Chapter 8 The Rise of Ancient Rome Section 2 The Roman Empire
Ruling An Empire At it’s height the Roman Empire controlled all lands that surrounded the Mediterranean Sea. With pride the Romans called the Mediterranean “Mare Nostrum,” which means “our sea.”
The Power of Augustus Augustus 1st Emperor of Rome Augustus often ignored the senate, but he was careful not to act like a king. In return, Romans gave him as much power as he wanted.
Governing Conquered Peoples The empire was divided into provinces, or an area of an empire ruled by a governor. The Romans did not force their culture on conquered peoples. They wanted peaceful provinces that would provide raw materials. They wanted people to provide a market for Roman goods and pay taxes. The empire was just too big to be ruled by one man.
The Five “Good Emperors” After Augustus died, there were good, bad, and terrible emperors. In A.D. 96, Rome entered the age of the five “good emperors.” The greatest of them may have been Hadrian. He issued a code of laws, reorganized the army, and encouraged learning. The last of the good emperors was Marcus Aurelius. His son, Commodus, was a terrible leader who brought an end to Rome’s age of peace.
The Empire In Decline Although there were some “good” emperors, under Emperors like Commodus, Rome began to decline due to bad government, economic problems, and foreign invaders.
The Greek Influence on Rome The Romans admired many of the achievements that the Greeks had made. Many Romans visited Greece to study Greek art, architecture, and ideas about government The Greek Parthenon The Roman Pantheon
Roman Religion Like the Greeks, the Romans practiced polytheism. Many Roman gods and goddesses had Greek counterparts.
Building On Ideas The Greeks and the Romans both valued learning, but in different ways. The Greeks were interested in ideas and the Romans were interested in using their studies to build things. Under the Romans, architecture and engineering blossomed
Architecture & Technology Early Roman art and architecture copied the Etruscans. Then the Romans copied Greek sculpture and architecture. Later, they developed their own style.
The Roman Style Roman buildings were heavier and stronger than those of the Greeks. The Romans used arches to build larger structures and arched ceilings to create large open spaces inside. Earlier, most large buildings were built of bricks covered with thin slabs of white marble. The Romans developed concrete. It helped them build taller buildings.
The Colosseum The Colosseum may have been the greatest Roman building. It was a giant arena that held 50,000 spectators. The floor could be flooded for mock naval battles.
Roads & Aqueducts Roman engineers built roads throughout the empire. The Romans also built aqueducts, structures that carried water,that were often many miles long. A channel along the top carried water from the countryside to the cities.
Roman Law Roman law was passed down to other cultures, including our own. Roman law spread throughout the empire. The ruler Justinian created a famous code of justice. It includes these laws • “No one suffers a penalty for what he thinks. • No one may be forcibly removed from his own house. • The burden of proof is upon the person who accuses.”
Let’s Review • How did the Romans govern the people they conquered? • Who was the first emperor of Rome? • How did the Romans borrow ideas from the Greeks? • Describe Roman Law