Compare/Contrast Essay


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Compare/Contrast Essay

  1. 1. Sam Jones<br />March 7, 2011<br />Honors lit- Period 1<br />Comparing and Contrasting Roman and Mongolian Society <br />The cavalry rushes across the plain, swords swinging and arrows flying. They charge into the enemy, the rider’s fur clothing stained with blood. On the backs of their horses, they carry all they need for their nomadic lifestyle. In the west, hundreds of years earlier, armored soldiers marched across the battlefield, protected by an impenetrable box of shields. They would never have considered the future cavalry’s method of uncontrolled, frenzied charge. The Mongols and their nomadic, barbaric lifestyle differed greatly from the Romans in terms of war, dress and housing. <br />The Mongols used tactics that put the lives of their soldiers at great risk. They charged the enemy, and often encircled him. However, if defeat was imminent, the Mongols retreated. This forced the enemy to spread out in groups, in an effort to pursue the retreating Mongols down. The Mongols then slaughtered the small groups one by one, until the army was killed or surrendered. The Romans used less offensive tactics, often destroying the supply of food until the enemy starved or was defeated. They would use the captured food stores to support their own troops, allowing them to wait any length of time the enemy may take before giving up. However, the Mongols and the Romans differed in peace, as well as war time. <br />The Mongolian dress included clothing made from the fur of goats, a type of dress called a del, and hats. All of their clothing had to be made to help protect them from the harsh cold of the Asian Steppes where they resided. The color of clothing could range from bright and vibrant to dull, but did not hold a special meaning in the Mongolian society. The Romans, however, did not make clothes for warmth; if they were cold, they wore extra layers. Their location in the Mediterranean did not have a harsh climate, so warmth was unimportant. Tunics were worn by the military and commoners, and free citizens wore togas. Colors on men’s clothing often showed the wearer’s social status, while women’s clothing could be any color. The differences between Mongolian and Roman clothing may seem great, yet are minor when compared to the variations between their housing. <br />The Mongols lived a nomadic life, carrying all of their possessions with them. Their housing consisted of little more than tents made of felt, which were set up in groups of three or more. These groups never stayed in one place for long before moving to areas that were safer or offered more resources. The Romans, however, lived in more substantial dwellings. Roman houses were made of wood or even brick, and featured rooms, courtyards, and balconies. While they did not have running water or many other technologies we take for granted today, the houses were far more advanced than those of the Mongols. The differences in their housings showed the permanence of their society. The Mongolians were not a fixed society, so their dwellings did not support that kind of lifestyle. <br />There are many differences between the Roman and Mongolian cultures and customs. Their fighting tactics varied greatly, as did their clothing and dwellings. However, both founded great empires that covered large amounts of land, regardless of their differences. These empires still have an influence today in our buildings, military tactics, and some clothing. They also demonstrated that the trappings of a society do not reflect its impact, but rather their innovation, spirit, and organization. In that, these societies were very similar.<br />Works Cited<br />"Strategy and Tactics." The Roman Military. N.p., n.d. Web. 7 Mar 2011. <>.<br />Oestmoen, Per. "The Mongol Military Might." Cold Siberia. N.p., Jan. 18, 2002. Web. 7 Mar 2011. <>.<br />“The Mongols in World History.” Asia topics in World History, 2004. Web. 15 Feb 2011. <><br />“The Mongol Empire.” All Empires, Feb 2007. Web. 17 Feb 2011. <><br />