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Decline of the Roman Empire

The Fall of Rome was due to split by communal and patriarchal forces which led to series of internal and external wars and thus the decline of the Roman Empire leading to slavery. The spread of Christianity was a rescue route for the people who were suppressed and dominated by higher class.
As per the Myth, Rome was founded during BC 753 by Romulus a son of Mars and first king of Rome, deified as Quirinus: he and his twin brother Remus, left as infants to die in the banks of Tiber, are suckled by a she-wolf. There are sculptures in Rome depicting this. The history of the rise and fall of the Roman Empire starts from the Hellenic era till the end of monarchy through civil wars.

Rome and the Roman Empire
Rome, a small town in the Tiber river bank inherited by Indo-European Hellens, Latins and Etruscans1 later became a big geographical empire and center of most classical enriched civilization of the world. The most potential and brave king like Great King Alexander of Macedonia and many philosophers, historians and eminent scientists the world has ever seen, were lived during this era and contributed cultural and economic progress to the humanity. The agriculture and industry in Rome were vast during this era. After the death of Great Alexander, his Commandos started splitting the country for their shares which continued till BC 30.

During BC 750 Rome became an urban nation under an Etruscan King defeating the Latins. On BC 500, Latins repulsed and drove out Etruscans thereby ending their kingdom.

Due to constant conquer and evasion by neighboring kingdom, Rome grew with constant wars and increasing brigade of soldiers. They fought ruthlessly with adjacent enemies like Greece, Carthage, and Finish etc. They worked hard in the farms as also in the war field. Their motto was to enlarge the geographical area for settlement to cope up with the increasing population. Later their generation became greedy and imperialists.

Fall of the Roman Empire
As per available historical information the fall of Roman Kingdom and arousal of a Republic is attributed by suicide of a high-born woman viz. Lucratia who was molested by Tarkius, a Roman Emperor's son. Her supporters and husband Lucius T Collatinus2 revolted against the kingdom and after a civil agitation the Tarkians left Rome. However, it is said that people hated Etruscan rule and agitated against them. Hence at AD 510, Rome entered into a Republican Rule by ending the kingdom. The Republican structure existed about 500 years approx.

The Roman Republic
The Roman Republic was constituted by two sections viz. Senate and Commissa Curiata. Senate was represented by head of high community known as Patricians and Commissa Curiata was represented by ordinary community known as Plebeians. Due to monarchy and political power of Patricians they became rich and nourished exploiting Plebeians who became the down trodden sufferers and slaves who continued to live as laborers. They were denied the share of their land occupied through wars and kept aloof from law enactments.

Hence Plebeians started uniting and resorted to civil disobedience and boycott of their work. They migrated to a hilly terrain and declared formation of independent nation for them. The Patricians succumbed to their demands and granted more rights to them which resulted in historical administrative reforms viz. Commissa Patricia, Twelve Index Laws, Valerian Laws, and Eleusinian Laws etc. Through these laws, social and economical equality were restored in Rome.

Due to the struggle and boycott of Plebeians from the Senate, they got their rights in enactment of law abiding Patricians also known as Lex Hortense. This established equality before laws to all citizens. For this victory, Plebeians had to resort five secessions from the Senate during the five decades i.e. from BC 494 to 28. After this Rome became a Democratic Republic with Executive, Assembly and Senate.

The members of Senate were highly influential and powerful. They had the supreme right for tabling the law, amendment, approval although they were an advisory assembly. They decided the tax, foreign, home and defense policies. In fact, the rule was a monopoly of elite community including Patricians and some Plebeians.

Enemies
Rome faced a disaster of wars from German Gals, and Sanities from South East Italian Province. But they defeated and conquered all urban nations including the commercial city of Tarentum with the help of Carthage. Later, Carthage3 emerged as the biggest enemy for Rome and both the nations fought terrifically three wars viz. 'Punic Wars' for expanding their trade and regime in Mediterranean area. Hannibal the great warrior of Carthage conquered the tedious Alps Mountains and attacked Rome. But the naval artillery of Rome retaliated and defeated Carthage Army. Their Army Chief Cornelius set sail for Africa to defeat Carthage but he later returned their land to them.

But the succeeding emperors of Rome (Marcus Porcious Keto) became jealous on the growth of Carthage and forced them to resettle 10 miles away from their land. This was not acceptable to Carthage which led to the last Punic War (third). Rome spontaneously attacked them and went on rampage of mass destruction of that nation. Moreover, Rome attacked kingdoms of Egypt, Syria, Macedonia, Trans Alpine Gall (today France) and attached them to the Roman Empire. Thus the entire Mediterranean region became a Roman Lake under their captivation.

The fall of the Roman Empire started simultaneously with the expansion. The administration could not supervise the mass provinces under them. There was no representation in the Senate from these far away provinces. So the Governors became selfish, lavish, sybaritic and corrupt. The citizens' rights in Italy were retrenched for the celestial rule in Rome. The Lords and Common people engaged in altercation and fight.

There was a civil rage during BC 73 under the leadership of a Slave Spartacus. As a result the Consuls handed over their rule to Military Bosses which led to total anarchy. Army became supreme power and a lucrative profession. Although good Military Rulers like Gracus Brothers were kind enough to return the right of land to common people and their voting rights, they were murdered by Senate members.

There was a Military Consul viz. Lucius Corneilius Sulla who used Roman Army against Rome itself. He returned the rights of Senate. He contributed for the decline of Rome by shedding blood and conquering the cities in Rome and then went to Greece for a war with Greek Emperor Miti Datus. When he returned his successor prevented him from entering Rome. This again enraged a war which sacrificed 50000 lives. During the rest of his regime he stopped elections to Consul. Thus Sulla dug the grave for Roman Republic.

Caesar
The renowned Julius Caesar along with Pompeii and Crasus took the rule of Rome. (They were known as 'Triumvirate'). Caesar was reputed for statesmanship and his reforms in the Government. But while Caesar was out for Military mission to Gall, Pompeii conspired with Senate against him. Later Caesar was murdered by his traitor friend Brutus. Afraid of his counter part, Pompeii was also took refuge at Greece but were murdered by some unknown.

After Caesar, Anthony continued the triangular rule along with Octavian and Lepidus (second triumvirate). Anthony was mesmerized with Egyptian beauty Cleopatra. He made her Egyptian Queen and spent most of the time there. He was later defeated by his counter part at Actium where ended his life out of despair. Thus Octavian, known as Augusts Caesar became the first emperor of Rome.

Chronologically from what is described above, it is seen that Rome was split by communal and patriarchal forces which led to series of internal and external wars and thus the decline and fall of the Empire. This led to slavery. The spread of Christianity was a salvation route for the people who were suppressed and dominated by higher class.
By Jayashree Pakhare
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