into the aristocracy.” Despite having good intentions and supporting the Senate during the early stages of his Princeps, Claudius alienated the senate, as argued by Scullard; “One of the fundamental causes of Claudius’ difficulties with the Senate and the Equestrian Order was that beside making them more dependent on himself he was at the same time becoming more independent of them through the creation of a private secretariat.”  Claudius developed a centralised bureaucracy by creating speciliased departments, each under a freedman forming the basis of an imperial Civil Service. Though this angered the senate, it did increase efficiency as the Senate was super obstinent a lot of the time and refused to work with him. This service was independent of the older authorities, the Senate and Knights and as pointed out by Sinnigen, Freedmen were granted large sums of power, they supervised practically all branches of government directed by the Princeps and so came to have a great influence upon his decisions and policies. Furthermore as pointed out by Scullard this chancery was staffed with men mostly of non-Italian origin, who were not imbued with the Roman tradition and who owed loyalty to the Princeps alone. Although the introduction of a centralised administration increased the Empire’s administrative capacity it also brought danger, Suetonius claims that; “Claudius fell so deeply under the influence of these freedmen… that he seemed to be their servant rather than their emperor; and distributed honours, army commands, indulgences or punishments according to their wishes.” And his wives! Agrippina in particular had a masssivvvveee influence, that many say was actually positive (ie. Barrett)  Despite being the first emperor since Augustus to attempt to maintain traditional republican values Claudius’ reforms in the senate and both his drive for efficiency at home and abroad undermined the old governing class and led to the greater centralization of power in the hands of one man. Though Claudius revered Augustus, the effect of his well-intentioned Principate was to disturb further the delicate balance of the Augustan settlement. I feel like a lot of it was due to the situation he was in though, more so than his own failures - like the Senate was never going to not be a nuisance - and he came at a time where so many people didn't want a Princeps at all, and instead to return to a republic. Despite these setbacks, Claudius’ Principate and the reforms and policies introduced during his reign were largely successful returning trust once again to the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Like with the others - great paragraph, potentially too detailed (though I do think that a mention of Agrippina would be great!)

The reforms and policies of Nero’s Principate, although initially successful, were ultimately a failure and lead to the end of the Julio-Claudian period. LOVE this judgement - solid and direct, but also nuanced - FANTASTIC Nero’s first few years as Princep were relatively stable and successful, even Trajan himself believed that a ‘quinquennium Neronis’ was a period in which Nero’s rule excelled the government of all other emperors. Under the guidance of his two advisers Seneca and Burrus who themselves were under the influence of Agrippina as her patrons!!!, Nero’s government was efficient and as pointed out by Sinnigen; “Under their direction the administration, while strongly autocratic in tone, was efficient and conducted with consideration of the best interests of the Empire.”   Nero was welcomed by the senate and according to Tacitus promised the Senate more autonomy, in a welcome speech composed by his tutor he promised many reforms; “he promised to follow the Augustan model in his Principate, to end all secret trials intra cubiculum, to have done with the corruption of court favourites and freedmen, Great detail,
 but it's not your own, so you can cut it out I think :)
and above all to respect the privileges of the Senate and individual senators.” Nero sought popularity with the people as well with the elite and thus his social policy was extravagant. He provided highly expensive spectacles and introduced many forms of games I love that he took part in these himself, I just think that is so funny haha -
 get mad Joffrey vibes from Nero
. Nero’s interest in the arts and all forms of music and drama is reflected in his social policy, on-top of this his fascination with Greek culture can also be seen in his reforms. Nero wanted to introduce Greek Games into Rome, including athletic contests, chariot driving, and competitions in poetry, music and oratory. Such social reforms include; banning gladiatorial combats to be fought to the death because such games were ‘unHellenic’, in 60 he established the Quinquennial Neronia which was a Greek style festival based on the Olympic Games, in 61 he built a gymnasium and baths the Thermae Neronianae and in 64 he appeared on the stage at Greek Naples. Don't need this many examples. As argued by Scullard, Nero’s unrestraint spending and extravagant policies encouraged him to indulge in his less reputable desires and rid himself of any who stood in his way; in 62 AD treason trials started again.  The death of Burrus was followed by the appointment of two Praetorian prefects, Faenius Rufus and a vicious Sicilian Ofonius Tigelinus. Nero’s policies during the latter part of his reign greatly damaged the power of the Senate and as argued by Sinnigen; “The senate, whose support had been courted by Burrus and Seneca, was now without any influence, and, because his wanton extravagances emptied the treasure, Nero resorted to oppressive measures to satisfy his needs.” The fire of 64, and the need to reconstruct the city was followed by strict taxation reforms which further damaged Nero’s reputation. Nero’s selfishness also came into play, as pointed out by Tacitus; “Nero profited by his country’s ruin to build a new palace.” His damaged reputation led to plots against his life, and after the Pisonian conspiracy of AD 65 involving five eminent senators and supported by Praetorian prefect Faenius Rufus, Nero took savage revenge enacting ruthless policies; trials intra cubiculum principis were revived and as pointed out by Scullard; “frightened by the narrowness of his escape Nero became a ruthless tyrant.” Nero’s unstable rule and extravagant and ruthless reforms during his Principate ultimately lead to his demise, the promise of his early years had been unfulfilled, and on his way to absolutism and tyranny Nero had incurred great hatred eventually resulting in his suicide and the end of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Could pontentially mention his disasterous religious reform as well - again, I feel like this paragraph was screaming for a mention of Agrippina.
 During both Claudius' and Nero's reign, Agrippina's influence tended to elicit positive results!


The reforms and policies introduced by each of the Julio-Claudian rulers played a critical role in determining the success of each ruler’s Principate, and their successors. I think this is important,
 like as I said, I don't think Claudius' reign would have been as limited if it were not for the damage sustained by Gaius and Tiberius in terms of their relationship with the Senate.
. Tiberius’ Principate was a relatively successful period, the reforms and policies introduced during his Principate followed in the spirit of Augustus thus leading to his success. Gaius’ Principate was a period of instability his short and violent reign was filled with erratic policies that left a severe stain on the Augustan system and greatly damaged the reputation of the Julio-Claudian dynasty. Claudius, in a noble attempt to return to the glory days of Augustus introduced policies that attempted to reconcile Republic and Principate and thus returned trust back to the Julio-Claudian dynasty. And finally, Nero’s Principate, although initially stable ultimately lead to the introduction of violent and hate filled reforms resulting in the death of Nero and the end of the Julio-Claudians.

Okay! Absolutely AWESOME work Maraos (as always ;) )! This essay was absolutely fab - like really awesome. The arguments you make are great, the language you use strong, and you very clearly have a really in depth and sophisticated understanding of your topic (like I'm super impressed - many of the things you mentioned I had no idea about, very clearly you've gone well beyond the textbook and done your own research, which is soooo important to doing well in any history subject!).

The only thing (aside from many a few suggestions that can be found in the spoiler) you need to be concerned with in word count, because yes, you have gone wayyyyy over. The thing is, I think this should be easy to fix! You tend to over explain yourself, which is overall a good sign, as it means you have a really strong understanding of the content, however its too much for an essay. Much of what you include should be summed up in one sentence, and rather than mentioning every example that you know, 1-2 will suffice :)

But yeah, overall super impressed Maraos this is great! I always love reading your essays, because the effort and hard work that you put into them is so apparent. Keep 'em coming!!

Susie


Thanks so much for the feedback susie! :D
haha and yeah word count is defs a problem (gotta improve that for trial essays especially).
Glad to hear you like reading my essays haha :) , now i just gotta finish this extension project....

Thanks again!
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sudodds

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Re: Ancient History Essay Marking Thread
« Reply #20 on: July 19, 2017, 07:50:33 pm »
Thanks so much for the feedback susie! :D
haha and yeah word count is defs a problem (gotta improve that for trial essays especially).
Glad to hear you like reading my essays haha :) , now i just gotta finish this extension project....

Thanks again!
No worries! Hahaha you'll get there - if I can go from writing 6000 word essays to 1100 average you'll be fine :D
And yes I love reading them, because as I said, I can tell the amount of work that has gone into it, and how passionate you are, which will always make for an interesting read :) Hope everything with extension is going well!

Susie
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elysepopplewell

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Re: Ancient History Essay Marking Thread
« Reply #21 on: July 26, 2017, 05:38:14 pm »
Hey all, in 48 hours from now we will be locking these marking threads for the trial period. The two main reasons being, we want to be able to help lots of students in the time it takes to mark an essay/creative (usually 30-45 minutes at least) while lots of students need the help during trials, and also because feedback becomes less constructive with minimal time until the exam because we want to avoid panicking you with big changes, so the feedback isn't as worthwhile for you.

Not to fear - you still have 48 hours to post your work and we will get to marking them even after the threads are locked (if there's backlog).

We'll still be here to help you during the trials with all of our Q+A threads, downloadable notes, and so on. Thanks for understanding! We're still here to help on all of the boards that aren't marking threads! :)
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