I. Geography 1. The city of Rome, with its central location on the Italian Peninsula, was able to extend its influence over the entire Mediterranean Basin. 2. The Italian peninsula was protected by the sea and an arc of the mountains, called the Alps in the north.
Roman Myths of its Foundation Aeneas ( The Aenid) -- The Last Trojan Romulus and Remus – Founders of Rome The Rape of the Sabines The Rape of Lucretia – End of the Roman Kings Cincinnatus – (Dictator) 1 st Citizen-Soldier
I. Myth A. The Fall of Troy (Trojan War) 1. Aeneas: He was a cousin of King of Troy After the fall of Troy, he led a band of Trojan refugees to Italy and became the founder of Roman culture (although not of the city of Rome itself).
Aeneid: Wanderings of Aeneas Virgil (Roman Writer) made him the hero of his epic poem, the Aeneid. Aeneas eventually landed in Italy and married the daughter of the king of the Latins.
II. Myth A. Founding of Rome 1. Rome began (according to legend) when two brothers Romulus and Remus founded it in 753 B.C. a. As the legend goes the two brothers were left as babies to die on the banks of the Tiber River. A female wolf cared for them until a shepherd took them and cared for them as his sons. As grown men Romulus and Remus built a city, but fought over who should rule it. In the end Romulus killed Remus and named the city Rome.
III. Myth A. Rape of the Sabines Rome had no women; was a place for the unwanted! The Romans tricked their neighbors into coming to a festival: “Remember to bring your wives & daughters!” When the Sabines were drunk they killed or drove off the men. This led to the War with the Sabines. Legend says that the women ran out and stopped the final battle because… “They had already lost their old husbands and families they did not want to also loose their new ones!”
IV. Myth A. Rape of Lucretia The Etruscan King TARQUIN was jealous of Lucretia’s Roman Virtue, as opposed to his one wife’s, that he raped Lucretia. She was so shamed that she committed suicide. This led to a vengeful mob that hunted down the Etruscans and killed them, freeing the Romans of their masters.
This led to the Roman Republic First Two Consuls (Presidents ) of Rome Lucius Junius Brutus Lucius Sextius (Lucretia’s Husband)
V. Myth A. Cincinnatus: First Citizen-Soldier 1.
V. Myth A. Cincinnatus: First Citizen-Soldier He was a Farmer and respected leader in Rome. When enemies attacked Rome he was elected dictator. A dictator was in office for 6 months and had the ultimate power of life and death. He defeated the enemies in 2 weeks. He could have stayed on for the rest of his term but laid down his power and returned to his farm.
V. Myth A. Cincinnatus: First Citizen-Soldier Selfless Honor Hard Worker Leader Service Hero
III. Early Roman History 1. Around 750 BC, a group of people called Latins built villages along the Tiber River. 2. In the late 600’s BC Rome came under the rule of Etruscan kings and grew into a large & prosperous city.
III. Early Roman History 3. Etruscans: a. Had a written language the Romans would adapt b. Paved roads, drained marshes, and constructed sewers c. Over time they blended into the local Roman population
IV. The Roman Republic 1. In 509 BC wealthy Roman landowners overthrew the Etruscan king and established a republic. a. Republic -a form of government in which voters elect officials to run the state. 2. In the Roman Republic only free adult males were allowed to vote and take part in the government.
IV. Roman Republic 3. Senate a. The Senate was the most powerful of the governing bodies because they: 1. Controlled public funds 2. Decided foreign policy 3. Acted as a court 4. Could name a dictator, or absolute ruler, to govern in times of crisis
IV. Roman Republic 4. Consuls a. After the Etruscan monarchy ended in 509 BC, 2 individuals were elected to one-year terms to serve as consuls, or chief executives. b. The consuls ran the government, commanded the army & could appoint dictators. c. Each consul could veto, or refuse to approve the acts of the other consul (checks and balances)
IV. Roman Republic 5. Assemblies a. Several assemblies existed in the Roman Republic b. Citizens in these assemblies voted on laws & elected officials. c. They also elected 10 officials called tribunes who had some power over actions by the Senate & other officials
V. Roman Social Classes 1. Patricians a. Powerful landowners who controlled the government b. As nobles they inherited their power 2. Plebeians a. The rest of the population, mainly farmers and workers b. Over time their power increased. They were allowed to join the army, hold government office, and form their own assemblies.
VI. Twelve Tables 1. In 450 BC, the plebeians forced the government to write down the laws of the Roman Republic 2. These laws were engraved on tablets called the 12 Tables and placed in the Forum, the chief public square. 3. This was one of the greatest victories of the plebeians in their struggle for civic rights