Rome for Dummies

Rome for Dummies

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  • The Romans invented many architectural innovations that continue to influence us today. Some of these include the arch, aqueducts, and the amphitheater. They also developed the traditional Doric column used by the Greeks into the Tuscan column. Rome was greatly influenced by Greek architecture. They also created public bath buildings that were open to every class. 
  • Rome was ruled by the Roman Republic. This was made up of both the upper and lower class. The Senate elected two consuls to lead. The early Republic did not give the lower class or plebeians, much say. Gradually, they gained more power and were able to hold the position of consul. The Romans also followed the Twelve Tables- the first Roman laws put into writing. 
  • Daily life in Rome started with a light breakfast of bread, water, or occasionally a wheat pancake bought on the way to work. Men typically worked as bakers, builders, or merchants. Women took care of the house with their daughters. However, sometimes the girls were aloud to attend school with their brothers. The Romans would go to he public baths after work and school. This was where they also socialized. After this, they would return home for supper before doing other recreational activities. Some of these included attending gladiator fights or chariot races, music, art, reading, and more. 
  • When Christianity first started, Christians were hunted down as criminals. Attending a meeting or service was a crime punishable by death. However, numbers grew rapidly because of the idea of Heaven and the fact that everyone was considered equal. Many converts were poor, though many were rich. In 313 CE, Emperor Constantine converted to Christianity and made it legal. It became the dominant religion in a very short period of time. Soon after that, you had to be Christian to be a citizen in Rome. 
  • Rome fell for many reasons. Some of these include corrupt politicians and rulers, civil wars within the empire, attacks from Barbaric tribes, the army was no longer a dominant force, Rome became so big that it was hard to govern, and severe inflation. The decline started in 200 AD and ended in 476 AD when the great empire finally fell. 
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