Brief History of Rome
The Roman Senate was established as an advisory body to the Etruscan kings. The Kings were eventually replaced with a republic (a Republic is a country without a king or emperor - the people who rule a republic are elected). This section of the Brief History of Rome ends with the fall of the Kingdom of Rome and the rise of the Roman Republic
Brief History of Rome - The Roman Republic
The Brief History of Rome move on to the establishment of the Roman Republic. Definition: A Republic is a country without a king or emperor - the people who rule a republic are elected. The Roman Republic was the ancient Roman state which started in 509 BC and lasted until the Emperor Augustus assumed power in 27 BC.
*** The Roman Republic was governed by an elected Senate
*** The 300 members of the Roman senate, all from aristocratic families, grew in power
*** The senators were appointed for life
*** The senators selected new senators to replace any who died
*** Senators also appointed two senators to become joint heads of state for a year. These heads of state were first known as praetors and later as consuls
*** Each consul had the power of veto to forbid any action of the other
*** To avoid serious stalemates in a crisis the constitution of the republic provided for another more powerful office with the title of dictator
*** A Dictator could only hold office for a period not exceeding six months
*** In the Roman Republic the wealthy, aristocratic Patricians ruled Rome
*** The poor Romans, the Plebeians (Plebs), protested at their total lack of power and exclusion form any benefits of the Republic
*** The protests of the Plebs led to the creation of two powerful new officials called the tribunes of the people whose role was to safeguard plebeian rights.
*** The 500-year-old Roman Republic became weakened by bloody civil wars and political in-fighting and dissatisfaction with the Senate and therefore its decline
*** Julius Caesar seized power and became dictator, ending the Civil Wars, but signalling the end of the Roman Republic
*** The adoptive son of Julius Caesar, Octavian, became the first Emperor of Rome as Caesar Augustus
This section of the Brief History of Rome ends with the fall of the Roman Republic and the rise of the Roman Empire
Brief History of Rome- The Roman Empire
The Brief History of Rome moves on to the history of the Roman Empire. During this period Rome conquers most of the known Western World headed by rulers called emperors.
*** There were various dynasties of emperors who at first inherited the title through the family such as Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius and Nero.
*** Other emperors obtained the position by virtue of their abilities
*** Other men just seized power
*** The Roman Empire saw wars, murder, revolts, civil wars, street fights, plagues, famines, fire and earthquakes which led to its weakening and ultimate decline
*** Famous historical events during the period of the Roman Empire included the lost legions of Varus, the reign of terror by Sejanus, the invasion of Britain and the great fire of Rome, Destruction of Jerusalem, the Eruption of Vesuvius and the Building of the Colosseum, Hadrian's Wall and the Pantheon, persecutions of the Christians, Roman Empire was split in half and invasion by the Visigoths and the Vandals
*** The split of the Roman Empire was initiated by Diocletian into the Western Roman Empire and the Eastern Roman Empire aka the Byzantine Empire
*** Theodosius I was the last emperor of both the Eastern and Western Roman Empire. After his death in 395 AD the two parts of the Roman Empire were split permanently.
*** The city of Rome was sacked by the Visigoths in 410 and by the Vandals in 455 signalling the disintegration of Roman authority and the final Fall of the Roman Empire.
This section of the Brief History of Rome ends when the Western Roman Empire officially ends with the abdication of the last Emperor, Romulus Augustus, on 4 September 476. The Eastern (Byzantium Empire) continued for nearly 1000 more years.
Brief History of Rome
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