HIST Lecture #9 9-20

HIST Lecture #9 9-20 - Lecture #9 9/20/11 The Rise and...

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Lecture #9 9/20/11 The Rise and Decline of the Pax Romana Polybius suggests the decline of the Roman Republic and points out flaws. Some of the things that caused problems for the Republic also troubled the Empire, but for the most parts, these two periods are completely separate. Historians argue that all great powers go through a similar cycle and face an inevitable decline. In the 1980s, Paul Kennedy wrote a best seller called “The Rise and Fall of Great Powers). The last 50 years are often called the pax americana , and U.S. faces many troubles, much like the Romans did. Why did Rome decline? You can make the argument that it didn’t, it just transformed into many different things. The decline of the Roman Empire is a case of multi-causality. There were many reasons to which part of the decline could be attributed. The Height of the Roman Empire (Pax Romana) Augustus created the beginnings of an imperial institution, but kept Senate and other democratic aspects in place. The princeps kept al the power, however, One thing Augustus didn’t do was set up a system of succession. Tiberius, Coligula, Claudus, and Nero all ruled from 14-68 CE and were bad rulers. Nero is famous for fiddling while Rome burned (not true). This appearance of morality and Republican rule that Augustus wanted to maintain began to erode and autocratic rule took over. The Flavian dynasty was a succession of military rulers. With Domitian’s death, there were the Five “Good” Emperors. Nerva, the first one, worked once again with the Senate, and created an orderly manner of succession. Find someone in the Senate who is competent and good, and then adopt that person as your son. This was the period when the Roman
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This note was uploaded on 02/27/2012 for the course HIST 151 taught by Professor Hunziker during the Fall '07 term at UNC.

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HIST Lecture #9 9-20 - Lecture #9 9/20/11 The Rise and...

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