The state of Ancient Rome was centered on the city of Rome. The events leading up to the foundation of the republic in 509 BC, the establishment of the empire in 27 BC, and the final eclipse of the Empire of the West in the 5th century AD, beginning with the founding of the city and the regal period in 753 BC.
Rome has to be considered one of history’s most successful imperial nations. Over the centuries, Rome expanded from a small town on the Tiber River in central Italy to a vast empire that eventually embraced England, all of continental Europe west of the Rhine and south of the Danube, most of Asia west of the Euphrates, northern Africa, and the Mediterranean islands.
Ancient Rome was a fascinating civilization that left a lasting impact on the world. In this article How Africa has compiled 20 facts you should know about the Ancient Rome:
1. Ancient Rome was founded in 753 BCE on the Italian peninsula, near the Tiber River.
2. The legendary story of Romulus and Remus, twin brothers raised by a she-wolf, is often associated with the founding of Rome.
3. Rome was initially a monarchy, but it later evolved into a republic in 509 BCE, after the overthrow of the last Roman king, Tarquin the Proud.
4. The Roman Republic was characterized by a system of checks and balances, with elected magistrates and a Senate that represented the interests of the aristocracy.
5. One of the most significant Roman achievements was the establishment of a vast network of roads, which facilitated trade, communication, and military movements throughout the empire.
6. The Roman Empire was born in 27 BCE when Octavian (later known as Augustus) became the first Roman Emperor, marking the end of the Roman Republic.
7. The Colosseum, also known as the Flavian Amphitheatre, was an iconic Roman structure used for gladiatorial contests, public spectacles, and other events.
8. Roman society was divided into classes: Patricians (wealthy aristocrats) and Plebeians (common people). Social mobility was limited, but some individuals could rise in status through military or political achievements.
9. The Roman Pantheon is one of the best-preserved ancient Roman buildings. It was initially a temple dedicated to all the gods of Rome.
10. Roman law formed the basis for many modern legal systems. The Twelve Tables, a code of laws, was one of the earliest examples of Roman legislation.
11. The Roman legions were well-disciplined and highly organized military units that played a crucial role in expanding and maintaining the empire.
12. Julius Caesar, a prominent Roman general and statesman, played a significant role in the transformation of the Roman Republic into an empire. He was assassinated in 44 BCE.
13. The Roman Empire reached its territorial peak during the reign of Trajan (98-117 CE), encompassing around 5 million square kilometers (1.9 million square miles).
14. Latin was the official language of Ancient Rome, and it later evolved into the Romance languages (Italian, Spanish, French, Portuguese, etc.).
15. The Roman aqueducts were engineering marvels that supplied water to the cities, improving sanitation and public health.
16. Roman mythology heavily influenced art, literature, and culture throughout the empire. Their gods and goddesses were often associated with Greek counterparts.
17. The Roman calendar, initially lunar-based, underwent several reforms. The Julian calendar, introduced by Julius Caesar, became the precursor to the modern Gregorian calendar.
18. Roman architecture featured elements such as arches, vaults, and domes, which significantly influenced later architectural styles.
19. The eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 CE destroyed the cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum, preserving them in a remarkable state and providing valuable insights into Roman daily life.
20. The decline of the Western Roman Empire began in the 3rd century CE and was marked by internal strife, economic difficulties, and external invasions. It officially fell in 476 CE when Rome was sacked by the Germanic chieftain Odoacer.
These facts only scratch the surface of the rich history and cultural contributions of Ancient Rome. The Roman civilization continues to be a source of inspiration and study for historians, archaeologists, and enthusiasts around the world.