The Roman Empire
Ancient Roman Empire included the three continents - Europe, Northern Africa and the Middle East. The Roman empire was one of the powerful empires of the ancient world. Historians believe the earliest Roman settlements began in 753 BC. The glory of the Roman Empire was at its peak in 200 AD and the entire empire spanned over an area of 2.5 million square miles. Many of the achievements of the ancient Romans are still in use today.
Some of the Achievements of the Ancient Romans
The Roman Empire was powerful, due to its strong military tactics. Roman military policies helped to expand the empire. The soldiers were trained in the latest tactics of war and were well equipped with the weapons of war.
One of the responsibilities of the legion soldiers was to defend the Roman Empire and not conquest. As the Roman Empire grew, the army consisted of many men captured during the wars.
Roman Art and Literature
The official language of the Roman army and the government officials was Latin. Languages such as Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Romanian and French were derived from Latin.
The Romans developed the alphabets that are widely used in all the European languages, including English. They also developed Roman numerals, which are used today by many to highlight important document points. Ancient Romans gave importance to education and sent their children to schools.
The ancient Romans were interested in creative arts. One such art form was "Mosaic" arts. In mosaic, art was created using small pieces of tiles, glasses or stones. These pieces were arranged on the smooth surface, such as a wall, to form a pattern. The pictures of Roman gods and goddesses, or the images of nature were the subject matter of these mosaic arts. Some mosaic art also depicted the day-to-day life of Roman families.
The Romans were also known for their realistic sculptures. They sculpted life-like sculptures of Roman gods and goddesses and also of their rulers.
Roman literature including drama and poetry became popular and is known as the Golden Age of Roman drama.
The ancient Romans were great architects and builders. As they expanded their empire, they constructed many beautiful buildings and roads. Good roads connected each city of the Roman empire to Rome. The Romans were the first people to introduce the technology of road construction.
They invented the technology for concrete, aqueducts, arches and roads. Ancient Rome was the capital of the Roman empire. When a new city was conquered, roads were made to connect it to Rome. Milestones were installed on the side of the roads, which told the traveler the distance to be to reach Rome. The streets of the ancient Roman cities were laid in a geometric pattern.
Ancient Roman aqueducts were built to carry water from the springs or rivers to the public baths and fountains. These baths had a clever plumbing system to drain the dirty water. Aqueducts were built throughout the Roman empire and many of them are still used and in perfect condition.
Arches were constructed to commemorate the victories of the Roman emperors. These were designed with stone carvings and statues. Some of the examples of the marvelous pieces of architecture are Circus Maximus, the Colosseum and the Pantheon.
Roman laws applied to all Romans, regardless of his position in society. "A person is innocent until proven guilty" is a law invented by the Romans that many countries still use today.
The Ancient Roman Empire was not only powerful but huge and lasted for almost 1,000 years.
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What Made the Romans
How did Rome Become and Empire?
The Romans were good at organizing themselves and as a result were very good at ruling large territories. This was very important in a world where communication was only as fast as a man or a horse. Without it Rome would never have expanded nearly as far or been able to move resources it needed to move around its empire.
The Romans also assimilated the native population or Romanized them. If a city was defeated by the Romans, its citizens were forced from the land or became slaves. However, Rome extended citizenship to the people they conquered. Building things like bath houses, public toilets, aqueducts gave the native people of a conquered land lots of reasons to want the Romans. The Romans didn't just use their technology to make native people happy about being part of the empire. They also gave a people a large amount of trade opportunity ($) with its extensive road network and organisation bringing wealth ($) into newly conquered lands, which made the people happier.
Also Roman auxiliary soldiers never served in the province where they were from so the soldiers in a province would be unlikely to have sympathy (feel badly) for the locals. This worked so well that even when Rome abandoned Britain the people not only wanted her to stay but called themselves Roman, not British or Celtic.
Rome's army played a major part in the expansion of the empire. Even though the Roman legion became the greatest fighting force the world had ever known this was not what made the empire grow. What did was a promise made to the legionaries, that after their service to Rome they would each get a pension in the form of a plot of land from which they could make a living. This pattern of a legion conquering land to provide space for veterans (retired soldiers) to have as their own was what made the empire grow.
But in the end...
Armies can make or break civilizations. In Rome's case the army was responsible for the rise, and eventually, the fall of Rome.
The Roman army was originally created by the Republic of Rome. It was manned by the land-owning
citizens of Rome. It was created to defend the Roman lands against its enemies. The Roman army claimed to attack only to defend Rome against possible invasions. This policy allowed the army to conquer new lands and defeat its enemies.
The Roman army would not have been such an effective fighting machine without being efficient and organized. The Roman army did not defeat its enemies because it had superior technology or numbers but because of an efficient organizational structure that is still mimicked by today's armies.
The Roman army had strict rules to make certain that soldiers wouldn't defect or run from battle. These rules made it possible to keep the army organized.
With the expansion of Rome by its armies , Roman culture was spread throughout the Roman Empire.
Rome expanded to the point that members of the army would spend 20-25 of their lives serving in the army and leaving their farms untended. Some changes had to be made . The Roman army was open to all men not just those who
owned land. Soldiers also received pay for their services.
These changes helped return the landowners to their farms but made big changes in the army. The
new soldiers were more like mercenaries, they fought for and obeyed the person who paid them. They weren't fighting to protect their lands but to get their pay. The soldiers no longer cared about defending Rome... instead they followed their general.
With complete power in the hands of a person (a general, an emperor) who often only held the position because of birthright, Rome was ruled by many incompetent rulers. They could not handle the power. They wasted Rome's resources and neglected the people and army. The damage they caused put the Empire into a state of decline which eventually led to the fall of the Roman Empire . Therefore, the Roman army was responsible for both the rise and fall of Rome.
In the beginning of Rome’s expansion there were many positive characteristics the Roman army developed, such as strict laws and organizational skills. These characteristics helped them to expand quickly and spread Roman culture.