ROME FROM CITY-STATE TO AN EMPIRE

ROME FROM CITY-STATE TO AN EMPIRE

ROMEFROM CITY-STATE TO AN EMPIRE

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Afterthe fall of Greek civilization in the east the center of power wasshifted westwards to Rome, the Italian city-state which grew tobecome the most powerful empire in Europe and the world at large. Itdominated both the eastern and western civilization. Rome isconsidered by many historians as the successor of the HellenisticGreece, but on the contrary the two centers of power co-existed atthe same time, and it is often attributed as part of the Hellenisticentity (Lowrie,2003).

Romegrew to its dominance after several centuries, rising from being asmall Italian town mainly inhabited by the traditional upper classslowly growing into rare union of merit and aristocracy, lateradopting pseudo-democratic principles making up the Roman republic.This Roman republic was ruined by the civic difference which arose asa result of territorial expansion. Afterwards, there arose an empirebuild on thorough principles that became a model for the subsequentwestern powers ever since. In the duration of Roman dominance, whichlasted for about two and half centuries, the empire kept relativeprosperity and peace throughout major parts of Mediterranean basinand Europe.

Theempire was located about halfway the western coasts of the ItalianPeninsula, a region where river Tiber cross through the fertileplains before emptying into the sea (Lowrie,2003). At 1500 b.c.e the Indo-European was the early inhabitants tooccupy southern and central Italy, who developed farming villageswhich underperformed compared to that of the Near East and theMediterranean. In the year 800 b.c.e, the Etruscans, Phoenicians andthe Greeks came to Italy as colonist and later became rulers ofvarious sections of the peninsula (Lowrie, 2003). They immenselycontributed to the establishment of the Roman Empire.

Fromyear 750 to 509 b.c.e, Etruscan kings oversee a federation whichruled over early Rome. The archaeological records largely observedfrom pictures indicate that the early Romans mainly based their artforms, architecture and religious beliefs from these peoples. Basedon unreliable Roman sources, the Romans was against this monarchysystem of governance which they ultimately rebelled against it anddefeated the Etruscans (Lowrie,2003). Greek began to wield their influence fully silencing theirformer subjects. Greeks influenced the manners and attitudes of theRomans who acknowledged Greeks migrants as people with superiorculture. Greeks migrated from their homeland to southern Italy due toovercrowding, and thus they began transformation of Italy but theirprogress was slowed by fighting among themselves.

Onthe other hand, Phoenicians contributed immensely to theestablishment of the Carthage, a big trading center that becameindependent from Phoenicia, its homeland at around 700. The Greekcities of Sicily and southern Italy constantly engaged in fights withthe Carthaginians, utilizing their fights, the Romans took advantageof their mutual exhaustion to defeat the two groups.

Twinbrothers Remus and Romulus was the founders of Rome according to theancient Roman tradition. Historians belief that city-state of Romecame about as a result of voluntary unification of seven agrarianvillages at about 753 b.c.e. Until the year 509 b.c.e, the Etruscanruled the town, upon they were overturned that year and the cityemerge as republic state having no monarch, but were ruled by acombination of citizens of Rome and senate (Lowrie,2003). The senate was made up of the upper class, the commoners wascomprised of delegates to the general assembly.

References

Lowrie,M. (2003). Rome: City and Empire. The Classical World, 97(1), 57.doi:10.2307/4352825