Romans, prefer other ancient peoples take it spoils indigenous their beat enemies. In the early period of Rome’s development the most crucial spoils that Romans took from their adversaries was land. Rome hardly ever had enough land to carry out for every one of her citizens. Lock were no seafarers, for this reason they couldn’t settle the problems of floor shortage through emigration or profession like, say the Athenians. So, roman settlements had actually to be in Italy, and that meant that they had actually to take it land far from some various other state to achieve that goal. Roman political leaders knew that they might relieve population pressures in ~ Rome by fighting to gain much more land, so politics leaders, that were also, you remember, army leaders proactively sought wars.

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But economic motives weren’t the only ones. The causes of growth were more complicated than merely wars for land. Conditions in Italy in the early on Republic made it nearly impossible because that Rome or any other state to avoid war. There to be literally thousands of small, independent states in Italy, all contending with one one more for minimal resources. Many of this states needed land, and they could only obtain it by taking it from your neighbors. So, war ended up being a regular feature of roman inn life in ~ a very early phase in its development. Roman virtues were warrior virtues that were suitable to farmers and warriors. In order to acquire those virtues, males needed to fight wars. Thus, one significant benefit of expansion was glory! If a consul winner a an excellent battle his prestige increased. He and also his loved ones would find it much easier to success election to workplaces in the future and also would be given greater armed forces responsibilities. Even usual soldiers earned an excellent prestige once they had fought in crucial Roman victory. They got land and a share in the spoils of war. Thus, the Romans were constantly ready and also even passionate to fight, if they to be given any type of reason to perform so through some various other state. And also conditions were such the reasons might usually it is in found.

Another necessary reason because that Roman development is additionally related to the frequency of warfare in the early duration of Rome’s development. Romans were offered to viewing their “next-door neighbors” together potential threats to the protection of the Republic. As Rome broadened in Italy, she bumped into yet another quarrelsome ar that wanted her land. Hence, the unwritten presumption of Roman foreign policy became “every neighborhood is yet one more potential threat.”

Rome’s earliest conquests can be neatly divided into three components -- the conquest of main Italy, the occupation of northern italy, and also the conquest of southerly Italy. We start with main Italy. Native 500-400 Rome fought primarily against hill tribes and nearby cities in central Italy. Usually they did therefore to safeguard themselves. These people or these various other cities raided Rome, and also Roman soldiers would go the end and try to conquer them. And to make certain that they would not be threatened again, Rome would work out some of her very own citizens amongst these people. In other words, the roman citizens would obtain land, work out down, and kind communities of their own or intermarry v the locals. What this means is that Roman settlements are now farther away from Rome proper, and also they need to be protected too – which method more expansion.

In the 390s another threat appeared, this time native the north. People of Celts – referred to as Gauls – started to raid into main Italy, and the Romans organized resistance among the other Italian urban to this raids. Through 350 BC the Romans were able to defeat the Gauls and also establish your authority over northern Italy.

In 282 B.C. The Romans got an very nice from several of the old Greek urban in southerly Italy to help them in resisting one of the lesser Hellenistic kingdoms, that of Epirus. The Romans i agreeed to carry out that assistance and fought versus the king, called Pyrrhus, until 275 once they not only beat that king however essentially brought every one of southern Italy under your influence. So, by 275 BC the Romans controlled every one of Italy.


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By 275 the Romans controlled every one of Italy, and in 264 began the an excellent wars that allowed Rome to end up being master the the Mediterranean. The most necessary of these battles were called the Punic wars, which come in three parts. The very first lasted indigenous 264 come 241 B.C., and the second from 218 to 201 B.C. The 3rd led to the destruction of Carthage in 146 B.C.

These battles were fought versus the city that Carthage, one old Phoenician colony (Punic is one more word for Phoenician) on the northern shore of Africa. In 264 Carthage to be a lot choose Rome. It to be powerful, controlled a lot of territory, consisting of Spain by the way, and also wanted more. The factor for the war was actually fairly simple. Rome and also Carthage to be the two huge powers in the main Mediterranean. It simply seemed inescapable that these two huge powers would pertained to blows.


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In the first war, many of the fighting took ar on the sea approximately Sicily. The Romans were at a disadvantage due to the fact that they had actually no navy. However they created several big fleets when they saw it to be necessary. They obtained ship designs from their Italian Greek allies, and probably to work them together rowers as well. They then modified their ships to revolve sea battles into land battles. Roman inn loses were tremendous, yet they ultimately won through sheer perseverance.

The chief attribute of this second Punic war was that the Carthaginian military was commanded by an additional one the those army geniuses the the ancient world, Hannibal. Hannibal chose to take it the battle to the Romans. Hannibal led his forces into Italy in 218 BC and also proceeded come beat the Romans in fight after battle. However Hannibal could never achieve two tasks that were vital to loss Rome. He can never take the city itself, and he might never obtain the other Italian urban to give up their roman inn allies. Those plans we talked about of giving lots of rights and also independence to the Italian cities really paid turn off in the Punic Wars.


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Every time the Romans dealt with a fight with Hannibal they lost. Therefore they chose to harass his military as it marched up and also down Italy. In other words, castle wore that out. Then in 204 BC, a Roman military under a well known commander through the name of Scipio Africanus landed in Africa to threaten Carthage itself. Hannibal was forced to leave Italy and defend his home. At the fight of Zama, close to Carthage, the Romans beat him for the first time. Hannibal fled come the Hellenistic kingdoms of the East and Carthage surrendered. Rome was currently the chief power of the central Mediterranean.

After Zama, the king the Macedonia, Philip V, invited Hannibal to his court. Hannibal assured Philip the the Romans had actually expended so numerous men and also resources beating Carthage that Philip can pick up some territory. Top top Hannibal’s advice, Philip began to put pressure on the Greeks that complained to Rome.

The Romans placed Scipio in charge. Scipio elevated an army, and, in what is referred to as the 2nd Macedonian War, 200-196 B.C., the crushed Philip. The Punic Wars had not in truth weakened Rome but given that a large, competent fighting force led by truly able commanders.

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After the Romans beat Philip, the Seleucid king, Antiochus III, thought, “Hey, the Antigonids room weak, so that gives me an chance to broaden my strength in Greece.” (Hannibal was now with him also -- he would commit self-destruction in 183 BC) So, in 192 BC he began to annoy Rome’s Greek friends. The Romans request Scipio to walk to job-related again, and he beat the Seleucid military (The Syrian War, 192-189BC).