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The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire   79 comments

 

The Rise And Fall Of The Roman Empire (476 A. D)

The Roman Empire clip image

The city of Rome developed over hundreds of years and the passing of numerous wars to be the epicentre of the all-powerful and far-reaching Roman Empire. It grew out of a small Italian town and from the ensuing Empire the English, French and Spanish languages were derived.

Romulus and Remus_She-wolf

The well-known story of Romulus and Remus, dating back to 800 B. C. tells the tale of two brothers initially raised by a she-wolf and later by a shepherd who killed her. After building a city together Remus was killed by his brother Romulus who called the city by the name of Rome.

Ancient Rome was the superpower of its era, recognised for:

  • Military strength
  • Top quality training
  • Greatest financial means
  • Outstanding equipment superior to any other known worldwide at that time

Roman Imperialism

Ancient Rome

Romans embraced their status as masters of the known world. They knew well the art of winning wars and invading territories and retaining power in the colonies created therein by use of political tricks during their years of rule and power.

Romans were known for their:

  • Infrastructure including their Roads (or Via)
  • Engineering feats with bridges and aqua ducts
  • Built primarily to enable for fast movement of their military

Gladitorial Games

The Etruscans – a people of unknown origin from the located to the North of Rome, with their vast army and strange language, were Italy’s first particularly civilized people. Their women had rights of their own, went out in public places and even owned property. The Etruscans were a people skilled in mining, metal working, farming and trading (merchants). Men and women alike took pleasure in both music and dancing and contributed much to the civilization of Rome.

  • Sewage systems
  • Gladiatorial games
  • Arch for bridge building

Roman Soldier clip art

The Romans also realized they would need to win hearts and minds of the peoples and their cultures if they were to excel at the art of winning wars. They did this in a variety of ways including the providing of baths and central heating so that people did not realize they were being lulled into subjugation to their Roman masters.

Achievements of the Roman Empire

Some of the most important emperors who did both great and terrible things all too frequently at the same time:

  • The Great Rhine Wall and an enormous Forum were just two of the many structures built around Rome by Emperor Trajan
  • Emperor Hadrian was responsible for the famous “Hadrian’s Wall” that separates Britain and Scotland
  • Mighty victories were won over German peoples by Emperor Marcus Aurelius, also famous for his writing and known as the “Philosopher- King
  • Famous for bring Christianity to the Roman Empire as the official religion Emperor Constantine also named the Roman Capital, which he moved to Turkey(today), in his own honour, “Constantinople.”

The Decline And Fall Of The Roman Empire

The Fall of Rome

This occurred primarily due to lack of foresight

Ancient Romans erroneously supposed that the colossal differences in culture, economy and social life could be spanned by compelling the conquered societies, to take up the “roman” way. But ultimately any attempt to create a government or society that does not deal with these crucial aspects of observing the heart and soul of social and cultural backbone, and the spirit of a society, is doomed to meet with failure before it even begins.

“The Pax Romana” This brief period of peace lasted for around 200 years and marked the beginning the slow decline of Rome.

  • The empire grew to such a huge size that it became impossible to allow for effective governing
  • There was serious corruption within the military, at all levels
  • Conflicting political bodies entered into Civil Wars
  • Badly chosen Emperors who were the Head of Government at the time were often weak, incapable leaders who had either inherited the title or gained it through violence.
  • Unemployment amongst the Romans was on the rise due to the increasingly popular practice of using slaves
  • The rich became lazy and complacent regarding the solving of problems within the City of Rome
  • The average poor Roman was both overtaxed and overworked
  • Alongside an increase in prices there was a decrease in trade
  • Inevitably starvation and disease set in, shrinking the size of the population
  • Farm and government management became increasingly difficult and ineffective.
  • The Roman Empire itself also slid into a slow and steady spiral of shrinking

Barbarian Invasions_of_the_Roman_Empire Credit Wikipedia.org

Despite the Ancient Romans splitting the Roman Empire in half with an emperor for both East and West the Western Roman Empire did not fare well. Instead of protecting their borders Roman soldiers began fighting amongst themselves. This allowed outsiders to invade and overrun Rome.

  • Visigoths, the Huns, the Germans, the Persian, the Slavs, and the Avars.

By late 400s A. D the invaders had taken over and the Roman Empire was no more. By 476 A.D German soldier Odoacer the Barbarian defeated the Roman legions, captured the city of Rome and killed the Roman Emperor. He then went on to name himself king of Italy. This was considered by many historians to be the official date that Rome finally fell.

The East Roman Empire which also contained the capital city of Constantinople in Turkey – Istanbul, was renamed the Byzantine Empire which thrived for another 1000 years.

Credit: http:en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FileInvasions_of_the_Roman_Empire_1.png