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Decline and Fall of Rome

Decline and Fall of Rome

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Decline and Fall of Rome

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  1. Decline and Fall of Rome

  2. The last two good emperors • Diocletian • Absolute ruler, limited personal freedom • Claimed descent from the gods • Persecuted Christians • Divided empire • Got too big • Easier to govern

  3. Constantine • Reunited the empire • Moved the capitol to Constantinople • Power shift: west → east • Christianity • Legalized the Christian church and ended persecution – Edict of Milan

  4. Political Causes • Political office seen as burden • Bad emperors • Military interference in gov’t • Civil war • Division of Empire • Moved capital to Byzantium

  5. Social Causes • Decline in interest in public affairs • Low confidence in gov’t • Disloyalty • Corruption • Gap between rich and poor

  6. Economic Causes • Poor harvests • Disruption of trade • Lack of war plunder • Gold and silver drain • Inflation • High taxes • Gap between rich and poor

  7. Military Causes • Threat from northern tribes • Low funds for defense • Recruiting non-Roman citizens • Lack of patriotism and loyalty amongst troops

  8. Immediate Causes • Military pressure from Huns • Invasion by Germans and Huns • Sack of Rome • Conquest by invaders

  9. Legacy of Rome • Alphabet and Language • Italian, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Romanian (Romance languages) • Roman Numerals • Calendar • Developed by Julius Caesar • July and August • Saturday

  10. Engineering and Architecture • Aqueducts • Carried water into the cities from long distances • Used the arch • Architecture • -columns • -dome • -concrete

  11. Law • Twelve Tables – applied to everyone • Used witnesses, cross X, evidence • Lawyers • Civil and criminal