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Section 5 - The Fall of Rome

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1 Section 5 - The Fall of Rome

2 Section 5 - The Fall of Rome
Main Idea Events and conditions inside as well as outside the Roman Empire weakened it and led to its collapse in the west in the 400s. Objectives What problems weakened the empire in the 200s? How did Diocletian and Constantine attempt to reform the empire? What caused the invasion and ultimate fall of the empire in the 400s?

3 I. The Empire Weakens c After the Pax Romana, empire faced internal and external problems

4 I. The Empire Weakens Last Good Emperor died, Rome had no strong leader - civil wars broke out Marcus Aurelius Antoninus, the last of the Five Good Emperors Ruled from 161 to 180

5 I. The Empire Weakens Invasions - emperors increased size of army, creating economic crisis

6 Lucius Septimius Severus (146 - 211)
I. The Empire Weakens Empire became military dictatorship; legions deposed emperors, put their leaders on throne Lucius Septimius Severus ( ) Severus was a Roman general, Emperor from 193 to 211, and the first emperor to be born in Africa. His actions turned Rome into a military dictatorship, but he was popular for ending the rampant corruption of the reign of Commodus.

7 I. The Empire Weakens Emperors raised taxes; lead and copper coins caused inflation

8 II. Attempts at Reform Drastic reforms required if the empire was to survive Roman slave revolt

9 Caesar Gaius Aurelius Valerius Diocletianus Augustus
II. Attempts at Reform 284 - Diocletian took power and changed empire into absolute monarchy Caesar Gaius Aurelius Valerius Diocletianus Augustus (244– 311) Reign lasted from 20 November 284 to 1 May 305

10 II. Attempts at Reform Diocletian divided the empire; he ruled eastern half, co-emperor ruled the west

11 II. Attempts at Reform Put economy under imperial control and geared army toward defense - saved empire


13 II. Attempts at Reform 305 – Diocletian retired, civil war broke out
312 - Constantine declared emperor by his troops, restored order

14 II. Attempts at Reform Constantine legalized Christianity and built a new capital, Constantinople, in Byzantium Constantine founds Nova Roma in 324 at the site of the earlier city of Byzantium (named after the Greek colonizer Byzas). It was the capital of the Roman Empire from  Later called Constantinople in his honor.

15 III. Invasion and Fall Late 300s - Huns forced Germanic tribes into Roman Empire

16 A. The Invaders c Huns attacked the Ostrogoths; attack frightened the Visigoths, who fled into Italy

17 Alaric, leader of the Visigoths
A. The Invaders 410 – Visigoths, led by Alaric, captured and sacked Rome Alaric, leader of the Visigoths

18 Vandals plundering Rome
A. The Invaders 450s - Vandals attacked Rome, destroying everything in their path The Vandals in Rome Vandals plundering Rome

19 A. The Invaders 451 - Attila led Hun attack on Gaul; Romans allied with Visigoths to defeat Huns

20 A. The Invaders Attila planned attack on Rome; Pope Leo I persuaded him to leave Italy

21 Romulus Augustus, last emperor of Western Roman Empire
B. Fall of the West 476 –Western Empire now ruled by Germanic tribes; Ostrogoth leader Odoacer overthrew last emperor 477 Coin of Odoacer, depicted with a "barbarian" moustache. Romulus Augustus, last emperor of Western Roman Empire

22 B. Fall of the West Eastern Empire lasted until 1453; became known as the Byzantine Empire


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