Roman Empire


The beginning of Rome is born with its foundation in 753 before our time and was carried out by the twin brothers Romulus and Remus on the banks of the Tiber river. The city gradually grew and filled with wealth until it became the most advanced city ​​in the world. The crisis that the empire suffered occurred during the 3rd century , when the Persian Empire arose, which, taking advantage of the weakness of the Roman army , produced important defeats to the Roman armies.


What was the fall of the Roman Empire?

The fall of the Western Roman Empire was a stage of decay in which that part of Rome lost authority to exercise its dominion and the territory was then divided into several successor political entities.


What was the fall of the Roman Empire?

When referring to the fall of the Roman Empire so generally we are referring to the fall of the Roman Empire in the West , since the East managed to survive many more years. His fall was based on the loss of authority at the time when the empire was divided into provinces that had their own laws and tributes , which caused the emperor to lose authority.


Historic context

The historical context that originated the crisis of the Lower Roman Empire is mainly due to two reasons, one was the barbarism of the Germanic peoples who had managed to infiltrate little by little into the Roman Empire, and secondly, because of the adoption of Christianity as the official religion , due to the deterioration of paganism. However, many Roman sources indicate that contemporary Romans knew of the crisis situation in which they were immersed, even before Christianity .



The prelude to the fall of the empire was the sack of Rome that took place on August 24, 410. This sack was carried out by the Visigoths and it was the first time that Rome had fallen to an enemy. This looting caused great shock in Roman society.


The Roman Senate lost what little control it still had, producing many riots among its troops, in addition to epidemics and wars, the number of inhabitants decreased considerably. There was also an increase in social divisions , abuse of power and Christianity emerged .


  • The High Empire : there is a dynastic succession of power that was interrupted by the civil war in 68. This first period of crisis was overcome by the Flavians . The absolute power that Rome had weakened over time.
  • The Lower Empire:  there were a series of struggles when Constantine became the sole emperor of the West. Christianity was instituted as the official religion of the Empire and the capital of the empire was transferred to the ancient city of Byzantium.

End of the war

The true end of the war came when Constantinople fell into the hands of the Ottomans on May 29, 1453. The siege had lasted more than a month and Mehmed II managed to make the city his own.

Peace treaties

During the fall of the Roman Empire no peace treaties were signed.


Among the main characteristics we mention:

  • The Senate began to lose what little power it had in its hands.
  • There were constant riots in the troops.
  • There were a lot of epidemics .
  • The wars caused a decrease of the inhabitants .
  • There was great insecurity in the cities due to invasions by the barbarians.
  • There was less trade and there was a shortage of the cities.
  • The state collected fewer taxes .

Causes of the fall of the Roman Empire

The main causes of the fall of the Roman Empire were the following:

  • There was a decline in values and morale , there was a waste of money at lavish parties, excess liquor and entertainment in the Roman coliseums .
  • There were many public health and environmental problems . There were lead pipes and only the rich had access to water.
  • It was poisoning by lead also to cause death, caused diseases that spread to the Roman nobility.
  • There was a poor development of technology as scientific achievements were limited to engineering and public services.
  • Rome’s economy suffered from inflation and the flow of gold from the new territories began to slow.
  • Economic expenses had been given senseless to have luxurious goods.
  • There was urban decay.
  • The Roman Empire was culturally divided as there was a Latin and a Greek empire.
  • There were many invasions by the barbarians .
  • The military spending was too high.
  • The adoption of Christianity took place softening the Romans.
  • There was great political corruption .


Among the consequences that the fall of the Roman Empire brought with it, we mention the following:

The stability of Christianity

The stability of Christianity was based on the strength of the Roman Empire , and when it fell, many wondered if Christianity would decline. Then the popes took a more dominant form of leadership and St. Augustine wrote his work The City of God , where he explained that Christianity was a religious institution that did not depend on any earthly power to survive.

Survival of the East

Constantinople survived as the center of the Byzantine Empire , the walls of Rome were impressive, but Theodosius felt they were too weak and built huge double walls to defend Constantinople.

Dominion of the tribes and hordes

The local populations formed immense uncivilized hordes , there were famines, conflicts , wars and other emergencies that needed control. In Europe , the Visigoths, the Franks and the Slavs dominated the inland areas of the Mediterranean .

The time of the kings

Europe realized that constant migration and looting would not sustain their existence forever, and they had to develop more organized social forms of life. First the lords and then the kings, priests and bishops had a leadership role and the kingdoms became the feudal system .


Among the most important characters who participated in the fall of the Roman Empire were:

  • Marcus Aurelius Cleander
  • Lucio Aurelio Comfortable Antonino better known as Comfortable
  • Marcus Didius Severus Julian known as Julian I
  • Annia Aurelia Galeria Lucila eldest daughter of Emperor Marcus Aurelius
  • Marcus Aurelius nicknamed the Wise who was Roman Emperor
  • Gaius Pescenius Niger pretender to the throne of the Roman Empire


The main importance of the fall of the Roman Empire is that it gave rise to the beginning of the Middle Ages in the world.

The fall of the Roman Empire in popular culture

In popular culture we can find movies like:

Some movies that have been shot about the fall of the Roman Empire are:

  • The fall of the Roman Empire
  • Ben Hur
  • The Last Legion
  • Spartacus
  • Gladiator

Some books have also been written :

  • The Fall of the Roman Empire by Peter Heather
  • The Fall of the Roman Empire by Samuel Bronston and Anthony Mann
  • Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon

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