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Roman Provinces and Empire. Provinces. The Roman Province. Governed by a Roman Governor (often a former senior magistrate, like a consul or praetor) The governor had almost unchecked power, as an appeal to his decisions to Rome was difficult and rare.

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the roman province
The Roman Province
  • Governed by a Roman Governor (often a former senior magistrate, like a consul or praetor)
  • The governor had almost unchecked power, as an appeal to his decisions to Rome was difficult and rare.
  • The governor had command of the army, oversaw taxation, administered justice, and was the only one who could impose the death penalty
  • Taxes were typically auctioned to private collection groups of companies.
  • The governor could and would deal with any uprising or outside enemy using the army
  • Even when Rome was a republic, the administration of the provinces was not representative, but rather that of subjects
the pax romana
The PaxRomana
  • Roman Rule brought an end to war in many lands with a very violent history and countless wars (e.g. Greece).
  • Now everyone could get on with their lives, pay their taxes and prosper in the civilized world of the Romans.
  • Pompey in the 1st c BC cleared the Mediterranean from piracy, and thereafter the seas were relatively safe and open to commerce and trading.
  • In this respect Roman rule brought economic prosperity for all
  • The exchange of ideas, goods, and knowledge which the Roman Rule facilitated allowed for progress and enhanced skills.
who profited
Who profited
  • Rome certainly did as affluent provinces contributed plenty of tax.
  • Although the emperors (at least the good ones) tried to curb corruption among magistrates and civil servants, governors certainly profited too.
  • But the provinces profited also, because almost universally they had more income, and they were paying tax in an orderly and relatively fair manner
  • The census of Augustus in year 0 (mentioned in the story of the birth of Christ) was intended to distribute the burden of taxation more fairly.
  • In the provinces business and productivity flourished and resulted in a healthier economy.
the decline
The decline
  • Things started going wrong from the 3rd c.
  • Provinces were increasingly harassed and plundered by invaders.
  • As the borders of the empire begin to crumble, so does productivity and the trades.
  • Near the end of the Roman period entire towns are abandoned (e.g. Sparta)
  • Western Europe gradually will slip into Feudalism, while North Africa and eventually the entire east coast of the Mediterranean (from Syria to Egypt) will fall to the Arabs.