Lucius Appuleius Saturninus was a figure of the ancient Roman
world. He was born to a praetorian
family and served his first government function as the quaestor
of agriculture production in Ostia
. During a drought
in 104 BCE
, it was his duty to make sure an adequate supply of corn
would get to Rome
. He failed. This disgrace led to his replacement by a leader of the senate and discharge into a lower position on the tribune of plebs
from 103 to 100.
The embarassment of the incident permanantly changed Saturninus' views on government, making him violently anti-senatorial for the rest of his life. Just the slightest of a grudge, there. Beginning political manipulations immediately as soon as he entered into the tribune, he allied with Marius. In a quid pro quo relationship, Saturnius helped Marius acquire land for his coalition of veteran warriors, and in turn Marius threw his support in for several popular measures in the tribune against opposition. Saturnius did whatever he could to make sure his will was enacted, resorting sometimes to violence with the help of a praetor, Glaucia. The alliance prospered and Saturninus regained much of his former prestige and influence.
He overstepped his bounds, however, when he threw his weight behind Glaucia for consulship in 99. Conveniently, Glaucia's rival was assassinated. Imagine that. Before the shit hit the fan, Marius smartly disassociated himself with both Saturninus and Glaucia, leaving them open to the full retaliation of the senate. To seal his own political fortunes and prevent any further fallout from the assassination fiasco, Marius himself commissioned the execution of Saturninus and Glaucia with the backing of the senate.