Page:EB1911 - Volume 22.djvu/528

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513
PROVINCE

the Colonial Assembly in 1649; in 173O-1731, when the area of Providence was 370 sq. In., Scituate (including Foster), Glocester (including Burrillville), and Smithfield (including North Smithlield and Lincoln) were set off; in the next thirty years the area of the township was reduced to 5% sq. m. by the separation of Cranston, Johnston and North Providence, parts of which have been re-annexed since 1860. Providence was chartered as a city in 1832. During King Philip's War, in 1676, the town was attacked by Indians and the northern half was burned., In June 1772, a British schooner, the “ Gaspee, ” while chasing a Providence packet-boat ran aground at what has since become known as Gaspee Point, whereupon its capture was planned by John Brown (1736-1828), a Providence merchant, and the plan including the burning of the vessel-was carried out under the command of Abraham Whipple (1733-1819). During the war much privateering was carried on from Providence. The British occupation of Newport during the War of Independence caused the transfer of the important foreign commerce of that city to Providence, but as a consequence of their superior railway facilities most of this went to New York and Boston before the middle of the 19th century. In September 1815 Providence was visited by a gale which did about $r,000,000 damage to its shipping and other property. In 1830 Providence had ceased to be a great port and had begun to be a textile manufacturing place. Until rgoo Providence was one of the two capitals of the state, Newport being the other; since 1900 it has been the sole capital.

See H. C. Dorr, “ The Planting and Growth of Providence, ” in the Rhode Island Historical Tracts (Providence, 1882); W. A. Greene and others, The Providence Plantations for Two Hundred and Fifty Years (Providence, 1886); W. R. Staples, Annals of the Town of Providence (Providence, 1843); W. B. Weeden, “ Providence, the Colony of Hope, " in L. P. Powell's Historic Towns of New England (New York, 1898); H. K. Stokes, “ Finances and Administration of Providence “ (Baltimore, 1903) in Johns Hopkins University Studies in Historical and Political Science; and William Kirk and others, A Msidern City: Providence, Rhode Island, and Its Activities (Chicago, 1909.


PROVINCE (Lat. provincial; perhaps a contraction of providential), a term originally applied, in ancient Rome, to the department or sphere of duty assigned to one of the higher magistrates, the consuls and praetors.' When, with the spread of the Roman arms, the government of conquered countries grew to be one of the most important duties of the higher magistrates, the term province, from designating the government of a conquered country as one particular duty of a Roman magistrate, came to be used generally as a designation of the country itself. Thus in later days it was applied to analogous territorial subdivisions of a country, as opposed to the centre of government; and apart from any territorial signification, the term is used generally for a sphere of duty.

It is to the older sense of the term as a. subject territory lying outside of Italy and governed by Roman magistrates that the following historical remarks a.pply:-

As distinguished from Italy, the provinces paid tribute to Rome, for, at least from the time of the Gracchi, it was a recognized constitutional principle that the provinces were the estates of the Roman people and were to be managed for its benefit. Under the republic the constitution of a province was drawn up by the victorious Roman general assisted by ten commissioners appointed by the senate from its own body, and the province was henceforth governed on the lines laid down in this constitution or charter (lex provincial). For administrative purposes the province was divided into districts, each with its capital, the magistrates and council of which were responsible for the collection of the district taxes. For judicial purposes the province was divided into circuits (convent us), and in the chief town of each circuit the governor of the province regularly held assizes.

I

Only those magistrates who had imperium (military power) had a province. When the province of a quaestor is mentioned it refers to the province of the consul or praetor to whom the quaestor I is subordinate. In familiar language any business was called a province.

xxn. 17

Cities taken by the sword were destroyed, and their lands were turned into Roman domains and were let out by the censors at Rome to private persons, who undertook to pay a certain proportion of the produce. Royal domains, such as those of Syracuse, Macedonia, Pergarnum, Bithynia and Cyrene were also confiscated. On the other hand communities which surrendered without offering an obstinate resistance were usually allowed to retain their personal freedom and private property, and their chief town was left in the enjoyment of its territory and civil rights; but all the lands were subjected to a tax, consisting either of a payment in kind (vectigal) or of a fixed sum of money (tribntnm, stipendium), and in some cases a custom-duty (portoriurn) was levied. It is to this latter class of communities (the civitates vectigoles or stipendiariae) that the large majority of the provincial states belonged. In a better position were those states whose freedom was guaranteed by Rome on the ground of old alliances or 'special loyalty. Their freedom was recognized either by a treaty or by a decree of the Roman people or senate. As a decree of the people or senate could at any time be recalled, the position of the free states without a treaty was more precarious than that of the treaty states (civitates foederatae). The latter, though not allowed to meddle in foreign politics, enjoyed a certain amount of internal freedom, retained their lands, paid no taxes, and were bound to render those services only which were expressly stipulated for in the original' treaty, such as furnishing ships and troops, supplying corn at a certain price and receiving Roman officials and soldiers en route. Amongst these treaty states were Massilia (Marseilles), Athens, Rhodes and Tyre. The privileges of the free but not treaty states were somewhat similar, but, as stated, more precarious. All political distinctions, save that between slave and freeman, disappeared when Caracalla bestowed the Roman franchise on the whole empire.

Provincial Diets.-Apart from the government by Roman officials, every province appears to have had, at least under the empire, a provincial assembly or Diet of its own (conciliurn or commune), and these Diets are interesting as the first attempts at representative assemblies. The Diet met annually, and was composed of deputies (legati), from the provincial districts. It arranged for the celebration of religious rites and games, especia.lly (under the empire) for the worship of the emperor, the neglect of which was severely punished. The actual celebration was under the conduct of the high priest of the province, a person of much dignity and importance, perhaps the forerunner of the Christian bishop. The Diet also decreed the erection of statues and monuments; it passed votes of thanks to the outgoing governor, or forwarded complaints against him to Rome; and it had the right of sending embassies direct to the senate or the . emperor.-The

Provincial Governor.-The provinces were administered by governors sent direct from Rome, who held office for a year. Froin the formation of the first provinces in 227 B.c. down to the time of Sulla (82 B.C.) the governors were praetors (see PRAETOR); from the time of Sulla to that of Augustus the praetors remained in Rome during their year of office, and at the end of it assumed the government of a province with the title of pro praetor. This applies, however, only to provinces which were in a settled state and could consequently be administered without a large military force. A province which was the seat of war, or was at least in a disturbed state, was committed to the care either of one of the consuls for the year or of a commander specially appointed for the purpose with the title of proconsul, who might be one of the consuls of the preceding or of a previous year, or else a former praetor, or even, in rare cases, a private individual who had held neither consulship nor praetor ship. Thus the distinction between consular (or proconsular) and praetorian (or proprietorial) provinces varied from year to year with the military exigencies of different parts of the empire. At the close of the republic, however, we find even such a peaceful province as Asia administered by a proconsul. In the earlier period of the rel public the senate either before or after the elections determined w ich provinces were to be governed by consuls and which by praetors, and after their election the consuls arranged between themselves by lot or otherwise which of the provinces nominated by the senate each should have, and similarly with the praetors. But in order to gluard against partiality the Sempronian law of 123 B.c. provided t at the senate should yearly nominate the two consular provinces before the election of the II