Life in Ancient Rome
Chapter 9, Section 1, page 302
Chapter 9, Section 1 Objectives
After this lesson, students will be able to:
• discuss how Roman artists and writers borrowed
many ideas from Greeks, while Roman engineers
invented new structures, including domes and
• describe how the rich and poor had very different
lives in the Roman Empire,as did men and women.
Roman Culture – page 303
• Greek influences – “Captive Greece held Rome
– “drains, not brains”
– adaptive, practical people
What Was Roman Art Like? – page 303
• sculpture – more “true to life” than Greek art
• architecture – incorporated Greek styles (column and porches) but
added their own features:
– arches – Romans were the first to make full use of the arch
– vault – a curved ceiling made by building arches against one another
– concrete – a mixture of volcanic ash, lime and water
What Was Roman Art Like? – page 303
• The Pantheon – temple built to honor Rome’s
What Was Roman Art Like? – page 303
• The Colosseum – grand arena in the city of
Rome that could hold 60,000 people
Roman Literature – page 304
• Virgil – Aeneid
• Horace – satires (poke fun at human weakness)
and odes (poems that express strong emotion
about life)
• Historians
– Livy – History of Rome
– Tacitus – Annals and Histories
• Latin – language of Rome; became the basis for
many modern European languages
Roman Science and Engineering – page 305
• Galen – Greek doctor who
emphasized the
importance of anatomy
(the study of body
• Ptolemy – astronomer;
mapped thousands of
stars; “Ptolemaic Model”
→ wrong, but important
Roman Science and Engineering – page 305
• approximately 50,000 miles of roads
• Aqueducts provided water for homes, fountains,
public bathrooms, and bathhouses.
Daily Life in Rome – page 307
• Rome (city) – carefully planned city of over one
million people
– the Forum – open space in the middle of Rome that
served as a marketplace
Daily Life in Rome – page 307
• wealthy Romans
– large, comfortable, well-furnished houses (usually two)
– dinner parties
Daily Life in Rome – page 307
• poor Romans
– crowded, dirty, noisy
– Families often lived in one-room apartments that
were structurally unstable and fire prone.
– The government often provided “bread and
circuses” to distract poor people and keep them
from rioting.
Daily Life in Rome – page 307
• gladiators
– usually slaves or criminals
– gladiators with different
equipment was the norm
– fights to the death not
always the norm
– fights with animals
What Was Family Life Like? – page 307
• paterfamilias – “father of
the family”; had complete
control over the family
• wealthy boys “went” to
school – trained by a tutor
– rhetoric – public speaking
Women in Rome – page 308
• boys valued over girls
– female infanticide
– inequities in education
• Women did have some limited rights in Rome.
– property rights
– Wealthy women had a lot of independence.
– Poorer women took care of the household duties
(worked together with husband in family business or
engaged in other industries).
How Did the Romans Treat Enslaved People? – page 309
• Roman slaves filled a variety of jobs from laborers
to skilled artisans, to even doctors.
• harsh life → occasional rebellion
• 73 B.C. – Spartacus led a slave rebellion of
70,000 people that lasted two years.
Roman Religion – page 309
• “Romanized” gods from other cultures
– Zeus became known as Jupiter
– Hades became known as Pluto
– and so on…
• firm belief in signs from the gods
– auspices
• Christianity
Chapter 9, Section 1 Questions
Write the following questions and then answer them.
1. What is a vault?
2. Name the two examples of Roman architecture we
discussed and give the purpose of each.
3. What were some of Ptolemy’s scientific achievements?
4. Explain the importance of the language of the Romans.
5. What quality of life did poor Romans have?
6. Who was Spartacus?
7. How were Roman and Greek religions similar?
The Fall of Rome
Chapter 9, Section 2, page 317
Chapter 9, Section 2 Objectives
After this lesson, students will be able to:
• explain how poor leadership, a declining economy,
and attacks by Germanic tribes weakened the
Roman Empire during the A.D. 400s.
• discuss the many achievements in government,
law, language, and the arts passed on by Rome.
The Decline of Rome – page 318
Marcus Aurelius died A.D. 180
Commodus murdered A.D. 192
Pertinax & Julianus (barely)
Severan Dynasty (A.D. 193 – 235)
– Septimius Severus
– paid army well, used them as a basis of power
– Rome fell into civil war afterwards
• The “Crisis of the Third Century”
Political and Social Problems – page 318
• poor leadership (22 emperors in 50 years!)
• abandonment of the old ideals of loyalty, duty,
courage, and honor
• corruption in government
• disinterest in public service
• tax evasion
• slavery
Economic and Military Problems – page 319
economy slowed
inflation – rapidly increasing prices caused by a
decline in the value of money
– barter economy – exchanging goods without money
• civil wars
• threats on the Northern border
What Were Diocletian’s Reforms? – page 320
• Diocletian (r. A.D. 284 – A.D. 305)
introduced reforms
– economic changes
• tried to set the prices of goods and wages
• made people stay in their same jobs
– political changes
• created the Tetrarchy, which divided the
empire into four parts
– two men with the title Augustus
– two subordinates with the title Caesar
– reforms didn’t work
What Were Diocletian’s Reforms? – page 320
Who Was Constantine? – page 320
• Constantine
– civil war
– tried reforms and failed
– moved the capital from
Rome to the city of
– Byzantium →
Constantinople → Istanbul
Rome Falls – page 322
• Theodosius
– A.D. 395 formally split the empire
– Western Roman Empire – Rome
– Eastern Roman Empire – Constantinople
• Germanic tribes – Ostrogoths, Visigoths, Franks,
Vandals, Angles and Saxons
• “invasion”
– overpopulation/lack of resources
– Huns!
Rome Falls – page 322
Rome Is Invaded – page 323
• A.D. 378 – Battle of Adrianople
– Romans (Valens in the east) vs. Visigoths
– Visigoths won
– signaled that Rome was weak → other Germanic
tribes attack
• A.D. 410 – Visigoths led by Alaric sacked Rome.
• Vandals overran Spain, northern Africa, Italy, and
Rome (A.D. 455)
Rome Falls – page 324
• A.D. 476 – Odoacer overthrew Romulus
Augustulus, the last western emperor.
– This event marked the end of the Western Roman
– falls?
The Legacy of Rome – page 325
• impact on law
– the rule of law
– innocence until proven guilty
• republican style of government
– stressed citizen participation
• culture
– language
– literature
– architecture
• religion
– Christianity
This culture’s influence
is constantly around us!
Chapter 9, Section 2 Questions
1. Why did Rome’s power decline? Explain including specific
2. What is inflation? What did it lead to in the Roman Empire?
3. What did Diocletian do that was important? Why did he do it?
4. Where was the capital moved to under Constantine?
5. ______ was the leader of the Visigoths when they sacked
Rome in A.D. 410.
6. What year is often used as the one in which the Roman
Empire fell?
The Byzantine Empire
Chapter 9, Section 3, page 327
Chapter 9, Section 3 Objectives
After this lesson, students will be able to:
• describe how the Eastern Roman, or Byzantine,
Empire, which was based on Roman, Greek, and
Christian ideas, grew rich and powerful as the
Western Roman Empire declined.
• explain how the policies of Justinian and Theodora
enabled the Byzantine Empire to survive for
The Rise of the Byzantines – page 328
• Western Roman Empire ended A.D. 476
• Eastern Roman Empire thrived and became the
Byzantine Empire
– many different cultures (Greeks, Egyptians, Slavs,
Syrians, Arabs, Armenians, Jews, Persians, etc.)
– lasted about 1,000 years
Why Is Constantinople Important? – page 328
• Capital:
Constantinople –
location, location,
– natural choke point
between the Black Sea
and the Aegean Sea
– peninsula
– good harbors
– trade routes
• The Byzantine Empire
was a crossroads for
Influence of Greek Culture – page 328
• Constantinople was known
as the “New Rome.”
– followed Roman customs
and laws
• The Byzantine Empire
slowly became less
Roman and more Greek
over time.
• non-Greeks influenced as
Emperor Justinian – page 329
• Justinian (r. A.D. 527 –
– strong emperor of the
Byzantine Empire
• Theodora – wife
– helped to save Justinian’s
– expanded women’s rights
Justinian’s Conquests – page 330
• Justinian wanted to reunite the Roman Empire.
– General Belisarius
– conquered a large territory; but was unable to maintain it
Justinian’s Law Code – page 330
• Justinian Code
– ordered a simplified law code
– influential law code of the Byzantine Empire
Byzantine Civilization – page 332
• trade – spices, gems, metals, cloth, furs, honey,
• industries – farmers, herders, laborers, and artisans
• major industry – silk weaving
Byzantine Art and Architecture – page 333
• Hagia Sophia
– completed A.D. 537
– mosaics – pictures made from tiny bits of glass or
Byzantine Women – page 333
• could own property
• many served as regents – someone who stands
in for a young or sick ruler
Chapter 9, Section 3 Questions
1. Why was the Byzantine Empire wealthy?
2. What noteworthy things did the Emperor Justinian
3. What was the Hagia Sophia?
4. What is a regent?

Life in Ancient Rome