Plebs It is a term that comes from Latin plebs. The concept is used to name the social stratum which is in the lower ladder of the structure of the society . This means that the plebs is the lower class , a denomination that is used to group all people who fail to meet their basic needs and who are marginalized from progress.
The most common use of the notion is found in ancient times, in the time in which social stratification was more evident and there was no mobility (a member of the lower class could never access a higher stratum). At that time, it was easy to differentiate between plebs , the nobility , he clergy and the military .
The members of the plebs, in general, had no property, so they remained in the poverty . There were, anyway, commoners that they had a certain wealth and that they could exert their influence on society.
Historically, the plebs enjoyed fewer civil rights than the rest of the social classes. That is why its members began to struggle to receive a more equitable treatment, which caused numerous struggles until the fall of the Old Regime .
It is important to know that in Ancient Rome there was what was called Tribuno de la Plebe. This came to be a position occupied by those who were responsible for defending the commoners. Of the same, it is worth knowing these interesting data:
-It was chosen by the citizens who formed the aforementioned plebs.
-At first, there were only two people with that position. However, as time went by they increased and reached up to ten.
- It is considered that the person in charge of shaping said title was none other than the dictator Manio Valerio Máximo. Its objective was none other than to have the people "happy" and prevent them from shaping some kind of revolution, as previously attempted.
-Who held the position of Tribune of the Plebe was considered to be protected, fundamentally from suffering any physical damage.
In addition to all of the above, it should be borne in mind that this position was expanding its capabilities until reaching an important number of functions, among which the following would stand out:
-I could veto the decisions of the consuls and the magistrates of the Senate.
-I had the ability to ensure that a commoner did not do military service.
- It could prevent, if it considered it opportune, that any commoner, for having an insolvency situation, was treated like a slave.
- He could also sue when necessary to consuls, high magistrates and Roman citizens in general. He did that through the figure of the bailiffs.
At present, the idea of plebs is almost not used. Its use usually includes a ironic element or the intention to highlight the marginal status of a certain social group. For example: "Those of us who are part of the plebs have no chance of accessing the benefits that entrepreneurs enjoy", “The plebs, once again, had to limit themselves to watching the party of the rich from outside”.