"‘Sicilians don’t have a vote,’ I pointed out."
The toga was the symbol of citizenship
Public DomainThe toga was the symbol of citizenship - Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Only free Roman citizens were allowed to vote, excluding slaves and the inhabitants of conquered or allied territory. Roman citizenship was a prized possession, coveted for the protection and privileges it bestowed, and was the cause of much contention throughout Roman history. Citizenship was at first jealously guarded, and the question of whether it should be extended to the Italian allies was one factor in the cause of the Social War that broke out in 91 BC. Much later, the emperor Caracalla (3rd century AD) would offer citizenship to all free men living in Rome’s empire.