Paul of Tarsus
Paul set the tone for Christianity, including its emphasis on celibacy and the theory of divine grace and salvation, as well as eliminating the circumcision requirement. It was Paul who used the term euangelion, ‘the gospel’ in connection with the teaching of Christ .
Paul met James, the brother of Jesus, and Peter, the Apostle, in Jerusalem. He then went on to Antioch where he converted Gentiles. This helped make Christianity a universal religion.
The Roman Republic was the period of the ancient Roman civilization characterized by a republican form of government. It began with the overthrow of the Roman monarchy, c. 508 BC, and lasted 482 years until its subversion, through a series of civil wars, into the Principate form of government and the imperial period.
The Roman Republic was governed by a complex constitution, which centered on the principles of a separation of powers and checks and balances. The evolution of the constitution was heavily influenced by the struggle between the aristocracy (the patricians), and other Romans who were not from famous families, the plebeians. Early in its history, the republic was controlled by an aristocracy of individuals who could trace their ancestry back to the early history of the kingdom. Over time, the laws that allowed these individuals to dominate the government were repealed, and the result was the emergence of a new aristocracy which depended on the structure of society, rather than the law, to maintain its dominance.
The Senate of the Roman Empire was a political institution in the ancient Roman Empire. After the fall of the Roman Republic, the constitutional balance of power shifted from the \”Roman Senate\” to the \”Roman Emperor.\” Beginning with the first emperor, Augustus, the Emperor and the Senate were technically two co-equal branches of government. In practice, however the actual authority of the imperial Senate was negligible, as the Emperor held the true power of the state. As such, membership in the Senate became sought after by individuals seeking prestige and social standing, rather than actual authority. During the reigns of the first Emperors, legislative, judicial, and electoral powers were all transferred from the \”Roman assemblies\” to the Senate. However, since the control that the Emperor held over the senate was absolute, the Senate acted as a vehicle through which the Emperor exercised his autocratic powers.
The consul was an elected Roman magistrate, with regal power during the Republican period of Roman history.
Following the expulsion of the kings of Rome, Rome became a Republic, with a new type of leader. For this purpose, the Romans invented the new position of consul (by 181 B.C., limited to men of at least 43 years of age). It conferred a limited term of absolute power; however, the power wielded was less than that of the king, since it was split between 2 men (consuls) and limited to a single year. Ten years were supposed to elapse before serving as consul a second time.
The term patrician originally referred to a group of ruling class families in ancient Rome, including both their natural and adopted members. In the late Roman Empire, the class was broadened to include high administrative officials, and after the fall of the Western Empire it remained a high honorary title in the Byzantine Empire. Medieval patrician classes were once again formally defined groups of leading burgess families in many medieval Italian republics, such as Venice and Genoa, and subsequently \”patrician\” became a vaguer term used for aristocrats and the higher bourgeoisie in many countries.
A plebeian is a member of the general citizenry in ancient Rome as opposed to the privileged patrician class. The distinction was probably originally based on the wealth and influence of certain families who organized themselves into patrician clans under the early republic, during the 5th and 4th centuries bc. Plebeians were originally excluded from the Senate and from all public offices except that of military tribune. Before the passage of the law known as the Lex Canuleia, they were also forbidden to marry patricians. Until 287 bc the plebeians waged a campaign to have their civil disabilities abolished. They organized themselves into a separate corporation and withdrew from the state on perhaps as many as five or more critical occasions to compel patrician concessions; such a withdrawal was termed a secessio. The plebeian corporation held its own assemblies, elected its own officials, who were usually more well-to-do plebeians, and kept its own records. An important step in the plebeian campaign was the achievement of inviolability of their tribunes.
In the early days of Rome, when all the citizens were in one or another of the three tribes, the Ramnes, the Tities, and the Luceres, the leader of the tribe was known as the tribunus ‘tribune.’ These acted as the leader of their people in civil and religious matters and also in war. When the number of tribes was increased to 30, the leader of each tribe was still called a tribune. Over time his function became more limited and specialized.
The three Punic Wars between Carthage and Rome took place over nearly a century, beginning in 264 B.C. and ending with the destruction of Carthage in 146 B.C. By the time the First Punic War broke out, Rome had become the dominant power throughout the Italian peninsula, while Carthage-a powerful city-state in northern Africa-had established itself as the leading maritime power in the world. The First Punic War broke out in 264 B.C. when Rome interfered in a dispute on the Carthaginian-controlled island of Sicily; the war ended with Rome in control of both Sicily and Corsica and marked the empire’s emergence as a naval as well as a land power. In the Second Punic War, the great Carthaginian general Hannibal invaded Italy and scored great victories at Lake Trasimene and Cannae before his eventual defeat at the hands of Rome’s Scipio Africanus in 202 B.C. left Rome in control of the western Mediterranean and much of Spain. In the Third Punic War, the Romans, led by Scipio the Younger, captured and destroyed the city of Carthage in 146 B.C., turning Africa into yet another province of the mighty Roman Empire.
A latifundium is a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. The latifundia of Roman history were great landed estates, specializing in agriculture destined for export: grain, olive oil, or wine. They were characteristic of Magna Graecia and Sicily, of Egypt and the North African Maghreb and of Hispania Baetica in southern Spain. The latifundia were the closest approximation to industrialized agriculture in Antiquity, and their economics depended upon slave labour.
Julius Caesar was born in Rome on 12 or 13 July 100 BC into the prestigious Julian clan. His family were closely connected with the Marian faction in Roman politics. Caesar himself progressed within the Roman political system, becoming in succession quaestor, aedile and praetor. In 61-60 BC he served as governor of the Roman province of Spain. Back in Rome in 60 BC, Caesar made a pact with Pompey and Crassus, who helped him to get elected as consul for 59 BC. The following year he was appointed governor of Roman Gaul where he stayed for eight years, adding the whole of modern France and Belgium to the Roman empire, and making Rome safe from the possibility of Gallic invasions. He made two expeditions to Britain, in 55 BC and 54 BC.
Augustus was the founder of the Roman Empire and its first Emperor, ruling from 27 BC until his death in 14 AD.
He was born Gaius Octavius into an old and wealthy equestrian branch of the plebeian Octavii family. Following the assassination of his maternal great-uncle Julius Caesar in 44 BC, Caesar’s will named Octavius as his adopted son and heir. Together with Mark Antony and Marcus Lepidus, he formed the Second Triumvirate to defeat the assassins of Caesar. Following their victory at Philippi, the Triumvirate divided the Roman Republic among themselves and ruled as military dictators.[note 3] The Triumvirate was eventually torn apart under the competing ambitions of its members: Lepidus was driven into exile and stripped of his position, and Antony committed suicide following his defeat at the Battle of Actium by Augustus in 31 BC.
Marcus Antonius (January 14, 83 BC – August 1, 30 BC), commonly known in English as Mark Antony, was a Roman politician and general who played a critical role in the transformation of the Roman Republic from an oligarchy into the autocratic Roman Empire.
Antony was an important supporter of and military commander for Julius Caesar during his conquest of Gaul and subsequent civil war. Caesar appointed Antony the administrator of Italy while he eliminated his political opponents in Greece, North Africa, and Spain. After Caesar’s assassination in 44 BC, Antony joined forces with Marcus Lepidus, one of Caesar’s generals, and Caesar’s adoptive son Octavian in a three-man dictatorship known as the Second Triumvirate. The Triumvirate defeated Caesar’s murderers, the Liberatores, at the Battle of Philippi in 42 BC and divided government of the Republic between themselves. Antony was assigned Rome’s eastern provinces, including Rome’s client kingdom of Ptolemaic Egypt ruled by Queen Cleopatra, and command of Rome’s war against Parthia.
Cleopatra VII Philopator, known to history as Cleopatra, was the last active pharaoh of Ancient Egypt, only shortly survived by her son, Caesarion as pharaoh.
Cleopatra was a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty, a family of Greek origin that ruled Egypt after Alexander the Great’s death during the Hellenistic period. The Ptolemies, throughout their dynasty, spoke Greek and refused to speak Egyptian, which is the reason that Greek as well as Egyptian languages were used on official court documents such as the Rosetta Stone. By contrast, Cleopatra did learn to speak Egyptian and represented herself as the reincarnation of an Egyptian goddess, Isis.
Pax Romana was the long period of relative peace and minimal expansion by military force experienced by the Roman Empire in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD. Since it was established by Augustus, it is sometimes called Pax Augusta. Its span was approximately 206 years according to Encyclopedia Britannica or from 70 AD to 192 AD according to The Cambridge Ancient History.
The Pax Romana is said to have been a \”miracle\” because prior to it there had never been peace for so many centuries in a given period of human history. According to Walter Goffart however, \”peace is not what one finds in it.\” Arthur M. Eckstein writes that the period needs to be seen in contrast with the much more frequent warfare that occurred in the Roman Republic in the 4th and 3rd centuries BC. Eckstein also notes that the incipient Pax Romana appeared during the Republic and that its temporal span varied with geographical region as well: \”Although the standard textbook dates for the Pax Romana, the famous \”Roman Peace\” in the Mediterranean, are 31 BC to AD 250, the fact is that the Roman Peace was emerging in large regions of the Mediterranean at a much earlier date: Sicily after 210; peninsular Italy after 200; the Po Valley after 190; most of Spain after 133; North Africa after 100; and for ever longer stretches of time in the Greek East\”.