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Chapter 4: The Roman Republic
Transcript of Chapter 4: The Roman Republic
The Roman Republic
Early Society and Government
Began along banks of Tiber River about 15 miles from the seacoast.
League of Seven Hills:
People from Latium established seven villages on surrounding hills of the Tiber River.
The Founding of Rome
Arrived in Italy between 900 and 800 BC
Possibly came from Asia Minor.
Settled along Western Coast north of the Tiber River.
Competed in trade with the Greeks in Italy.
Learned about Greek myths, architecture, sculpture, and language.
Possibly the first to introduce Greek culture to the Romans.
Early government was a Monarchy;
King served as chief priest, commander of the army, and administrator of justice.
King’s authority was called the imperium
Power was symbolized by the faces:
Small bundle of rods enclosing an ax.
King was elected by the people.
Kings sought advice from a Senate.
“Common People” Farmers, Traders, and Craftsmen.
Most people belonged to this class.
Like the Greeks, Romans had legends to explain their history.
753 BC Romulus and Remus:
Twin brothers left to die who were raised by a wolf.
Left by a relative who wanted their throne
They returned as men to the place they had been discovered.
Romulus killed Remus and founded the city of Rome:
He named it after himself and was the first king.
Earliest people in Rome had migrated across the Alps:
Known as Latins, they moved south and settle in Latium on the west coast of Italy.
Phoenicians, Greeks, and Etruscans:
All three were early inhabitants of Italy.
Phoenicia had colonies on Sicily and the coast of North Africa.
Greeks also had colonies on Sicily and along the southern Italian coast.
Located in the Mediterranean world on the land of Italy.
Geographic features did not stop the Romans:
Good soil and climate for farming.
Apennine Mountains of Italy are rugged and did not prevent trade among the people.
Romans extended territory to include all the land surrounding the Mediterranean Sea:
Called Mediterranean Mare Nostrum (our sea).
Beginning of Roman Civilization
Plebeians gained equality with Patricians.
Changes made the republic more representative of the people.
New class distinction began developing:
Rich vs. Poor
Wealthy Plebeians and Patricians worked together to keep control of the Senate and hold onto power in the republic.
Plebeians improve Political and Social standing:
Gained right to hold office.
A few became Senators.
Debtor slavery and laws against intermarriage were repealed.
Trial of Assembly:
Had power to pass laws binding upon all Roman people.
Patrician judges took advantage of plebeians who were unfamiliar with unwritten Roman laws.
450 BC Unwritten laws became written:
Written on 12 tablets and hung in the Roman Forum:
This section of the city was the center of government.
Law was now applied equally
Law was learned in schools
Law of Twelve Tables became the foundation of Roman civil law.
Right to assembly and elected officials
Council of Plebeians:
Passed resolutions called plebiscites.
Elected ten men to office of tribune:
Tribunes protected common man’s rights
Struggle Within the Republic
The Early Roman Republic
Rome-The Master of the
As Masters of Rome:
Allowed conquests some self government.
After uprisings freedoms were taken away:
Rome organized Mediterranean into provinces.
Appointed Governors ruled provinces.
Goal of provinces was to pay tribute to Rome in return for order and protection.
Third Punic War
Carthage broke one provision of the treaty with Rome:
Rome demanded Carthage be moved 10 miles inland:
They fought instead.
After 3 years Rome captured Carthage:
Plowed up the land and sold survivors into slavery.
Carthage became a Roman province called Africa.
Rome controlled the Italian Peninsula
While in control Rome was merciful and fair to her subjects:
Allow subjects to live in peace, granted citizenship, the right to vote, and right to hold office.
Rome did require subjects to furnish troops to help fight wars.
The Mediterranean: A Roman Sea
Despite freeing others from Roman rule he was unable to recruit them to fight with him:
The Romans had treated them fairly.
Rome-The Master of the
Rome-The Master of Italy
Rome defeated Latin cities and the Etruscans:
This gave them control of central and Northern Italy.
Gaining Southern Italy:
Greek colonies to the south fear Roman conquest
Hire Pyrrhus (relative of Alexander) to defend them
Rome defeated Pyrrhus by joining another Greek force
Jealous of Caesar, he sought help from the Senate.
Senate ordered Caesar return to Rome without an army.
Caesar and his men crossed the Rubicon and marched toward Rome.
Corruption in government:
Provincial governors used powers for selfish gain.
Publicans collected taxes, paid them to the government and kept the leftovers for themselves.
Publicans became the most despised people in Rome.
Decline into a Dictatorship
88 BC War broke out in Asia Minor.
Marius led Tribal Assembly and Sulla led the Senate.
Failure of Reform
Elected as a Tribune in 133 BC
Strove for reforms and acted as spokesman for common man:
Wanted “Public Lands” to be divided among the poor:
The wealthy monopolized these lands for years.
Wealthy and Senators disliked his reforms:
Upon reelection they killed him and supporters and threw their bodies into the Tiber River.
Problems due to Roman expansion:
Social backbone (hardworking citizen-farmers) was broken.
Two Great Social Classes:
Basis for larger social groups:
Clan-families from a common ancestor.
Tribe-a number of clans united by common beliefs and living in a particular region.
Basic unit of early Roman society.
Small self-sufficient and self-ruled community.
Father, Wife, Children, and others such as Slaves were included:
Father (Pater in Latin) held authority over the family. (Even had the power of life and death).
Instilled values of loyalty, submission to authority, self-control, and duty into children.
Families provided foundation for Rome’s greatness.
Wealthy landholders and noble families making up the aristocratic class.
Held highest positions in early Roman Society.
Rome overthrew the Etruscan monarchy.
Rome replaced the monarchy with a republic.
What is a republic?
Held all consulships
Dominated the Senate and Assemblies
Made most laws
Controlled the Courts
Was the chief assembly of early republic.
Responsible for the following:
Voting on legislation submitted by consuls
Making declarations of war
Electing high ranking government officials
Consists of three branches:
Few social privileges
No voice in government
Excluded from holding high public office
Lost property or sold into slavery for not repaying loans.
Could not intermarry with Patricians
Two were elected for the following:
Supervise government affairs
Command Roman Army
Serve as supreme judges
Neither Consul could act without consent from the other.
One year terms:
Prevented one from becoming too powerful.
Membership and Voting determined by:
Place of Residence
Assembly of Centuries
Most powerful body in republic.
Aristocratic body that safeguarded the powers of the patrician class.
Composed of 300 members who were appointed for life
Responsible for the following:
Supervising foreign affairs
Rome was always at war with Italian neighbors:
Patrician could not handle war on their own:
Had to rely on Plebeians for help
Plebeians wanted representation in government:
Threatened to leave army in order to gain concessions from the Patricians
Results of Struggle
First Punic War
Fought for control of Sicily:
Rome feared Carthage becoming too powerful on the island.
Rome wanted to break the Carthage navy supremacy.
Rome used similar ships:
They fastened themselves to the enemy ship using a plank.
Ran across the plank and captured the ship.
Romans gained control of Sicily and forced Carthage to pay for Roman losses.
Second Punic War
War broke out when Carthage attacked a Spanish town (Roman ally) on the Mediterranean Coast:
Rome send forces to Spain and Carthage, hoping for quick victory.
Hannibal stopped Roman strategy.
Has been linked to Alexander the Great
Some tactics of his were used in WW II
Acted as a liberator to Rome’s conquered allies and offered them freedom.
Marched army into northern Italy across the Alps.
Led his army to victories over the next fifteen years.
Battle of Cannae
Hannibal outnumbered two to one by Romans:
Lined forces up just like Romans, only leaving a bulge at the center.
Formation drew Romans into a U-Shaped pocket and the cavalry circled around and attacked from the back.
Hannibal lost 6,000 Romans lost 60,000.
Carthage forced to give up all territory outside North Africa, reduce fleet to ten ships, and pay Rome for war damages.
Rome had become masters of the western world.
His strategy brought a turning point in the war for Rome.
Defeated Carthaginian forces in Spain and headed to North Africa to attack Carthage:
By the time Hannibal arrived it was too late.
Battle of Zama
“But I declare that Carthage must be destroyed”
After Second Punic War:
Rome focused on eastern Mediterranean
Macedonia, Syria, and Egypt were engaged in a power struggle.
Rome proceeded to defeat all three kingdoms:
Rome became master of the entire Mediterranean World.
Rivalry between the two led to the “Punic Wars” from 264 to 146 BC.
Lack money to get farm land back into shape.
Unable to pay taxes, and lost their land.
Could not pay off debt so they sold their land and moved to cities in search of jobs.
Few jobs available because of slaves.
Some became tenant farmers
Many farmers turned government for help.
Small farmers received no help from government.
Tribal Assembly and Senate had become too powerful.
Devastating conditions for the poor provided opportunity for the wealthy landholders:
Their interest were represented by the Senate.
Wealthy bought out small farms and controlled land in the provinces.
Senate was unwilling to address these social and economic problems.
Citizen-Farmers returning from war
Tiberius and Gaius Gracchus
Sons of a consul and grandsons of Scipio.
Became tribune in 123 BC:
Sought to carry on brother’s land reform and proposed the government sell grain at low prices.
Senate undermined the support of Gaius by offering its own programs:
They never intended the carry out these reforms.
During a riot Gaius was killed by his enemies:
Some say he committed suicide to avoid the Senate.
Disorder of the Roman state led to three Civil Wars.
First Civil War
Sulla was victorious:
Declared himself dictator and reorganized the Roman government:
Helped revive power of the Senate and proceeded to resign.
After resignation, Senate was unable to maintain power
Second Civil War
Caesar support of the common people.
Crassus, Pompey, and Julius Caesar
All three wanted to rule Rome.
Crassus had the money
Pompey support of the Senate
Fought over who would be the sole ruler of Rome.
Battle of Actium:
Octavian defeated Antony and took control over all of Rome.
As governor of Gaul, he trained a well disciplined army.
Remained popular in Rome by sending word of his military accomplishments:
Commentaries on the Gallic Wars
Alliance formed between the three in 60 BC in order to rule Rome together.
Pompey’s forces were no match for Caesar’s.
Pompey fled to Egypt where he was killed.
Caesar named himself Dictator of Rome for life.
Killed by a groups of conspirators in the Senate Chamber.
Established colonies for landless army veterans, granted citizenship to many non-Italians in the colonies, and he initiated public works programs.
Established 365 ¼ days calendar.
March 15, 44 BC
Third Civil War
Mark Antony and Octavian teamed together to capture Caesar’s murderers.
Antony ruled the East
Octavian ruled the West
Octavian vs. Antony
With Octavian in power this was the beginning of the Roman Empire.
Rome had been transformed into a government led by an imperator:
Ancient title given to commander of a victorious army.
Imperator ruled during this time with supreme power.
Rome became a leading Latin city under Etruscan rule
509 BC: Rome becomes independent and allies with other Latin cities against the Etruscans
Latin fear Rome's growing power, revolt against it
Rome gains complete control of the Italian peninsula