Site Loader

There were many great empires. The main thing is
that every empire has several periods of existence. They are the period of
genesis, the period of prosperity, and the period of decline. The Roman Empire
is associated with all these stages. It was the most powerful territory of that
time. However, this state also faced a range of difficulties that led to the
fall of the Roman Empire. Although, there are still no definite data about
reasons for the decay of Rome many theories concerning the fall of the Roman
Empire have formed rooting from the state of the economy, the social decline,
and the religious aspect. Indeed, it is necessary to briefly overview the main
reasons in order to find out the main aspects of the Roman Empire’s decline.

it is important to provide some information about the economic aspect of the
Western Roman Empire. Actually, the probable reasons of the Roman Empire’s fall
may be attributed to “a general, progressive, economic decline that occurred in
the ancient world from the third century to the fifth” (Cipolla 19). This regression
was comprised of poor production of goods, low efficiency of the labor force,
high taxes, and difficulties in goods transportation from distant provinces.
The slaveholding system appeared to be disastrous for the lower classes of
Roman society. The main factor was that it was easier and cheaper for a person
of wealth to keep slaves rather than hire free people from the lower classes (Cipolla
21). As a result, free labor wages were kept to a minimum and it was difficult
for large groups of people to be employed and provide for their families with basic
necessities to survive, resulting in disloyalty to the Empire.

We Will Write a Custom Essay Specifically
For You For Only $13.90/page!

order now

In addition, there
appeared a necessity for the rulers of the Western Roman Empire to raise taxes
in order to provide an army and the capital of the state with essential
resources (Gibbon 43). Numerous civil wars and wars of conquest emptied coffers
of the state, and it became more difficult for Rome to get necessary resources
from distant provinces. As stated in the prompt, “provincial markets for Roman
goods were lost to provincial and external competition, leading to a trade
deficit.” The road system in the Roman Empire was highly developed.
Nonetheless, it took a lot of time to deliver resources from the distant
colonies or relocate military forces quickly across the territories of the
whole empire. Thus, there appeared necessity to divide the Roman Empire into
the Western and the Eastern parts. As a result, the Eastern Roman Empire was
able to normalize goods supply in their region. However, there was no
improvement in the economy of the Western Roman Empire. Thus, the western rulers
decided to solve economic problems by raising taxes. Consequently, it caused
complaints in the Roman population. According to John P. Adams, as stated in
the prompt, “the productive class were bled dry by the depreciation of currency
and by confiscatory taxation.” For this reason, the size of the Roman army had
been shrinking constantly by the time of the Western Roman Empire’s fall
(Gibbon 137).

the poor state of the Roman Empire was associated with social decline. In fact,
there was unfair distribution of wealth in Roman society (Jones 270). For this
reason, there emerged the financial gap between aristocracy and lower classes.
It should be mentioned that it was rather difficult for the Western Roman
Empire to control all its territories, and it caused financial crisis in Roman
economy. However, aristocracy had enough resources and privileges to avoid
bankruptcy and spend great amounts of money on entertainment. Civil wars and
usurpation of power by the emperors were the reasons for aristocracy to be
concentrated on their own affairs, which weakened the strength of the Empire. Aristocracy
had no desire to participate in the political life of the state allowing the
lower classes to participate in state affairs. “Thereby diluting the value of
the experience and brains which the aristocracy possessed,” as stated in the
prompt. Additionally, the financial situation of the middle and lower classes were
rather catastrophic in period of decline. Slave labor, high taxes, and numerous
military conflicts were the factors that caused financial crisis of these
classes. Moreover, it was difficult for the Western Roman Empire to recruit
local people into the army. Thus, there appeared a necessity to recruit mercenaries
from the Barbarian tribes (Jones 221). Obviously, it caused the weakness of
famous Roman army. The main thing was that discipline and high moral principles
were the factors that helped the Roman army to be the most powerful in the
world. However, recruitment of the Barbarian tribes led to decline of the Roman
army. As listed in the prompt, “easy living made the Romans soft, permitting
the barbarians to overrun them with ease.”

Post Author: admin


I'm Erica!

Would you like to get a custom essay? How about receiving a customized one?

Check it out