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6 Roman religion tolerance

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6 Roman religion tolerance

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6 Roman religion tolerance

  1. 1. How tolerant were the Romans? Teaching notes This resource was designed to fit within a Y7 sequence on the Romans. Students had studied some basics on Roman society and the conquest of Britain. Objectives • To identify some of the Gods that the early Romans believed in. • To describe the range of religious beliefs held by people living within the provinces of the Roman Empire. • To explain why the Romans treated people of different religions differently. • To use this information to evaluate how tolerant the Romans were. Resources • Roman god information cards (pp.4-6) – enough to place around the room • Student sheet one (p.3) and student sheet two (p.7) – one for each student • Map of the Roman Empire in the 3rd century (see PDF p.8) – enough for all to see • Conquered peoples character cards (pp. 8-9) – one for each student Suggested activities Starter: Ask students to sketch a picture of what a God might look like. Ask students to hold up or share their sketches with the people around them. Are there any common features? It is likely that a large proportion of your students will have drawn a bearded man in the clouds! Follow this up with some questioning: What religion do you think this representation of God comes from? Does the religion have one God or many Gods? What powers does the God have? Share the idea that many of our pictorial representations of God have their roots in Roman religious beliefs. Read through the first section of information on student sheet one. Main tasks: Task 1: Distribute the Roman god cards around the classroom. Ask students to move around the room and look at the information. They should note down key information about each God © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 1 of 9
  2. 2. How tolerant were the Romans? including their name, their qualities/powers and a suggestion as to who might have worshipped them. Mini plenary: Consider how tolerant the Romans were on the basis of what has been learned so far. Task 2: Look at the map of the extent of the Roman Empire in the 3rd century. Ask students to consider what the Romans would have encountered on their journey of expansion. Feedback their suggestions and develop the idea that the Romans would have come across people of many different faiths whilst on their travels. Task 3: Now ask students to each adopt the character of one of the conquered peoples using the character cards. They should fill in the details on student sheet two for their own character, and then circulate to find out about other groups’ experiences. Plenary: Ask students to place themselves on an opinion line for the main enquiry question ranging from extremely intolerant to extremely tolerant. Ask individual students to justify their place on the line by explaining the reasons for their decision. Extension/ consolidation: Students might complete an extended piece of writing on the main enquiry question aiming to produce a balanced answer which gives evidence to support and oppose the idea and to reach a conclusion. © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 2 of 9
  3. 3. How tolerant were the Romans? Student sheet one Background information: Roman gods • The early Romans believed in many different gods. • They would pray to different gods for different things as each god had unique powers e.g. the god of war, the god of wisdom etc. • Gods had personal meanings to the Romans. • They often had stories to explain how the different gods were born. Task: Move around the room and look at the information about Roman gods. Note down key information about each god including their name, their qualities/powers and a suggestion as to who might have worshipped them. God/Goddess name: Qualities/powers: What kind of person would have worshipped this God? God/Goddess name: Qualities/powers: What kind of person would have worshipped this God? God/Goddess name: Qualities/powers: What kind of person would have worshipped this God? God/Goddess name: Qualities/powers: What kind of person would have worshipped this God? God/Goddess name: Qualities/powers: What kind of person would have worshipped this God? God/Goddess name: Qualities/powers: What kind of person would have worshipped this God? God/Goddess name: Qualities/powers: What kind of person would have worshipped this God? God/Goddess name: Qualities/powers: What kind of person would have worshipped this God? God/Goddess name: Qualities/powers: What kind of person would have worshipped this God? © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 3 of 9
  4. 4. How tolerant were the Romans? Jupiter Jupiter means Father. A large temple in Rome called the Optimus Maximus was dedicated to Jupiter who was one of the most well-known Roman gods. Many people living in the city thought that Jupiter guarded the temple and kept them safe from attack. Jupiter was king of all Roman gods. He carried a Thunderbolt as his weapon. All other gods were scared of him. They believed he was married to the goddess Juno. Juno Juno was believed to be the daughter of Saturn and the wife of Jupiter making her the queen of the Roman gods. She was believed to be responsible for looking after the women of Rome and for overseeing all marriages. All Roman women were thought to have a spirit which looked after them for all of their lives. This was called their Juno in recognition of the goddess. She is not usually pictured carrying a weapon, but her clothing, features and stance show that she was considered ready for war by her followers. Neptune Neptune was the god of the sea and brother to Jupiter. He carried a trident (three pronged spear). He is often pictured riding an animal which resembles a cross between a dolphin and a horse. He was believed to be very powerful, controlling the movement of the sea and even causing earthquakes. Many Romans viewed him as a moody god to beware of! © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 4 of 9
  5. 5. How tolerant were the Romans? Diana Diana was believed to be the goddess of the moon. Her twin brother Apollo was the god of the sun. She was also the goddess of hunting so she was always armed with a bow and arrows and is often shown wearing hunting boots. A popular legend said that when she caught a hunter called Actaeon spying on her whilst bathing she turned him into a stag! Her mother Leto was thought to have given birth to Diana and Apollo very easily so Diana was a goddess often prayed to by pregnant women. Apollo Apollo was the Roman god of the sun. He was believed to drive a chariot (horse drawn buggy) across the sky, moving the sun to bring day and night He was prayed to for a number of different things. He was believed to be able to heal the sick, create music, find the truth and more! His main power was to harness the light of the sun. Venus Venus was the Roman goddess of love, beauty and fertility. She was believed to have been born in the sea and is sometimes depicted in a large scallop shell! She was thought to be both kind and ruthless when it suited her. She was one of the most popular gods and even attracted her own groups who thought that she was the most important god. These were known as cults of Venus. Julius Caesar (a Roman Emperor) claimed that she was his ancestor. © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 5 of 9
  6. 6. How tolerant were the Romans? Minerva Minerva was the goddess of wisdom. She was often pictured carrying an owl which was thought to be a wise creature. It was common for Romans involved in schools and business to follow her. She was believed to have had a very unusual birth, popping directly out of her father Jupiter’s head! Some writings suggest that she was also the goddess of medicine and doctors. She was not, however, afraid of blood shed having helped to slay the Medusa (snake headed monster). Mars Mars was the Roman god of war. He was believed to be the father of Romulus and Remus who founded Rome. He was the second most important god to the Romans. It was common for him to be worshipped by Roman legionaries (soldiers). Although he is often thought to represent conflict and fighting, he was most commonly represented holding a shield for defense. This was because the military power of Rome was thought of as a way to secure peace. Cupid Cupid was the son of Venus and the god of desire and affection. He carried a bow and arrow which were the source of his power. Anyone hit by him was overwhelmed by love! He was considered quite mischievous by the Romans. © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 6 of 9
  7. 7. How tolerant were the Romans? Student sheet two You are now a member of one of the conquered territories of the Roman Empire. Task: 1) Read your character card. Complete the first row of your table with the information from your card. 2) Move around the room. Meet each of the other five characters completing the rest of your table as you go. Name From Beliefs How did the Romans treat this person? © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 7 of 9
  8. 8. How tolerant were the Romans? Name: Andraste From: Bath, Britain Religious beliefs: As a Briton, you believe in many of your own gods. At the hot springs in Bath you worship the goddess Sulis who you believe is wise. How did the Romans treat you? When the Romans arrived they built a town in Bath and developed the baths. They called the town Aquae Sulis. They built a temple to your goddess. They combined the worship of their own goddess Minerva, with the worship of your goddess and called her ‘Sulis Minerva.’ Name: Bardiya From: Persia Religious beliefs: You believe in the Persian god known as Mithras. Mithras is a god concerned with the battle between good and evil. You have many secrets and rituals and you worship in underground temples. How did the Romans treat you? When the Romans arrived many of the soldiers adopted your religion. However, this religion was only for men! Keyword: Adopted – to take on a religion Name: Chileos From: Greece Religious beliefs: You have several gods. One god you believe in is the Greek god Ascelpios. You believe that if you get ill, you have to sleep at the temple of Asclepios and he will cure you in the night. How did the Romans treat you? The Romans really liked your religion. They happily started worshipping Asclepios themselves. They even built temples to him in Rome! © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 8 of 9
  9. 9. How tolerant were the Romans? Name: Paul From: You are a Roman citizen but you travel all over the empire and the world to spread the message of Christianity. Religious beliefs: You are a Christian. You believe that there is only one God. You believe that Jesus was the son of God. How did the Romans treat you? At first the Romans saw no problem with Jesus or his followers. However, you now believe that Jews persuaded the Roman governor to crucify Jesus. After this, people like you who believe in Christ began to travel around to spread the word. You have been persecuted in many ways. 250 years later Christianity would become very popular and eventually Constantine would make it the official Roman religion. Name: Drustan From: Anglesey, Britain Religious beliefs: You are a Druid. You believe that only the Druids know the secrets of the Gods. You are respected by the leaders of many tribes who will often ask for your advice. You believe in human sacrifice. How did the Romans treat you? The Romans were determined to wipe out your people because you would often stand up to them and help fight against them. They chased the Druids killed them all. Name: Ezra From: Judea, Syria Religious beliefs: You are a Jew. You believe that there is a single God who created the universe. You have many laws which affect every part of your life. How did the Romans treat you? Your home of Judea is occupied by the Romans. At first you were allowed a lot of freedom and your leader King Herod was allowed to build a huge new temple. However, in 41 AD you began to be angry that your city was occupied and to revolt against the Romans. In retaliation, the emperor Vespasian sent in 50,000 Roman troops who killed one million Jewish people. © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 9 of 9
  10. 10. How tolerant were the Romans? Name: Paul From: You are a Roman citizen but you travel all over the empire and the world to spread the message of Christianity. Religious beliefs: You are a Christian. You believe that there is only one God. You believe that Jesus was the son of God. How did the Romans treat you? At first the Romans saw no problem with Jesus or his followers. However, you now believe that Jews persuaded the Roman governor to crucify Jesus. After this, people like you who believe in Christ began to travel around to spread the word. You have been persecuted in many ways. 250 years later Christianity would become very popular and eventually Constantine would make it the official Roman religion. Name: Drustan From: Anglesey, Britain Religious beliefs: You are a Druid. You believe that only the Druids know the secrets of the Gods. You are respected by the leaders of many tribes who will often ask for your advice. You believe in human sacrifice. How did the Romans treat you? The Romans were determined to wipe out your people because you would often stand up to them and help fight against them. They chased the Druids killed them all. Name: Ezra From: Judea, Syria Religious beliefs: You are a Jew. You believe that there is a single God who created the universe. You have many laws which affect every part of your life. How did the Romans treat you? Your home of Judea is occupied by the Romans. At first you were allowed a lot of freedom and your leader King Herod was allowed to build a huge new temple. However, in 41 AD you began to be angry that your city was occupied and to revolt against the Romans. In retaliation, the emperor Vespasian sent in 50,000 Roman troops who killed one million Jewish people. © www.teachithistory.co.uk 2013 20480 Page 9 of 9

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