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of revenue. Heavy taxation, and possibly the exhaustion of the soil, led to the abandonment of farms, reducing the rent derivable from the land. The terrible plague of the second century brought down population, and was followed by a famine. The eastern provinces had never furnished good fighting material: and the diminution of the agricultural population of Italy, due partly to this cause, partly to the growth of large estates worked by slave labour, made it necessary to recruit the armies from the barbarians on the frontiers. Even in the later days of the Republic the native auxiliaries were beginning to be an important part of a Roman army. Moreover, with a declining revenue, a military establishment such as was needed to defend the eastern and the northern frontiers could not always be maintained. The Romans had no means of drawing a revenue from frontier customs, because there was very little import trade; but dues were levied at ports and there was a succession tax, which usually stood at five per cent. In most provinces there were few large fortunes on which an income or property tax could have been levied, except those of persons who were already paying up to their capacities as being responsible for the land tax assessed upon their districts. The salt tax was felt so sorely by the poor

that Aurelian was hailed as a benefactor when he abolished it.

India has for many years past been, if not in financial straits, yet painfully near the limit of her taxable resources. There too the salt tax presses hard upon the peasant; and the number of fortunes from which much can be extracted by an income or property tax is, relatively to the population, very small. Comparing her total wealth with her population, India is a poor country, probably poorer than was the Roman Empire in the time of Constantinel. A heavy burden lies upon her in respect of the salaries of the upper branches of the Civil Service, which must of course be fixed at figures sufficient to attract a high order of talent from England, and a still heavier one in respect of military charges. On the other hand, she has the advantage of being able, when the guarantee of the British Government is given for the loan, to borrow money for railways and other public works, at a rate of interest very low as compared with what the best Native State would be obliged to offer, or as compared with that which the Roman Government paid.

Under the Republic, Rome levied tribute from the provinces, and spent some of it on herself, though of course the larger part went to the general expenses of the military and civil administration. Under the Emperors that which was spent in Rome became gradually less and less, as the Emperor became more and more detached from the imperial city, and after Diocletian, Italy was treated as a province. England, like Spain in the days of her American Empire and like Holland now, for a time drew from her Indian conquests a substantial revenue. An inquiry made in 1773 showed that, since

1 The total revenue of British India was, in A. D. 1840, 200,000,000 of rupees, and in 1898-9, 1,014,427,000 rupees, more than a fourth of which was land revenue and less than one-fourth from railways. (The exchange value of the rupee, formerly about two shillings, is now about one shilling and four pence.) £190,000,000 has been expended upon railways in British India and the Native States. The land revenue is somewhat increasing with the bringing of additional land under cultivation. It is estimated that fortytwo per cent. of the cultivable area is available for further cultivation. The funded debt of India is now £195,000,000, the unfunded about $12,000,000.

1765, about two millions a year had been paid by the Company to the British exchequer. By 1773, however, the Company had incurred such heavy debts that the exchequer had to lend them money: and since that time Britain has drawn no tribute from India. She profits by her dominion only in respect of having an enormous market for her goods, industrial or commercial enterprises offering comparatively safe investments for her capital, and a field where her sons can make a career. Apart from any considerations of justice or of sentiment, India could not afford to make any substantial contribution to the expenses of the non-Indian dominions of the Crown. It is all she can do to pay her own way.

Those whom Rome sent out to govern the provinces were, in the days of the Republic and in the days of Augustus, Romans, that is to say Roman citizens and natives of Italy. Very soon, however, citizens born in the provinces began to be admitted to the great offices and to be selected by the Emperor for high employment. As early as the time of Nero, an Aquitanian chief, Julius Vindex, was legate of the great province of Gallia Lug. dunensis. When the imperial throne itself was filled by provincials, as was often the case from Trajan onwards, it was plain that the pre-eminence of Italy was gone. If a man, otherwise eligible, was not a full Roman citizen, the Emperor forthwith made him one. By the time of the Antonines (A. D. 138–180) there was practically no distinction between a Roman and a provincial citizen; and we may safely assume that the large majority of important posts, both military and civil, were held by men of provincial extraction. Indeed merit probably won its way faster to military than to civil distinction, for in governments which are militant as well as military, promotion by merit is essential to the success of the national arms, and the soldier identifies himself with the power he serves even faster than does the civilian. So, long before full citizenship was granted to the whole Roman world (about A. D. 217), it is clear that not only the lower posts in which provincials had always been employed, but the highest also were freely open to all subjects. A Gaul might be sent to govern Cilicia, or a Thracian Britain, because both were now Romans rather than Gauls or Thracians. The fact that Latin and Greek were practically familiar to nearly all highly educated civil servants, because Latin was the language of law as well as the tongue commonly spoken in the West, while Greek was the language of philosophy and (to a great extent) of letters, besides being the spoken tongue of most parts of the East, made a well-educated man fit for public employment everywhere, for he was not (except perhaps in Syria and Egypt and a few odd corners of the Empire) obliged to learn any fresh language. And a provincial was just as likely as an Italian to be highly educated. Thus the officials could easily get into touch with the subjects, and felt hardly more strange if they came from a distance than a Scotchman feels if he is appointed to a professorship in Quebec, or an Irishman if he becomes postmaster in a Norfolk village. Nothing contributed more powerfully to the unity and the strength of the Roman dominion than this sense of an imperial nationality.

The English in India have, as did the Romans, always employed the natives in subordinate posts. The


enormous majority of persons who carry on the civil administration there at this moment are Asiatics. But the English, unlike the Romans, have continued to reserve the higher posts for men of European stock. The contrast in this respect between the Roman and the English policy is instructive, and goes down to the foundation of the differences between English and Roman rule. As we have seen, the City of Rome became the Empire, and the Empire became Rome. National independence was not regretted, for the East had been denationalized before the Italian conqueror appeared, and the tribes of the West, even those who fought best for freedom, had not reached a genuine national life when Spain, Gaul, and Britain were brought under the yoke. In the third century A. D. a Gaul, a Spaniard, a Pannonian, a Bithynian, a Syrian called himself a Roman, and for all practical purposes was a Roman. The interests of the Empire were his interests, its glory his glory, almost as much as if he had been born in the shadow of the Capitol. There was, therefore, no reason why his loyalty should not be trusted, no reason why he should not be chosen to lead in war, or govern in peace, men of Italian birth. So, too, the qualities which make a man capable of leading in war or administering in peace were just as likely to be found in a Gaul, or a Spaniard, or a German from the Rhine frontier as in an Italian. In fact, men of Italian birth play no great part in later imperial history'.

It is far otherwise in India, though there was among

| After the fifth century, Armenians, Isaurians, and Northern Macedonians figure more largely in the Eastern Empire than do natives of the provinces round the Aegaean.

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