Friday, March 7, 2008

Fall of Rome with an insight on Gibbon

Rome fell for many reasons. Each one had something to do with each other. Much later in time a man named Edward Gibbon stated his opinion on the topic. In this essay we will cover the many reasons for the fall of Rome and see if Gibbon was correct with his assumptions.

The first reason was the decline in the moral values and the second is the public health. With a decline in the moral values in the citizens they could not keep the Roman legions together and the empire was hard to keep control toward the end. The public health was also declining. Disease was more and more prone to spread, through all the gladiatorial games and the wealthy was also dying due to the led pipes containing their water supply.

The third and forth reasons for the fall of Rome is the Political corruption and the unemployment of many of the citizens. Without a smooth system of choosing a new emperor the city went through turmoil. Many emperors were assassinated which also weakened the empire. With the unemployment in the city, crime went up tremendously. With people loosing their farms more and more ended up on the streets.Source

The last reason that some state for the fall of Rome is the spreading of Christianity. This is the reason Gibbon states for the fall. Many believe that the Romans were made into pacifists and made it harder for the city to attack against barbarians. Also many believe that the money used to build churches could have been used to fund the empire. But the true final reason for the fall of Rome still remains. (Barnett 77)

The true final end to the Roman empire was the when the Romans troops were pulled from defending from the Germans and was told to fight a civil war in Italy. Gradually the Germans began to take over the city. Then in 476 A. D. General form Germany Odovacar took over the empire by getting rid of the last Roman Emperor, Augustulus Romulus. Then Rome no longer existed. (Hadas 146)

Now we have exposed the true reasons for the fall of Rome. Christianity as said by Gibbon was the leading cause of the fall of the Roman Empire. I believe that it was because of the final capture by the Germans. They could see that the country was weakening and the ceased the opportunity. Sadly Rome did fall and the great city of Italy came to a bitter end.

Barnett, Mary. Gods and Myths of the Romans: The Archaeology and Mythology of AncientPeoples. Smithmark Publishers. New York. 1996

Hadas, Moses. Imperial Rome. Time Inc Publishers. Canada 1965

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Roman Roads

The Roman roads were built for very specific reasons. One reason was for army's behalf. The other reason was for the fact of speed and trade. These roads help advance the Roman culture far ahead of its time.

The Roman army had a hard time getting around Britain because of all of the mud and grass tracks. It was a pain for the army to travel in this matter especially when the roads went in ways no one could figure out. It took a lot of extra time to follow the paths laid out by the British. This is one of the reasons for the building of the Roman roads. (Hadas 56)

Another reason for the building of the roads was the fact that trade and easy moving about the country wasn't so easy. Trade took a lot more time than it should have and
the emperor was greatly affected by speed as well. More trade and the faster it went the more taxing the emperor could do. This was very important to the emperor.

The Roman roads were built in a certain way too, like the way our roads are built only a little bit more old fashioned. There was a ditch for drainage and the roads were tri leveled. The first level was large stones or tiles, the second level was small stones, and the top level was gravel or cobbles. Over the tri leveled road was a curved surface called a camber. The large stones provide support for the travelers and the curved arch of the road helped with drainage. The small stones provided a hard enough surface for the travelers above and all of their belongings.Source

In conclusion the Roman roads had two main purposes. The helped with trade but more importantly the helped with the transporting of the Roman soldiers. These roads paved the way for the roads of our time. (Barnett 89)

Barnett, Mary. Gods and Myths of the Romans: The Archaeology and Mythology of Ancient
Smithmark Publishers. New York. 1996

Hadas, Moses. Imperial Rome. Time Inc Publishers. Canada 1965