Section 5 Notes







Roman historian Marcellinus witnessed
declining values and moral decay in Roman
society
The end of Roman greatn...







The death of Marcus Aurelius in 180 AD
ended the Pax Romana and for the next 100
years political and economic t...





Two major economic problems emerged--High taxes to support the army and the
bureaucracy placed heavy burdens on
bu...











To make the empire easier to govern, Diocletian
divided it into two parts
He kept control of the wealthie...







In 312 AD, Constantine gained the thrown and as
emperor he continued Diocletian’s reforms
He took two steps tha...








The reforms of Diocletian and Constantine
had mixed results
They revived the economy
By increasing the power ...




The Huns drive into eastern Europe led the
Visigoths, Ostrogoths, and other Germanic
peoples crossing into Roman ter...











In 378 AD, the Roman army was defeated by
the Visigoths at Adrianople
In 410 AD, the Visigoth general Ala...








Modern historians have identified several
causes for the fall of the Roman empire
Military causes
Political c...






Roman legions of the late empire were
weakened because they lacked the discipline
and training of past Roman armi...







As the government became more oppressive
and authoritarian, it lost the support of the
people
Growing number of...






Heavier and heavier taxes were required to
support the vast government bureaucracy and
huge military establishmen...






Decline in values such as
patriotism, discipline, and devotion to duty
Upper class devoting themselves to luxury
...
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Section 5 notes

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Section 5 notes

  1. 1. Section 5 Notes
  2. 2.     Roman historian Marcellinus witnessed declining values and moral decay in Roman society The end of Roman greatness did not occur overnight Decay had set in centuries before the final fall A complex combination of problems led to the decline and fall of the western Roman empire
  3. 3.     The death of Marcus Aurelius in 180 AD ended the Pax Romana and for the next 100 years political and economic turmoil rocked the Roman empire A disruptive political pattern emerged---a “revolving door” or rulers In one 50 year period there were 26 different emperors These emperors seized power and ruled for a few months or years until they themselves were overthrown or assassinated
  4. 4.    Two major economic problems emerged--High taxes to support the army and the bureaucracy placed heavy burdens on business people and small farmers Farmland that had been overcultivated for too many years lost its productivity
  5. 5.       To make the empire easier to govern, Diocletian divided it into two parts He kept control of the wealthier eastern part for himself and appointed a co-emperor to rule the western provinces Diocletian tried to increase the prestige of the empire by surrounding himself with elaborate ceremonies To slow inflation, he fixed prices for goods and services Other laws forced farmers to remain on their land and for sons to follow their fathers’ occupations These rules were meant to ensure steady production of food and other goods
  6. 6.     In 312 AD, Constantine gained the thrown and as emperor he continued Diocletian’s reforms He took two steps that changed the course of European history--He granted toleration to Christians and encouraged the rapid growth of Christianity with the empire and guaranteed its future success He built a new capital, Constantinople, on the Bosporus thereby making the eastern portion of the empire the center of power and ensured the survival of the eastern portion for centuries to come
  7. 7.      The reforms of Diocletian and Constantine had mixed results They revived the economy By increasing the power of the government, they helped hold the empire together for another century Still, the reforms failed to stop the long-term decline In the end, internal problems combined with attacks from outside to bring the empire down
  8. 8.   The Huns drive into eastern Europe led the Visigoths, Ostrogoths, and other Germanic peoples crossing into Roman territory seeking safety The weakened Roman legions were hardpressed to stop the invasion from these people
  9. 9.       In 378 AD, the Roman army was defeated by the Visigoths at Adrianople In 410 AD, the Visigoth general Alaric overran Italy and plundered Rome Attila the Hun led forces that destroyed Rome Attila’s nickname was the “Scourge of God” Finally in 476 AD, Odoacer, a Germanic leader, ousted the emperor in Rome Later, historians referred to that event as the “fall” of Rome
  10. 10.      Modern historians have identified several causes for the fall of the Roman empire Military causes Political causes Economic causes Social causes
  11. 11.    Roman legions of the late empire were weakened because they lacked the discipline and training of past Roman armies Rome resorted to hiring mercenaries (foreign soldiers serving for pay) to defend its borders and these mercenaries felt little loyalty to Rome Germanic invasions
  12. 12.     As the government became more oppressive and authoritarian, it lost the support of the people Growing number of corrupt officials Frequent civil wars over succession to the imperial throne Division of empire into two parts
  13. 13.    Heavier and heavier taxes were required to support the vast government bureaucracy and huge military establishment Reliance on slave labor discouraged exploring new technologies Population decline due to war and epidemic diseases
  14. 14.    Decline in values such as patriotism, discipline, and devotion to duty Upper class devoting themselves to luxury and self-interest rather than leadership “Bread and circuses” were costly and undermined the self-reliance of the masses
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