Meanwhile, popes and other church leaders took an increased role in political affairs, further complicating governance. The Romans weathered a Germanic uprising in the late fourth century, but in 410 the Visigoth King Alaric successfully sacked the city of Rome. The Empire spent the next several decades under constant threat before “the Eternal City” was raided again in 455, this time by the Vandals. But during the decline, the makeup of the once mighty legions began to change. These decrees ended centuries of persecution, but they may have also eroded the traditional Roman values system. Roman revolution. The Edict of Milan legalized Christianity in 313, and it later became the state religion in 380. The Roman Republic engaged in series of wars that expanded the republic's territory and brought it large sums of money. The main cause of the fall of the Roman Empire is still a topic of debate among historians, maybe because it is a symbol of what we fear about our own civilization. There are many different theories about why a superpower that ruled for 500 years crumbled and fell, but most scholars degree that it wasn’t one event, but a series of factors that caused a steady decline. At the same time, the empire was rocked by a labor deficit. Rome eventually fell primarily because of the corruption in politics, the weakening army, and numerous barbarian attacks. In ‘The History of Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire’, Edward Gibbon had a controversial theory. Comparative Look At The Roman Empire And Han Dynasty Economies Essay 1409 Words | 6 Pages. Although the land proposal passed, Gracchus made several enemies in the process, and they eventually assassinated him. These increases in the treasury led to increased competition for public office and increased cases of bribery throughout the public as citizens tried to gain access to the money. In brutalizing the Goths, the Romans created a dangerous enemy within their own borders. Lead poisoning is often dismissed as a major cause for the decline of Rome, but the theory does have some merit. When the Republic stopped engaging in as many wars in 146 B.C., revenue also slowed, leaving little to no money available to support the citizens. HISTORY reviews and updates its content regularly to ensure it is complete and accurate. This resulted in a shift in the rural, agricultural regions. It was a perfect storm for an empire to be engulfed by. Gracchus developed a plan that gave public land to poor citizens. Many scholars point to a law proposed by Tiberius Sempronius Gracchus in 156 B.C. He made Maximian his co-emperor sometime in 285 AD with Empire split into east and west; Nicomedia was the original capital although it was changed to Constantinople […] Rome had tangled with Germanic tribes for centuries, but by the 300s “barbarian” groups like the Goths had encroached beyond the Empire’s borders. It expanded through conquest and colonization and became a major power of the ancient world. Christianity displaced the polytheistic Roman religion, which viewed the emperor as having a divine status, and also shifted focus away from the glory of the state and onto a sole deity. Less than 20 years later, the Roman Republic officially ended and transitioned into the Roman Empire. To avoid the draft, the men abandoned their land, which left them without a means to make money. The shocked Romans negotiated a flimsy peace with the barbarians, but the truce unraveled in 410, when the Goth King Alaric moved west and sacked Rome. Land of Maps 1 – Internal Strife. ), The Secret Science of Solving Crossword Puzzles, Racist Phrases to Remove From Your Mental Lexicon. These increases in the treasury led to increased competition for public office and increased cases of bribery throughout the public as citizens tried to gain access to the money. With the Western Empire weakened, Germanic tribes like the Vandals and the Saxons were able to surge across its borders and occupy Britain, Spain and North Africa. This paper argues upon the hypothesis that the Roman Republic fell because had become weak and its political infrastructure had become frail.There have been hindsight based speculations that the Roman Republic fell because the Roman Republic had reached a … For most of its history, Rome’s military was the envy of the ancient world. Rome reached its zenith in the 2nd century, then fortunes slowly declined (with many revivals and restorations along the way). Most importantly, the strength of the Eastern Empire served to divert Barbarian invasions to the West. A few weeks after declaring himself dictator, a group of men conspired to assassinate Caesar and end his control. All Rights Reserved. The Romans used lead in a variety of ways, many involving food and water. MAIN REASON. Emperors like Constantine ensured that the city of Constantinople was fortified and well guarded, but Italy and the city of Rome—which only had symbolic value for many in the East—were left vulnerable. According to the historian Ammianus Marcellinus, Roman officials even forced the starving Goths to trade their children into slavery in exchange for dog meat.