Ancient rome the rise of christianity 509 bce 476 ce
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Ancient Rome & the Rise of Christianity (509 BCE – 476 CE). Mr. Young Kennedy Charter Public School. Ancient Greek Events 490-479 BC: Persian Wars 460 BC: Age of Pericles in Athens 431 BC: Peloponnesian Wars 331 BC: Alexander the Great conquers Persian Empire: Hellenistic Age

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Ancient Rome & the Rise of Christianity (509 BCE – 476 CE)

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Ancient rome the rise of christianity 509 bce 476 ce

Ancient Rome & the Rise of Christianity (509 BCE – 476 CE)

Mr. Young

Kennedy Charter Public School

Parallel events greece vs rome

Ancient Greek Events

490-479 BC: Persian Wars

460 BC: Age of Pericles in Athens

431 BC: Peloponnesian Wars

331 BC: Alexander the Great conquers Persian Empire: Hellenistic Age

133 BC: end of Greek dominance in Med. world

Ancient Rome Events

509 BC: Rome sets up a Republic

450 BC: 12 Tables of Law

270 BC: Rome controls most of Italian peninsula

264-146 BC: Punic Wars vs. Carthage

133 BC: Roman power extends from Spain to Egypt

Parallel Events (Greece vs. Rome)

Rome as a kingdom first 200 years

Rome as a Kingdom – First 200 Years

  • Geography and People of Italy

  • Rome began as a small city-state located in the center of the Italian peninsula near 7 hills.

  • Apennine mountains run the length of Italy

  • Less rugged than Greek mountains

  • Italy much easier to unify --- no isolated city-states

  • Most Romans settled in the west

  • Fertile plains in the north below the Alps

The 7 hills

The 7 Hills

Early roman people

Early Roman People

  • Latins: ancestors of the Romans

  • Herders and farmers: settled along the Tiber River along the 7 hills

  • Etruscans: ruled central and northern Italy

  • Came from Asia Minor(Eastern Mediterranean)

  • Called themselves Tyrrhenians in honor of their king

  • Romans borrowed Etruscan alphabet, arch and worshipped similar gods/goddesses

  • Greeks: settled in southern Italy/Sicily

Etruscan origins

Etruscan Origins

  • 1828 AD: a plowman and his oxen crashed through a buried stone roof of a tomb

  • Knowledge of the Etruscan way of life comes from their death

  • Kept the ashes of their dead in urns

  • Loved games: chariot races, wrestling, boxing, discus, dice, handball, & knucklebones

Rome as a republic 500 years

Rome as a Republic – 500 Years

  • Romans drove out Etruscan rulers around 509 BC

  • Set up a Republic (govt. of the people)

  • Senate: most powerful governing body made up of 300 patricians (landholding upper class): served for life

Roman senate

Roman Senate

  • 2 consuls elected from the patrician class

  • Job was to consult with the Senate, supervise business of the govt. and command the armies

  • Consuls served 1 year term

  • In times of war: Senate chose a dictator to rule for 6 months

Plebeians demand equality

Plebeians Demand Equality

  • Plebeians (commoners): farmers, merchants, artisans, traders

  • Made efforts to gain power

  • 450 BC: 12 Tables of Law set up in the Forum --- made it possible for plebeians to appeal decision of a judge

  • Later gained right to elect tribunes (10) to protect their interests

  • Tribunes could veto (block) laws that weren’t in the interest of the common people

Roman society

Family: basic unit of society

Male head of household (usually father) had absolute power

Enforced discipline

Demanded respect

Women: played larger role than Greek women

Could run businesses, attend baths, theater and public entertainment – supported arts and public festivals

Most worked at home, however!

Roman Society



  • Girls and boys learned to read and write

  • Wealthy Romans hired private tutors (from Greece) to supervise education of children

  • Rhetoric was important subject for boys who wanted to pursue political success



  • Gods/goddesses resembled Greek and Etruscan deities

  • Statues and temples built throughout Rome

  • Festivals honored the deities



Roman expansion

Roman Expansion

  • During the Roman Republic period, Rome expanded.

  • First Punic War:- Began in 264 BCE- Fought against Carthage – powerful city in North Africa – challenged Roman trade superiority in the Mediterranean- After 23 years of war, Rome is victorious.

Roman expansion continued

Roman Expansion (continued)

  • Second Punic War:- Began in 218 BCE- Fought for similar reasons (plus revenge)- Carthage was led by greatest general of the age, Hannibal, whose army was large including foot & horse soldiers, and ELEPHANTS!- Hannibal attacked the Roman countryside and the Romans countered by attacking Carthage – led by brilliant Roman General Scipio- Scipio defeated Hannibal and Rome again was victorious.

Hannibal crossing the alps

Hannibal crossing the Alps

Roman expansion around 100 bce

Roman Expansion around 100 BCE

Rome as an empire 500 years

Rome as an Empire – 500 Years

  • It became difficult to manage all the conquered territories and the Republic-style government weakened.

  • Consul’s became power hungry and changed the power system to dictatorships:- Gaius Marius- Lucius Cornelius Sulla

Julius caesar

Julius Caesar

Nephew of Sulla

Was a General who rose in popularity

Joined the “Triumvirate” which was rule by three

Elected Consul in 59 BCE

Declared himself “Dictator for life” in 46 BCE

Was brutally murdered in a conspiracy led by his best friend, Brutus, on March 15

“Beware the Ides of March”

Caesar augustus

Caesar Augustus

  • Several dictator-like rulers followed:- Octavian or Caesar Augustus – “the revered one”- Pax Romana – Roman Peace – peaceful era under Augustus

Rise of christianity

Rise of Christianity

  • Several leaders followed Augustus – Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius, Nero, Vespasian.

  • Roman expansion during this time included Israel and the Jewish people.

  • Came into contact with a young carpenter named Jesus Christ

  • His followers were called Christians

  • Many Romans converted to his monotheistic belief system

  • After initially persecuting Christians (Nero), Theodosius officially made Christianity the religion of Rome in 312 CE

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