Ancient Rome 101 | National Geographic

– [Narrator] The story of ancient Rome is a story of evolution, of
how a civilization’s ability to adapt and dominate
can lead to its survival for over 1,000 years. Rome began as a small village on central Italy’s Tiber River. In the coming centuries,
it grew into an empire that stretched from the north Atlantic all the way to the Persian Gulf. During this transformation,
Rome displayed a political, military, and cultural
prowess that enabled it to become a super power and helped shape what would become known
as western civilization. The lifespan of ancient
Rome can be divided into three major periods, the regal, the republican, and the imperial. During the regal period,
Rome was monarchical and ruled by a succession
of about seven kings. Rome’s first king, according to legend, was a man named Romulus. He and his twin brother Remus are said to have founded Rome in 753 B.C. In 509 B.C., Rome adopted a
republican system of governance in which the state was primarily ruled by two annually representatives
called praetors, who were later called consuls. One of them become a famous general and dictator, Julius Caesar. The imperial period followed. It was characterized by the
rise of the Roman Empire and notorious leaders such as Octavian, Rome’s first emperor, who
issued in an era of peace, and Nero, who, some scholars believe, was Rome’s cruelest emperor. Rome’s focus and pride in its military was vital to the civilization’s growth, and this ethos was evident
as early as the regal period when Rome was only a small village. Still, Rome slowly conquered and annexed neighboring peoples. This slow and steady
expansion eventually lead to the Romans’ domination
of the Italian peninsula and the entire Mediterranean Sea, where they conquered the Greeks, Egyptians, and Carthaginians. Military conquests would later help Rome conquer lands as far
away as Britain and Iraq. This massive scale and growing populous necessitated advancements
in Roman engineering. Aqueducts were constructed,
which increased the public’s access to water,
helped improve public health, and paved the way for
Rome’s famed bath houses. A 50,000 mile long road
system was built as well. While made originally for the military, it facilitated the movement of people and ideas throughout the empire. This transmission of ideas
and increased contact with diverse cultures also enabled other aspects of Roman culture to evolve. A key to Rome’s success and longevity was the empire’s inclusion of cultures from the lands they conquered. From the nearby land of Latium, Rome acquired the Latin language, which became the empire’s
official language and the ancestor to
Europe’s Romance languages. Romans also adopted cultural aspects from the ancient state of Etruria, including their religion, alphabet, and the spectacle of gladiator combat. However, no other civilization
influenced the Romans as much as the ancient Greeks. Their influence is probably most apparent in Rome’s art and architecture. Upper class Romans commissioned
paintings and sculptures to imitate Greek art. Greek architectural
styles, such as columns, were implemented in Roman structures such as the Pantheon and Colosseum. One cultural shift in
particular that resonated throughout the empire was
the rise of Christianity. Originating in the Middle East, the religion found a strong
advocate in Constantine I, the first Roman emperor to
convert to Christianity. He enabled Rome’s transition
into a Christian state and encouraged the religion
to spread across Europe. By the fourth century, after a lifespan of over a millennium, the
Roman Empire declined. Factors including political corruption, economic crises, and class conflict led to the empire’s decay from within while invasions and other military threats caused it to break down from outside. Rome’s ability to
incorporate diverse cultures, dominate rivals, and
adapt political systems to the needs of its people
are all lessons to be learned for time eternal.

100 thoughts on “Ancient Rome 101 | National Geographic”

  1. A key to Rome's success and longevity was its inclusion of cultures from the lands that it conquered. What lessons did you take away from this informational video about Rome?

  2. by the way one of the languages heavely based on latin include English, why you dont include it in the video must be pride based, some of you english scolars make me smile, even your capital city is a former roman garisson that was proudly called Londonium.

  3. I´m a Latin teacher at high school and university in Mexico and I think these kind of material is great. But in public schools not all the students are bilingual. So, it could be great that they would have subtitles. I hope that could be in a future!! Thanks!!

  4. I’m a Latin student and this was so intriguing. Often times I wish Latin was still spoken. I can’t wait to go to Rome one day!

  5. Rome holds a very vital as well as invulnerable….place in World History…..I wish to visit Rome…..!!!😍😍😍😍😍

  6. Very good and very very good context clues on how Ancient Rome's civilization.I thank you for the good ideas and clues to civilizations in Rome. 😀

  7. Don't use your brains of to day. to think of Roman world of 2000 years ago. It was a complete different world at that time.try thinking of the great Etruscans how started it all!!!🇮🇹

  8. The only lesson to be learned for times eternal is that Jesus Christ is Lord and that He is the only way to heaven and that every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess that He is Lord to the glory of the Father. His blood was shed for the remission of sins for whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. You want to look to Rome for what a good society and a long-lasting society should be? You're looking to the wrong place. Someday soon an eternal Kingdom will be ushered in and it will be ushered in buy the Lord of lords and the King of Kings. Will you be there?

  9. “Romulus AND his twin brother Remus is said to have founded Rome.”

    Romulus AND Remus

    Go read the Wikipedia page and you’ll know what I’m talking about.

  10. What book would you pls recommend me to read- about ancient Rome history, the buildings and so on? Smg not too expert haha

  11. I like Rom's sculptures, national traditions ❤ it's world's main city❤ mothercity❤ it's old place and I think every people know if how is Rom's old live ❤ ❤ and I want tu say 🙂 Rome ise verry different place❤

  12. was in roma last year. The collosseum is nice on video but in person it's pretty meh and Rome is a shithole BTW. trash everywhere

  13. Nobody knows exactly how old the Roman empire is. When it was founded was a mystery. There are several theories but no hard evidence.

  14. I love Rome, and I love its history, but I couldn't stand 30 seconds' worth of that narrator's vocal-fry little-girl voice. Get a real narrator please, and not some college freshman reading from a script.

  15. The Roman empire actually lasted until 1453 AD with the invasion and subsequent fall of Constantinople, the heart of the Eastern Roman empire. Why is this always ignored in the history of our civilization?


  17. It would've been nicer to add that Rome (the city) fell in 476AD, but the empire really fell in 1453AD. Testament to the longevity of the empire spoken of in the video

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