Santo Mazzarino explored the role of the late antique Senate in a plurality of works and from different perspectives. Like the tesserae of a polychrome mosaic, these pages make up a complex and original framework, in which the Senate is configured as a great protagonist of the late antique West. For Mazzarino, fourth- and fifth-century Western society was characterized by a general economic and political strengthening of the senatorial class. This interpretation, fundamentally different from Mommsen’s doctrine, allowed Mazzarino to connect the evolution of the late antique Senate with the crisis of the imperial State. In this way, for Mazzarino, the role of the Senate became a major factor in the periodization of the late antiquity.
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