The constitution of the Roman republic gave the whole legislative power to the people, without allowing a negative voice either to the nobility or consuls. This unbounded power they possessed in a collective, not in a representative body. The consequences were: When the people, by success and conquest, had become very numerous, and had spread themselves to a great distance from the capital, the city-tribes, though the most contemptible, carried almost every vote: They were, therefore, most cajoled by every one that affected popularity: They were supported in idleness by the general distribution of corn, and by particular bribes, which they received from almost every candidate: By this means, they became every day more licentious, and the Campus Martius was a perpetual scene of tumult and sedition: Armed slaves were introduced among these rascally citizens; so that the whole government fell into anarchy, and the greatest happiness, which the Romans could look for, was the despotic power of the C æ ae originally 'æ'; separated to make searching the text easier sars . Such are the effects of democracy without a representative.
Petrarch collected his letters into two major sets of books called Epistolae familiares (" Letters on Familiar Matters ") and Seniles (" Letters of Old Age "), both of which are available in English translation.  The plan for his letters was suggested to him by knowledge of Cicero 's letters. These were published "without names" to protect the recipients, all of whom had close relationships to Petrarch. The recipients of these letters included Philippe de Cabassoles , bishop of Cavaillon ; Ildebrandino Conti , bishop of Padua ; Cola di Rienzo , tribune of Rome; Francesco Nelli , priest of the Prior of the Church of the Holy Apostles in Florence ; and Niccolò di Capoccia , a cardinal and priest of Saint Vitalis . His "Letter to Posterity" (the last letter in Seniles )  gives an autobiography and a synopsis of his philosophy in life. It was originally written in Latin and was completed in 1371 or 1372 - the first such autobiography in a thousand years (since Saint Augustine ).