Roman Citizens

The Roman Empire

Calling to mind the extent of the Roman Empire in Caracalla’s day helps us better understand the significance of the Constitutio Antoniniana.

Citizens and Foreigners

Whether a person had Roman citizenship or not had far-reaching social and legal consequences. Many non-citizens therefore did what they could to attain citizenship, which was possible for those committed to achieving that status. Caracalla granted Roman citizenship to all free inhabitants of the empire when he issued the Constitutio Antoniniana edict, putting an end to discrimination for many people.

Citizenship rights

Roman citizenship guaranteed legal privileges, which meant that the Constitutio Antoniniana ended disadvantages for the new citizens and clarified their legal status. These improvements pertained to criminal law as well as private and tax law.