Nick Conway18.12.17Ms. MuirWH 1.8Word Count: ___Fall of Rome EssayLooking back on ancient Rome, many agree that Rome was one of the most powerful empires to date. The fall of Rome was tragic, as Rome was seen as unstoppable and one of the finest built empires at that time. In the late fourth century, the Western Roman Empire sunk after a nearly 500-year run as one of the significant empires to happen. Rome was not always a strong empire, as they had to work their way to the top. Late in the third century, Rome was split into two halves, East and West. The Eastern Empire was based out of Byzantium, later known as Constantinople, and the Western Empire was based in the city of Milan. The initial plan for splitting the empires into two halves was to make the empires more easily governable, but as time went on the two empires drifted apart. The two empires failed to work together as one team and both went their separate ways. By doing this, each half thrives and struggled in different areas, but the East Empire had the last laugh as they grew in wealth, while the Western Empire fell into an economic crisis. Rome dramatically declined from being one of the most powerful empires due to many contributing factors and the desire from other empires to overtake Rome’s power.A significant factor in the fall of Western Rome was due to their failing economy. Government started raising taxes on everything, as some of this was due to the constant flow of Romanians into the Roman empire. Due to this, the armies became much bigger and to pay all the soldiers, Rome implemented high taxes on people that most could not afford.Rome had become an undesirable place to live because they could not make their people happy. This was also due to Rome depending more on slave labour over time, which lead to more rebellions. As well, Romans had reached the limit of expansions and stopped conquering new lands, which meant they lacked new scores of silver and gold. In result of this, the government produced more coins with less silver, starting a massive inflation. Rome was still active, as cash and goods were still flowing through Rome, though without citizens the city was declining.  Many people stopped using coins and started to barter instead.  In the end, salaries had to be paid in food and clothing and vegetable and fruits were used to pay taxes.Rome’s decline was not solely due to their poor economy and government, as their poor military and the losses by the military from outside forces had an impact on the decline as well. The problems from the economy reflected back on the military, as it suffered problems based from the economy. These issues included lower health throughout the military, fitness of the military, and the quality of equipment they were given. The Roman armour had to be mass produced, but with the economy failing, the armor had to be made less effective and significantly weaker. As result of the less effective armour, the Romans were not as successful in battle, and the standards for the once great Roman army started to lower. The Romans had initially started with the plan of having the Roman army be made up of Roman citizens of over 17, though after the decline of the economy, things changed. The Roman army was allowing non-Roman citizens into their army, which made the army less of an honour for its nation. Rome struggled to gather resources and troops to defend its frontiers from local and outside attacks.  The government did not have much control over the army and corruption was rampant in the army as the army generals dominated the emperorship. The military transformed into a mercenary army, and the mercenaries had no loyalty to Rome. Unfortunately, by the 300’s, the Romans were being attacked by Barbarian groups such as the Goths as they surpassed the Empire’s borders. Over time, the Roman military dealt with these threats well, until A.D. 410 when the Visigoth King Alaric successfully raided the city of Rome. The rise of Christianity throughout Rome also had a significant role to play in the fall of the Roman Empire.  In 313 A.D. Roman emperor Constantine the Great declared tolerance for Christianity. Christianity undermined the Roman states religious traditions. Romans had believed that their emperor was a god but the Christians only believed in one god and it was not the emperor. This weakened the power and authority of the emperor. Christianity also made many Romans pacifists, which made it increasingly difficult to protect Rome from barbarian attackers. Political corruption was another major problem in Rome. Romans never created a system to select new emperors. Originally the old emperor, the Senate, the Praetorian Guard and the army would debate and select a new emperor. Eventually, the Praetorian Guard had complete control over choosing the new emperor. Generals and politicians gave money to the Praetorian Guard, so that he would assassinate the emperor in office and proclaim the person giving the most money as emperor. In 186 A.D. the army strangled the new emperor, and the practice began of selling the throne to the highest bidder. In the next 100 years, Rome had 37 emperors. Of those emperors, 25 were assassinated and this further added to weaken Rome.Finally, in 476 A.D., the last Roman Emperor, Rumulus, was overthrown and the first Barbarian, Odoacer, came to rule in Rome. Some historians believe it was Christianity that caused the fall of Rome while others believe the split of Rome into the Eastern and Western empires governed by separate emperors was the cause. There were many factors, such as economic decline, political corruption, a weakened and unloyal military and barbarians invasions that all contributed to the fall of the great Roman Empire.  Citations: Pillalamarri, Akhilesh, Samuel Rines, Doug Bandow, and Robert E. Kelly. “The 5 Most Powerful Empires in History.” The National Interest. Accessed December 17, 2017., Evan. “8 Reasons Why Rome Fell.” January 14, 2014. Accessed December 17, 2017.”Crisis of the Third Century.” Wikipedia. December 13, 2017. Accessed December 17, 2017.”Fall of the Roman Empire.” > Fall of the Roman Empire, decline of ancient Rome. Accessed December 17, 2017., N.S. “How Did Taxes Lead to the Fall of Rome?” ThoughtCo. Accessed December 17, 2017., Dr Peter. “History – Ancient History in depth: The Fall of Rome.” BBC. February 17, 2011. Accessed December 17, 2017., KS2. “What was life like in the Roman army?” BBC Bitesize. Accessed December 17, 2017.”Political Reasons for the Fall of the Roman Empire.” March 09, 2017. Accessed December 17, 2017.”The Fall of the Roman Empire.” Accessed December 17, 2017. of RomeNick Conway18.12.17Ms. MuirWH 1.8____ words


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