The downfall of the town was accelerated by the illiberal policy of its patrician rulers; and the French Revolution reduced it to such a degree that in 1796 it offered itself and its territories to the king of Prussia on condition that he would pay its debts.
The Catuli and Metelli, among the proudest nobles of Rome, were plebeians, and as such could not have been chosen to the purely patrician office of interrex, or of Jupiter.
The closing of the great council and the creation of the patrician caste brought about a revolution among those who suffered disfranchisement.
A conspicuous instance was the exclusion of Cologne from 1471 until its obedience in 1476, but the penalty had been earlier imposed, as in the case of Brunswick, on towns which overthrew their patrician governments.
Lucius (or Gaius) Minucius, the patrician praefectus annonae (president of the market), thereupon accused him of courting popularity with a view to making himself king.
The wealth of the burghers during this period was equalled by their turbulent spirit of independence; feuds were frequent, - against the rival city of Bruges, against the counts, or, within the city itself, between the plebeian crafts and the patrician governing class.
The four Ionic tribes at Athens seem to have answered very closely to the three patrician tribes at Rome; but the Athenian demos grew up in a different way from the Roman plebs.
In all other cities of the Netherlands the craft gilds remained in humble subjection to a council co-opted from a limited number of wealthy patrician families.
After slavery had fallen Phillips associated himself freely with reformers occupied in other paths, herein separating himself from the other patrician of the movement, Edmund Quincy, who always frankly said that after slavery was abolished there was nothing else worth fighting for.
His mother Domitia Calvilla (or Lucilla) was a lady of consular rank, and the family of his father Annius Verus (prefect of the city and thrice consul), originally Spanish, had received patrician rank from Vespasian.