Characteristics Of The Roman Empire

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As we look at the Aztec, the Incas, and the Romans we learn that they are classified as Empires, but what are the characteristics of an Empire, what characteristics do they display that make them differ from other classifications such as city-states and territorial-states? In this essay we will give a brief definition of what constitutes an empire, we will differentiate between a city-state, territorial-state and an Empire, lastly we will describe each of the Empires mentioned above and compare and contrast them to each other. Although the definition of an Empire has not been concretely agreed on, it is concluded that they at least display some characteristics. An Empire will constitute of a state that will start to overtake and gain control …show more content…
The Romans started to gain power as “the Romans rebelled” (Smiley Lec 9) and they overtook the Etruscans who had taught them the alphabet and architecture. They then went on to conquer Carthage which gave them access to the center of trade. The Roman Empire allowed for the newly conquered states to maintain their traditions and laws and because of this “By the mid second century BCE, Rome was the undisputed power of the Mediterranean” (Smiley Lec 9). The Aztec Empires capital was located in Tenochtitlan which was surrounded by water as an island where the city was divided and there was a common temple area in the middle that was used to worship the gods and sacrifices were held. They were socially classified as of course a ruler, nobles under a ruler, and then the commoners and lastly slaves. The Aztecs similar to the Romans allowed for the rulers of the conquered city to continue their ruling “as long as they paid tribute, there was no problem” (Smiley Lec 10). They had sophisticated markets. They were required to pay tributes, “Every land owner paid tribute to the Aztec empire, primarily in the form of food stuffs” (Smiley Lec 10). They had a unique form of gardens called Chinampas which were a type of what seemed to be a floating garden. They were very important to the Aztecs capability of farming. The Aztec Empire differed from the Roman Empire as “The Aztec "empire" was more an organized system of tribute…that it was an empire as you saw with the Romans” (Smiley Lec 10). The Inca had a ruler which was called an “Inca” they were a “functional equivalent of an emperor, dictator, or pharaoh” (Smiley Lec 11). The Incas were unique in the sense that their ruler which was called an Inca was thought to have come from the gods. In order to maintain this linage they would marry one of their sisters. They had various

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