The net effect was mixed. For some periods, it stalled its expansion – that is while there was actual warfare between contending Roman leaders. In the periods between, the expansion went on apace, particularly in the east, where successively Sulla, Lucullus and Pompey progressively subdued Asia Minor, Syria, Palestine and established new provinces or client kingships.

At their conclusion, it left an autocrat Augustus who allocated the frontier provinces and the legions to himself, and set about limiting expansion and stabilising defendable borders on the Rhine and Danube, and in North Africa, Egypt and Anatolia-Syria-Palestine-Arabia. Within those borders he attempted to establish good and stable government, modifying the settlements of his predecessors by endorsing the client kings or converting troublesome border areas to Roman provinces.

Augustus also had to effect the re-settlement of half a million soldiers after the wars, establishing military colonies throughout the empire, which had a secondary stabilising effect.

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