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SS 290 Notes

by: Samantha Notetaker
Samantha Notetaker

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Notes from assigned readings; book The worlds of medieval europe by clifford backman; pp. xvii-xxi, 3-23
History of Medieval Europe
Albert Reeves
Class Notes
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This 2 page Class Notes was uploaded by Samantha Notetaker on Saturday September 17, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ss 290 at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Prescott taught by Albert Reeves in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 11 views. For similar materials see History of Medieval Europe in History at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Prescott.

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Date Created: 09/17/16
Notes on medieval history Monday, August 15, 2016 8:00 PM Pax Romana ("Roman Peace") was the two centuries A.D. of the roman empire. Which was an age with a strong central government engineered and maintained the social stability that allowed people to prosper. The roman empire stretched over 3,000 miles from west to east. From the strait of Gibraltar to the source of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers and reached northward to Hadrian's wall ( a fortification built in A.D. 122 to protect roman Britain from the Picts of Scotland) southward to the upper edge of the Sahara. There were sixty to fifty million people in the roman empire. Rome rose to power through military might. In the Punic wars of the third century B.C. Rome defeated Carthage ( main rival) for control over western and central Mediterranean. Then subdued the weakened Greek states after the fall of alexander the greats empire. After gaining control of the known world civil wars broke out in struggles of control over the superstrate and many trying to reshape to opposing principles. Factions led by Julius Caesar favored a rigid aristocratic authoritarianism unlike the old decentralized administrative practices. Others also favored more radically democratic society. The civil wars ended in a compromise a thoroughly centralized state that delegated day to day authority to local officials. Pax Romana period was a very hierarchy obsessive society where social class and legal classification was very important. However it was very easy for families to rise from slavery to aristocrats in two or three generations. The Mediterranean Sea and Roman army were the two most influential factors in shaping the roman world. Romans referred to the Mediterranean as mare nostrum ( our sea) not as a possessive purpose but more as to recognize that the sea was the essential physical structure that held the empire together. Due to the physical characteristics of the sea it made it very easy for the roman empire to enforce directly and indirectly roman law. General rule in human history, seas don’t divide people but unite them. The army was the second chief influential structure of the roman empire, the roman empire was very different from others in its extraordinary degree of organization and professionalism under the emperor. Soldiers didn’t only fight for the glory of Rome but also for wages and a portion of the booty collected when conquering. After taking over regions they would confiscate any money that was at hand, whatever property that they desired, divided up the property, and sold prisoners of war into slavery. The army didn’t not permanently occupy land it conquered by rule of thumb. Self-identification as a roman meant more than a legal classification it meant one represented a human unity. Roman civilization lead to the blending of cultures and races. Roman tradition expected that the rich would put their wealth towards things like roads. Essential distinction lied between Honedtiores (the better people ) and the humiliores ( the lesser people). The rich had lighter penalties and had immunity to torture. While poor people faced brutal death for capital crimes. Four main groups made up the honestiores ( senators, equestrians , the curiales, and all army veterans, immediate families were included) Curiales served as unsalaried magistrates who conduct day to day administration or cities and towns. A women who held the social rank of a Curiales could also hold a political position. During the Pax Romana period they had free marriages that allowed women to mainly be independent and own property run business etc. First roman emperor was Augustus who ruled from 27 B.C to 14 A.D. he emerged from the civil wars and quickly set to reforming the roman constitution. He established a form of government called the principate ( basically emperor had absolute power over military and senate). His successors were Tiberius ( 14-37), Caligula ( 37-41), Claudius ( 41- 54), Nero ( 54- 68) It is popular fiction that senate formed a seat of power but the emperor really ran the government as a dictatorship. The empires highest point was reached in the so called age of the five good emperors Nerva, Trajan , Hadrian, Antonius Pius, Marcus Aurelius At the end of the second century the empire started to meet agricultural and industrial decline, inflation ran rampant, imperial coinage debased, disease and poverty decreased population, civil wars. Matters grew worse into the third century with throught a 45 year period 65 rulers all except one who died of natural causes had all died in battle field defeat. By Diocletian' s reign the senate played no govermental role whatsoever


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