Romans Rising Essay

Submitted By loosetrumpet
Words: 1163
Pages: 5

It is common knowledge that Rome existed as one of the greatest empires to have existed in human history. At the peak of Roman power, its military was considered to be the best in the world. While not leagues ahead of other armies in terms of technology at the time, the methods and tactics with which they waged war are still studied today, and technology such as the ballistae, siege tower, and catapults for siege warfare. One of the key successes also brought forth by the Roman military besides their advanced tactics and metal, was the near worship of the position of soldier. There was in fact a point in time where men were chosen by lot in order to serve for six continuous years. Masculinity was such a desired trait to the Romans that some historians have commented that it borders on homosexuality. The Romans’ origin story is even about two twin boys who were abandoned at birth and raised by a she-wolf only to exact their revenge on the king that tried to kill their mother. Thus, it was long viewed that service was a duty each man owed to Rome until the pay became good enough for people to consider the military a viable career. Besides that was the fact that service in the military granted you citizenship and with that came the right to vote in Rome. This army was massive in scale. The army was broken down into twenty-eight different legions each led by a legatus, with each legion consisting of around six thousand men strong and organized into cohorts based on their fighting capabilities. These legions had responsibilities besides straight fighting as well though. The me were often tasked with building fortifications and occasionally public works such as bridges for commercial use. The tactics used by this army, much like the Spartans of ancient Greece, are still studied today. These tactics relied on utilizing the mobility of horses, the resistance of a specific formation of men that could be altered for the situation to move around the battlefield that attacked the enemy lines, protected the missile launcher behind them from enemy attack, and relied heavily on flanking maneuvers that helped break enemy lines quite easily.
To support this army, a strong agricultural military was necessary for providing the soldiers with enough food to supply them around the massive empire. To fill this need, many slaves filled the fields of Rome, feeding its armies and its people. Slaves also filled the mines and performed many of the menial labor tasks that the Romans were not willing to perform such as working in the mines or building public works in order to sate the appetite of the masses for luxuries such as plumbing and the maintenance of roads in the empire. Slaves were also used as a form of entertainment, often pleasing the crowds with feat of strength and cunning in the famous gladiator arenas, fighting in bloody mortal combat with other slaves of the arena. These slaves were equipped with very little armor and a menagerie of devastating weapons meant to maim teir opponents, though they often were forced to face animals such as lions besides their peers in combat. Once a victor had been decided on the field of battle, the emperor, who was often in attendance, would pass judgment on the gladiators to determine if they had provided enough entertainment to remain alive. Unfortunately, the practice of keeping and maintaining these slaves was often a precarious perch upon which the Romans sat, sometimes metaphorically falling off into the slave revolts. While these revolts damaged much of the economy of Rome during the period of its existence the well-organized Roman army quickly put down the revolts.
The key to all of Rome’s successes, and admittedly many of its failures, lie in Rome itself as a strong centralized government. While not under the leadership of one of Rome’s many prominent dictators, a form of democracy existed and it was expected of men that they should partake in the political process if they had access to it. Many…