Western Roman Empire Flashcards, test questions and answers
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What is Western Roman Empire?
The Western Roman Empire was a large political entity that existed from around the 1st century BC to the 5th century AD. It was one of the largest empires in human history and for centuries, it was the dominant power in Europe, North Africa, and parts of Asia. The Western Roman Empire began to decline in the late 5th century AD due to numerous factors including internal political turmoil, foreign invasions, economic decline, and military weakness. The last emperor of Rome was deposed in 476 AD by a Germanic tribal leader Odoacer who founded a new kingdom and ushered in the Early Middle Ages.The Western Roman Empire is often considered to be one of the most powerful empires ever created. During its height it controlled much of Europe including Italy, Gaul (modern France), Spain and Britain as well as parts of North Africa and modern day Germany. The capital city of Rome served as an important center of commerce and culture with many monuments such as temples, public baths, aqueducts being built throughout its extensive territories. Rome’s government system consisted mainly of two different classes; citizens who could vote or serve in government offices were known as Patricians while those without these rights were called Plebeians. This system allowed Rome to expand their territories quickly through military conquest but led to internal dissent between the upper-class Patrician rulers and lower class Plebeians which ultimately weakened their hold on some provinces. A series of weak leaders eventually led to civil war within Rome which resulted in numerous invasions from foreign tribes like Goths from Central Europe who sacked Rome itself in 410AD. These invasions combined with a weakening economy due to inflation caused by debased coinage led to further decline until 476 AD when Odoacer overthrew Romulus Augustalus ,the last western Emperor ,and dissolved what remained of the western empire leaving only its eastern counterpart standing .The fall of Western Roman Empire marked a major turning point in European history ushering out antiquity era into medieval times where small kingdoms replaced large empires leading towards fragmentation rather than unification across continents. Its legacy however lives on through its vast network roads built across Europe ,laws based on Roman legal code that are still used today ,and Latin language which is still spoken throughout Catholic countries even now .