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Ancient Rome

Roman Colosseum

Theme (1): Geography and Early History of Rome

How did the geography of the Italian peninsula affect the early history of Rome?


Geography and Early History:

What did the early history of the expansion ofRome on the Italian peninsula involve? What are the reasons for the success of Roman expansion? Why did Romans create the foundations for empire while the Hellenic Greeks did not? Expansion through war: Site 1
Site 2

Compare Romans with Greeks


Theme (2): The Roman Republic

What was the most splendid political achievement of the Romans in the days of the Republic?

Twelve Tables
Roman law

What determined the nature of social conflict in the Roman Republic? What was the function of the tribune? What was the outcome of the Struggle of the Orders? Social Conflict:


Theme (3): Roman Imperialism and the change in values

What were the causes and results of the First Punic War? What was the nature and outcome of the Second Punic War? ----- the Third Punic war? What circumstances led the Romans to march againstthe Macedonians. Punic Wars  See:
(Expansion through war Site 2) above
What was the role of Paterfamilias in Roman society?What was the status of women? --- of the matron? How was slaveryintroducedinto Roman society? What was the Roman attitude toward towardsslaves? What was the nature of Roman religion? How did they characterizetheirGods? Paterfamilias
  Slavery      Spartacus:
      Roman religion
      Mithras:Note especially the last two paragraphs
What were the effects of Roman imperialism uponthe nature of everyday life among the Romans? What areas conquered by theRomans had the greatest impact on Roman life? Where did the Romans acquire their taste for public baths? What influence did the baths have upon social practices? Everyday life
How is the career of Julius Caesar relate to the civil war that ended the Roman Republic? Civil war

Theme (4): The Roman Empire at its height

What did Caeasar Augustus attempt to do,andwhat was the main basis of his power? How did Augustus disarm his potential critics when he assumed power? Roman Empire
The Principate
What changes were made in regard to the Roman army? How was the army satisfied in spite of its great numbers and potential for discontent? How were the provinces administered under Augustus? Intowhat areas did the empire spread under Augustus? Roman army
How can we describe the writings of Virgil? of Horace? What were the contributions of Livy? of  Seutonius? of Tacitus?

Virgil  : click on his name for short Bio

  Livy    Tacitus  Suetonius

What problems existed in Palestine during the life of Jesus? What were some of the characteristics of Christianity which explain its appeal and spread throughout the Roman Empire?

Jerusalem in Jesus' time
Unrest in Judea:
Scroll to Michael White essay "Tensions in Judea at theTime of Jesus' Birth"

      Christianity: Its Appeal and Spread

What was the principal weakness of Augustus' settlement of affairs after the Fall of the Republic? What were the consequences of that weakness?  The Emperor and the Army: Site (1)
Site (2) TheJulio-Claudians
Why was the 2nd century of the Roman Empire prosperous?What changes occurred in the army during the 2nd and 3rd Centuries? The Antonines

Hallmarks of Roman culture.

Europe and Asia during the period of the Empire?

Life in the Golden Age: Roman architecture, aqueducts, roads, baths, Colosseum
gladiators: Scroll to last paragraphs
The Silk Road

Theme (5):  Imperial Decline and Reconstruction:

Why did the spirit of Pax Romana begin to fadeduring the 3rd Century AD? Barracks Emperors

What had been the role of agriculture in theRoman Empire and how was that changing? What changes in government andadministration were made under the Emperor Diocletian? under Emperor constantine?What economic problems plagued the empire in the 4th Century? What wasDiocletian's response? Describe the effects. 
agriculture: See also articles 02 and 03
      Political Reconstruction
      Inflation: Scroll to "Inflation in the Roman Empire."
To what extent were Christians persecuted by the Roman Empire? Why? Christians in a pagan empire: Scroll to "Christians-A New Family"        Persecution of Christians:
Why did the emperor Constantine accept conversion to Christianity? What important changes were carried out by Constantine? Constantine's conversion:Scroll to CONSTANTINE'S CONVERSION
What was the most likely cause for the decline and fall of the Roman Empire? Decline and Fall

Maps of Antiquity            Maps of Europe AD1: 1000


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