Augustus Caesar: The Rise And Fall Of The Roman Empire

Good Essays
The Roman Empire was the most extensive political and social structure in western civilization. The Roman Empire started when Augustus Caesar became the first emperor of Rome. Although Julius Caesar is mistaken for being the first emperor it is wrong, he never held the title as emperor, he was more like a dictator. Augustus ruled the empire form 31 BCE until 14 CE before he died he said “I found Rome a city of clay but left it a city of marble”. After Augustus died Tiberius, Caligula, Claudius, and Nero were the emperors. These first five rulers of the empire are referred to as the Julio-Claudian Dynasty from the two family names they descended from. Although Caligula has become notorious for his depravity and apparent insanity, his early rule …show more content…
He also continued the building projects of his brother and improved the economy of the empire, he was assassinated in 96 CE. Nerva ruled next and was part of The Five Good Emperors along with Trajan, Hadrian, Antoninus Pius, and Marcus Aurelius. With their leadership the Roman empire was stronger, more stable, and expanded in size and scope. The Imperial Crisis was constant civil war and various military leaders fought for control of the empire. The crisis was social unrest, economic instability, and the dissolution of the empire which broke up into three different religions. The empire was reunited by Diocletian who broke into it to half in 285 CE, creating The Eastern Empire and The Western Empire. Since the cause of the crisis was lack of clarity in succussion, Diocletian said that successors must be chosen by individuals rule. Two of the successors were Maxentius and Constantine. After Diocletian's death Maxentius and Constantine plunged the empire into another civil war. IN 312 CE Constantine defeated Maxentius at the Battle of Milvian Bridge and became ruler of both Eastern and Western empires. He believed that Jesus Christ was responsible for his victory so he made a series of laws like the Edict of Milan which mandated religious tolerance throughout the empire and specifically the tolerance of the religion known as Christianity. He stabilized the empire, …show more content…
Constantius II died later and named his cousin Julian new emperor. Julian ruled for two years, and tried to return Rome to her former glory through a series of reforms he aimed at increasing efficiency in the government. Julian rejected Christianity and blamed the faith for the decline in the empire. Julian removed Christians from government positions. His death ended the Dynasty Constantine begun. From 376-382 CE Rome fought a lot of battles against invading Goths, known as today as Gothic wars. The roman emperor Valens was defeated, this was marked as the decline of the Western Roman Empire. The military could no longer safe guard the borders the government could not collect taxes in the provinces. The arrival of the Visigoths in the empire has also been another reason for the decline. The Eastern Roman Empire ended on September 4 476 CE, when emperor Romulus Augustus was deposed by the Germanic King Odoacer. The Eastern Roman Empire was the Byzantine Empire until 1453 CE. The Western Roman Empire would become reinvented later as The Holy Roman Empire, but that construct was far removed from the Roman Empire of antiquity and was an empire in name only. The inventions which we generated in the Roman Empire altered the lives of the ancient people and continue to be used in cultures around the world today. Roads and buildings, indoor plumbing, aqueducts, and fast-drying cement were even invented or improved by the Romans.

Related Documents

  • Decent Essays

    Analysis City Of God

    • 1849 Words
    • 8 Pages

    It was the rise of Christianity and the fall of paganism which caused much tension between the people in the state of Rome. Around 401-410 CE, this is where we see the Visigoths invade into Italy and in the end, under the rule of Alaric, sack Rome. This began the fall of Rome. In addition to that event, we then have the Vandals which sacked the North of Africa, which cut Rome off Roman grain supply. Following that tragic event, we then have the Huns attack around 440-454 CE, which the Huns threatened Rome, in which Rome paid them off but then attacked.…

    • 1849 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    His murder left Rome in a chaotic state, which was then resolved by a civil war between his right hand man and his heir. One of his legacies was the Julian calendar, which he invented to replace the old calendar. Another lasting mark he made was the month of July, which was named after…

    • 1326 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Still, the balance of power was impossible to maintain and soon began a series of civil wars that tore Rome apart, and in the end, it was Augustus who won and became Emperor of Rome in all but name. Augustus was a bright and ambitious leader, and learned much from the history of his father and to make sure not to repeat it, he gained power not only through one front but many by mollifying the senate and ruling classes by imposing laws that lessened the traditions of the roman republic and to win the people of Rome, he worked to improve over their grand city. He worked through the process of the senate rather than fighting against it like is great uncle had, so that he would he have the full support of his people. Also, unlike Caesar’s way of appointing military leaders, as senate members, Augustus appointed people who were government officials and governors to these powerful positions. Through the…

    • 602 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Prior to the division of the two Empire 's, there was one Republic where all matters were taken care of. The Empire continued to flourish equally, but that all changed when the senate became too damaged. Diocletian, who was emperor at the time, made a decision to fix this conflict when signs of internal and external forces risen, compelling him to break the two sides apart. Emperor Theodosius died, about sixty years after the founding of Constantinople, leaving his two sons to inherit the two empires. Arcadius, the eldest son, took Constantinople for his capital and ruled over the Eastern Empire while Honorius, who was just a child of eleven years old, became the ruler of the Western Empire, with Rome as his capital.1 The expression, “united we stand, divided we fall” especially applied…

    • 788 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    In 313 AD, Constantine and Licinius issued the famous Edict of Milan. This was crucial for religions because it created a universal toleration by which Christians and others were permitted to worship freely. Christians were given back land that was confiscated and were allowed to build churches. Walson in “Constatine I” writes that emperor Constantine, “While he tolerated certain pagan religious practices, pagan sacrifices were forbidden, temple treasures seized, gladiatorial contests ended, crucifixions were abolished, and laws were enacted against sexual immorality and ritual prostitution” (1). Though Constantine proclaimed himself as the ruler of all Romans, it was evident that there was favoritism towards Christianity, which could be seen through the restrictions that were implemented on pagan practices.…

    • 1041 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    In the late 4th century, Christianity was made the official state religion of the Empire by order of Constantine the Great (“The Fall of the Roman Empire”). This created serious problems because the Monotheistic Christian religion clashed with the traditional polytheistic religion. Besides loosing many of their old ways, traditions, and beliefs, the people also lost their beloved emperor who was once believed to be a God (Evans). No longer led by an immortal, or so they believed, another crucial dimension of Rome’s infrastructure, societal belief, joined the already decaying political, economic, and military institutions. George Santayana said “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it” (“The Fall of the Roman Empire”).…

    • 920 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    “The last emperor of each the West and East was Theodosius.” They lost all loyalty of Rome or maybe the thought of Rome. “The fate of Western Rome was partly sealed within the late third century, once the Emperor Diocletian divided the Empire into 2 halves—the Western Roman Empire sitting within the town of Milano, and also the jap Empire in Byzantium, later referred to as metropolis. The division created the empire additional simply manageable within the short term, however over time the 2 halves drifted apart. East and West did not adequately work along to combat outside threats, and also the 2 typically squabbled over resources and military aid. Because the gulf widened, the for the most part Greek-speaking Jap Empire grew in wealth whereas the Latin-speaking West descended into economic condition.…

    • 1853 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    There were ones like Constantanius who elected his cousin as co-emperor, but when he died the cousin, Julian, became the sole emperor. Julian began to promote pagan beliefs throughout the empire (Burgan 51). This attempt of forcing them to convert took away a bit to the liking of it. Then, in 476, Romulus Augustulus, who was one of the last Roman rulers, was overthrown by the Germanic leader Odoacer (The Fall). One of the last rulers, Justinian, kept fighting for land and trying to make it better, but these wars weakened the empire more than it already had been (Burgan 60).…

    • 1028 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    Historians have said that some of the reason it fell was from military failures, crippling taxation, natural disasters, and climate change. The Roman Empire did not complete fall in 476 A.D. The eastern half continued for another thousand years as the Byzantine Empire. One of the biggest theories why the empire fell part was from the attacks of the Barbarian tribes. The Romans have fought with Germanic tribes for centuries.…

    • 1395 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Decent Essays
  • Decent Essays

    He became the Governor of Southern Gaul. He spent his time as governor waging war and conquering territory. While he was away, Crassus died in battle and Pompey was elected single Consul. Pompey and the Senate tried to strip Caesar of his power by exiling him from Rome. If Caesar were to return, he would be prosecuted for corrupt consuling and excessive use of power.…

    • 1112 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Decent Essays