For a whole generation after the battle of Pydna the Roman state enjoyed a profound calm, scarcely troubled by a ripple here and there on the surface. Its dominion extended over three continents; the luster of the Roman power and the glory of the Roman name were constantly on the increase; all eyes rested on Italy, all talents and riches flowed thither. It seemed as if a golden age of peaceful prosperity and intellectual fruitfulness must surely begin. The Orientals told each other with astonishment of the mighty republic in the West, “which subdued kingdoms far and near, so that everyone who heard its name trembled; but which kept good faith with its friends and dependents. Such was the glory of the Romans, and yet no one usurped the crown no one glittered in purple dress; but they obeyed whomsoever from year to year they made their master, and there was among them no envy nor discord.
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