Ancient Rome




Locatedin seven hills, was considered the “capital of theworld” due to its monumental buildings. These encompassed the Forumof Trajan, the Colosseum, as well as the Pantheon. Some of the majorfeatures of Rome included the temples, arenas, brothels, basilicas,forums, taverns, theaters, as well as gymnasiums. Rome was governedby emperors, and the initial emperor was Augustus. hadmore than one million dwellers. While the rich chose to live on thehills, the poor inhabited resided in apartment buildings which wereclose to the city center considering that public transport did notexist. The Roman government had the responsibility of providing freefood to its people. It acquired, shipped, stored, and distributedfood, especially wheat, to Rome as well as other key urban locale.This was a high priority area which ensured that for two centuries,there were no food shortages or dissatisfaction which couldjeopardize the administration of emperors.

Entertainmentwas a characteristic of the . Various kinds ofentertainment were used by the emperors with the aim of appeasing theurban population. They included musical and theatrical performances,mock sea battles, gladiatorial combat, wild-beast hunts, publicassassination as well as chariot races. The Colosseum couldaccommodate 50, 000 Romans spectators. The games presented asignificant occasion in which the emperor could present himself tothe population and demonstrate his respect towards them by sparing acriminal gladiator who won spectators’ support. The Colosseum wasopened by Emperor Titus in AD 80, during which different games wereheld for 100 days.

Approximately10 percent of the inhabitants resided in thousand cities whichextended from Britain to Syria. These included London, Arles, Timgad,Antioch, and Alexandria. The cities were relatively small and just afew had over 10,000 occupants. The development of trade and militarysettlement resulted in the growth of new cities in the westernprovinces, characterized by temples and a forum. The local elitecarried the trouble of efficient government considering that only aminiature civil service was used to govern a large empire. Theyemployed their resources to finance public service work. The westerncities had a municipal council referred to as curia. Together withyearly voted for officials, the city council main duties were tocontrol supply of food, religious festival, local building projects,public services, as well as town finance. Order was maintained in themunicipal considering that similar cultural and social techniquesemployed by Rome were extended by the local authorities.Nevertheless, the economic decline and limited economic growthexperienced in the empire made it difficult for city officials toexecute public responsibilities such as collection of taxes andmaintaining order. This undermined the local government system makingthe empire uncontrollable.

Mostof the Empires population dwelled in the rural areas doing manuallabor for the wealthy. The subjects resided in fragile agriculturalhuts, whereas the wealthy who invested in land (estates) resided inthe cities. Rome had a dictatorial system which made life for ruraldwellers extremely harsh. As compared to urban workers, agriculturalslaves received harsh treatment from estate overseers. Poverty wascharacteristic for local villagers and they did not enjoy anyentertainment or free food as the city dwellers. This made mostpeasants to move to the city, resulting in depopulation in thecountryside. Although loans were provided by emperors to motivatefarmers to remain in the rural areas, it was also characterized byslavery.