Consul

Consul (abbrev. cos.; Latin plural consules) was the title of one of the chief magistrates of the Roman Republic, and subsequently a somewhat significant title under the Roman Empire. The title was used in other European city states through antiquity and the Middle Ages, then revived in modern states, notably in the First French Republic. The relating adjective is consular, from the consularis.

This usage contrasts with modern terminology, where a consul is a type of diplomat.

Roman consul

A consul held the highest elected political office of the Roman Republic (509 to 27 BC), and ancient Romans considered the consulship the highest level of the cursus honorum (an ascending sequence of public offices to which politicians aspired).

See also

Other uses in antiquity

Private sphere

It was not uncommon for an organization under Roman private law to copy the terminology of state and city institutions for its own statutory agents. The founding statute, or contract, of such an organisation was called lex, 'law'. The people elected each year were patricians, members of the upper class.

City states

While many cities (as in Gaul) had a double-headed chief magistracy, often another title was used, such as Duumvir or native styles such as Meddix, but consul was used in some.

Medieval city states, communes and municipalities

Throughout most of southern France, a consul (French: consul or consule) was an office equivalent to the échevins of the north and roughly similar with English aldermen. The most prominent were those of Bordeaux and Toulouse, which came to be known as jurats and capitouls, respectively. The capitouls of Toulouse were granted transmittable nobility. In many other smaller towns the first consul, was the equivalent of a mayor today, assisted by a variable number of secondary consuls and jurats. His main task was to levy and collect tax.

The Dukes of Gaeta often used also the title of "consul" in its Greek form "Hypatos" (see List of Hypati and Dukes of Gaeta).

The city-state of Genoa, unlike ancient Rome, bestowed the title of consul on various state officials, not necessarily restricted to the highest. Among these were Genoese officials stationed in various Mediterranean ports, whose role included helping Genoese merchants and sailors in difficulties with the local authorities. This institution, with its name, was later emulated by other powers and is reflected in the modern usage of the word (see Consul (representative)).

French Revolution

French Republic 1799–1804

3consuls
A portrait of the three consuls, Jean Jacques Régis de Cambacérès, Napoleon Bonaparte and Charles-François Lebrun (left to right)

After Napoleon Bonaparte staged a coup against the Directory government in November 1799, the French Republic adopted a constitution which conferred executive powers upon three consuls, elected for a period of ten years. In reality, the first consul, Bonaparte, dominated his two colleagues and held supreme power, soon making himself consul for life (1802) and eventually, in 1804, emperor.

The office was held by:

Bolognese Republic, 1796

The short-lived Bolognese Republic, proclaimed in 1796 as a French client republic in the Central Italian city of Bologna, had a government consisting of nine consuls and its head of state was the Presidente del Magistrato, i.e., chief magistrate, a presiding office held for four months by one of the consuls. Bologna already had consuls at some parts of its Medieval history.

Roman Republic, 1798–1800

The French-sponsored Roman Republic (15 February 1798 – 23 June 1800) was headed by multiple consuls:

  • Francesco Riganti, Carlo Luigi Costantini, Duke Bonelli-Crescenzi, Antonio Bassi, Gioacchino Pessuti, Angelo Stampa, Domenico Maggi, provisional consuls (15 February – 20 March 1798)
  • Liborio Angelucci, Giacomo De Mattheis, Panazzi, Reppi, Ennio Quirino Visconti, consuls (20 March – September 1798)
  • Brigi, Calisti, Francesco Pierelli, Giuseppe Rey, Federico Maria Domenico Michele, Zaccaleoni, consuls (September – 24 July 1799)

Consular rule was interrupted by the Neapolitan occupation (27 November – 12 December 1798), which installed a Provisional Government:

  • Prince Giambattista Borghese, Prince Paolo-Maria Aldobrandini, Prince Gibrielli, Marchese Camillo Massimo, Giovanni Ricci (29 November 1798 - 12 December 1798)

Rome was occupied by France (11 July – 28 September 1799) and again by Naples (30 September 1799 – 23 June 1800), bringing an end to the Roman Republic.

Revolutionary Greece, 1821

Among the many petty local republics that were formed during the first year of the Greek Revolution, prior to the creation of a unified Provisional Government at the First National Assembly at Epidaurus, were:

  • The Consulate of Argos (from 26 May 1821, under the Senate of the Peloponnese) had a single head of state, styled consul, 28 March 1821 – 26 May 1821: Stamatellos Antonopoulos
  • The Consulate of East Greece (Livadeia) (from 15 November 1821, under the Areopagus of East Greece) was headed 1 April 1821 – 15 November 1821 by three consuls: Lambros Nakos, Ioannis Logothetis & Ioannis Filon

Note: in Greek, the term for "consul" is "hypatos" (ὕπατος), which translates as "supreme one", and hence does not necessarily imply a joint office.

Paraguay, 1813–1844

In between a series of juntas and various other short-lived regimes, the young republic was governed by "consuls of the republic", with two consuls alternating in power every 4 months:

After a few presidents of the Provisional Junta, there were again consuls of the republic, 14 March 1841 – 13 March 1844 (ruling jointly, but occasionally styled "first consul", "second consul"): Carlos Antonio López Ynsfrán (b. 1792 – d. 1862) + Mariano Roque Alonzo Romero (d. 1853) (the lasts of the aforementioned juntistas, Commandant-General of the Army) Thereafter all republican rulers were styled "president".

Modern uses of the term

In modern terminology, a consul is a type of diplomat. The American Heritage Dictionary defines consul as "an official appointed by a government to reside in a foreign country and represent its interests there."

In most governments, the consul is the head of the consular section of an embassy, and is responsible for all consular services such as immigrant and non-immigrant visas, passports, and citizen services for expatriates living or traveling in the host country.

A less common modern usage is when the consul of one country takes a governing role in the host country.

See also

Differently named, but same function

Modern UN System

Sources and references

Consul (representative)

A consul is an official representative of the government of one state in the territory of another, normally acting to assist and protect the citizens of the consul's own country, and to facilitate trade and friendship between the people of the two countries.A consul is distinguished from an ambassador, the latter being a representative from one head of state to another. There can be only one ambassador from one country to another, representing the first country's head of state to that of the second, and his or her duties revolve around diplomatic relations between the two countries; however, there may be several consuls, one in each of several major cities, providing assistance with bureaucratic issues to both the citizens of the consul's own country traveling or living abroad and to the citizens of the country in which the consul resides who wish to travel to or trade with the consul's country.

A less common usage is an administrative consul, who takes a governing role and is appointed by a country that has colonised or occupied another.

Consulate General of the United States, Hong Kong and Macau

The Consulate General of the United States, Hong Kong and Macau represents the United States in the Hong Kong and Macau Special Administrative Regions of the People's Republic of China.It has been located at 26 Garden Road, Central, Hong Kong Island, Hong Kong since the late 1950s. The current Consul General is Kurt W. Tong, who has served since July 2016.Due to Hong Kong and Macau's special status, and in accordance with the United States–Hong Kong Policy Act, the U.S. Consulate General to Hong Kong operates as an independent mission, with the Consul General as the "Chief of Mission" (with title of "Ambassador)". The Consul General to Hong Kong and Macau is not under the jurisdiction of the United States Ambassador to China, and reports directly to the U.S. Department of State as do other Chiefs of Mission, who are Ambassadors in charge of Embassies.All recent Consuls-General are at the Career Minister rank in the U.S. Senior Foreign Service, whereas many other Ambassadors are only Minister Counsellor.

Cursus honorum

The cursus honorum (Latin: "course of offices") was the sequential order of public offices held by aspiring politicians in both the Roman Republic and the early Roman Empire. It was designed for men of senatorial rank. The cursus honorum comprised a mixture of military and political administration posts. Each office had a minimum age for election. There were minimum intervals between holding successive offices and laws forbade repeating an office.These rules were altered and flagrantly ignored in the course of the last century of the Republic. For example, Gaius Marius held consulships for five years in a row between 104 BC and 100 BC. He was consul seven times in all, also serving in 107 and 86. Officially presented as opportunities for public service, the offices often became mere opportunities for self-aggrandizement. The reforms of Sulla required a ten-year interval before holding the same office again for another term.To have held each office at the youngest possible age (suo anno, "in his own year") was considered a great political success. For instance to miss out on a praetorship at 39 meant that one could not become consul at 42. Cicero expressed extreme pride not only in being a novus homo ("new man"; comparable to a "self-made man") who became consul even though none of his ancestors had ever served as a consul, but also in having become consul "in his year".

Diplomatic mission

A diplomatic mission or foreign mission is a group of people from one state or an organisation present in another state to represent the sending state/organisation officially in the receiving state. In practice, a diplomatic mission usually denotes the resident mission, namely the embassy, which is the main office of a country's diplomatic representatives to another country, usually but not necessarily the receiving state's capital city. Consulates, on the other hand, are smaller diplomatic missions which are normally located outside the capital of the receiving state (but can be located in the capital, usually when the sending country has no embassy in the receiving state). As well as being a diplomatic mission to the country in which it is situated, it may also be a non-resident permanent mission to one or more other countries. There are thus resident and non-resident embassies.

Ford Consul

The Ford Consul is a car that was manufactured by Ford UK from 1951 to 1962. The name was later revived for a model produced by Ford in both Britain and Germany from 1972 to 1975.

Between 1951 and 1962, the Consul was the four-cylinder base model of the three-model Ford Zephyr range, comprising Consul, Zephyr, and Zephyr Zodiac. In 1956, the line was restyled. In 1962, the Consul was replaced by the Zephyr 4, the mid-range Zephyr model becoming the Zephyr 6, and the top-of-the-range Zephyr Zodiac just being called the Zodiac. At this point, Consul became a range of smaller cars in its own right, initially the Consul Classic and Consul Capri, shortly joined by the even smaller Consul Cortina. The Consul Classic was only made for two years (August 1961 - March 1963), before being replaced by the Consul Corsair. The Consul Capri was made from October 1961 until August 1964.

The Consul Classic, the Consul Capri, and the Consul Corsair (made from 1963 until 1970) were relatively short-lived, but the Ford Cortina, after losing (along with the Corsair) the "Consul" tag in 1964, went on to become a best-seller. The Consul name was again used by Ford from 1972 to 1975 on a replacement for the Zephyr range, now sharing a body with the more luxurious Ford Granada Mark I. The two-door coupé Capri's name was also reintroduced in 1969, and survived until 1986.

Ford Zephyr

The Ford Zephyr is a car that was manufactured by Ford of Britain from 1950 to 1972. Initially, the four cylinder version was named Ford Consul but from 1962 both four- and six-cylinder versions were named Zephyr, the Consul name having been discontinued on this line of cars.

The Zephyr, and its luxury variants, the Ford Zodiac and Ford Executive, were the largest passenger cars in the British Ford range from 1950 until their replacement by the Consul and Granada models in 1972.

French Consulate

The Consulate (French: Le Consulat) was the top level Government of France from the fall of the Directory in the coup of Brumaire on 10 November 1799 until the start of the Napoleonic Empire on 18 May 1804. By extension, the term The Consulate also refers to this period of French history.

During this period, Napoleon Bonaparte, as First Consul, established himself as the head of a more authoritarian, autocratic, and centralized republican government in France while not declaring himself sole ruler. Due to the long-lasting institutions established during these years, Robert B. Holtman has called the Consulate "one of the most important periods of all French history." Napoleon brought authoritarian personal rule which has been viewed as military dictatorship.

Gaius Marius

Gaius Marius (; 157 BC – January 13, 86 BC) was a Roman general and statesman. He held the office of consul an unprecedented seven times during his career. He was also noted for his important reforms of Roman armies, authorizing recruitment of landless citizens, eliminating the manipular military formations, and reorganizing the structure of the legions into separate cohorts. Marius defeated the invading Germanic tribes (the Teutones, Ambrones, and the Cimbri), for which he was called "the third founder of Rome." His life and career were significant in Rome's transformation from Republic to Empire.

Head of mission

In diplomatic usage, head of mission (HOM) or chief of mission (COM) from the French "chef de mission diplomatique" (CMD) is the head of a diplomatic representation, such as an ambassador, high commissioner, nuncio, chargé d'affaires, permanent representative, and to a consul-general or consul. Depending on the context, it may also refer to the heads of certain international organizations' representative offices. Certain other titles or usages that would qualify as a head of mission or equivalent also exist. While they are primarily referred to by the other titles mentioned above, it is common for the diplomatic corps of several countries to use deputy head of mission or deputy chief of mission (DCM) as the primary title for the second in command of a diplomatic mission.

In diplomatic missions and foreign services where ambassadors may be political appointees rather than career diplomats, the deputy chief of mission may be the senior career foreign service professional and generally understood to be more than a "deputy."

Heads of offices of international organizations below this diplomatic rank who are that organization's senior official in country, such as a project manager, and of private sector organizations and firms are commonly called "chiefs of party" to distinguish them from "chiefs of mission."

Chef de Mission is also the title of the team manager of a national delegation in major international multi-discipline sporting events, such as the Olympic Games.

Legatus

A legatus (anglicized as legate) was a high-ranking Roman military officer in the Roman Army, equivalent to a modern high-ranking general officer. Initially used to delegate power, the term became formalized under Augustus as the officer in command of a legion.

From the times of the Roman Republic, legates received large shares of the military's rewards at the end of a successful campaign. This made the position a lucrative one, so it could often attract even distinguished consuls or other high-ranking political figures within Roman politics (e.g., the consul Lucius Julius Caesar volunteered late in the Gallic Wars as a legate under his first cousin once removed, Gaius Julius Caesar).

List of Roman consuls

This is a list of consuls known to have held office, from the beginning of the Roman Republic to the latest use of the title in Imperial times, together with those magistrates of the Republic who were appointed in place of consuls, or who superseded consular authority for a limited period.

List of Roman generals

Roman generals were often career statesmen, remembered by history for reasons other than their service in the Roman Army. This page encompasses men whom history remembers for their accomplishments commanding Roman armies on land and sea.

List of diplomatic missions in Chennai

This is a list of diplomatic missions in Chennai. Governments of several foreign nations have established diplomatic and trade representation in the city of Chennai. Many of them are at the consulate-general or deputy high commission level, in addition to a number of honorary consulates, with their respective embassies located at New Delhi. The consular presence in the city dates back to 1794, when William Abbott was appointed U.S. consular agent for South India. As of 2017, there are 73 foreign diplomatic consulates in Chennai, including 38 honorary consulates. The list is of countries that have established a resident consular presence in the city.

For other diplomatic missions in India, see List of diplomatic missions in India.

List of state leaders in the 2nd century BC

State leaders in the 3rd century BC – State leaders in the 1st century BC – State leaders by yearThis is a list of state leaders in the 2nd century BC (200–101 BC).

List of state leaders in the 3rd century BC

State leaders in the 4th century BC – State leaders in the 2nd century BC – State leaders by yearThis is a list of state leaders in the 3rd century BC (300–201 BC).

List of state leaders in the 4th century BC

State leaders in the 5th century BC – State leaders in the 3rd century BC – State leaders by yearThis is a list of state leaders in the 4th century BC (400–301 BC).

List of state leaders in the 5th century BC

State leaders in the 6th century BC – State leaders in the 4th century BC – State leaders by yearThis is a list of state leaders in the 5th century BC (500–401 BC).

Proconsul

A proconsul was an official of ancient Rome who acted on behalf of a consul. A proconsul was typically a former consul. The term is also used in recent history for officials with delegated authority.

In the Roman Republic, military command, or imperium, could be exercised constitutionally only by a consul. There were two consuls at a time, each elected to yahoo one-year term. They could not normally serve two terms in a row. If a military campaign was in progress at the end of a consul's term, the consul in command might be appointed as proconsul by the Senate when his term expired. This custom allowed for continuity of command despite the high turnover of consuls. In the Roman Empire, proconsul was a title held by a civil governor and did not imply military command.

In modern times, various officials with notable delegated authority have been referred to as proconsuls. Studies of leadership typically divide leaders into policymakers and subordinate administrators. The proconsul occupies a position between these two categories. Max Weber classified leadership as traditional, rational-legal (bureaucratic), and charismatic. A proconsul could be both a rule-following bureaucrat and charismatic personality. The rise of bureaucracy and rapid communication has reduced the scope for proconsular freelancing.

Roman consul

A consul held the highest elected political office of the Roman Republic (509 to 27 BC), and ancient Romans considered the consulship the highest level of the cursus honorum (an ascending sequence of public offices to which politicians aspired).

Each year, the citizens of Rome elected two consuls to serve jointly for a one-year term. The consuls alternated in holding imperium each month, and a consul's imperium extended over Rome, Italy, and the provinces. However, after the establishment of the Empire (27 BC), the consuls became mere symbolic representatives of Rome's republican heritage and held very little power and authority, with the Emperor acting as the supreme authority.

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