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Lecture 9

Lecture 9 - Roman Civilization

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Adriana Brook

CLA160 Lecture 9 JULY25/2011 Roman Civilization (ca. 4000 BCE – 337 CE) - 3 periods: Kings, Republic, and Empire Geography - Mountains called the Apennines • The Alps in the north, create a barrier between the Italian peninsula and the rest of the world • This results in Italy’s limited contact with others via land • Only a few places were liveable; most of these areas have rivers in them - Western coast attracts people • 3 liveable places: (1)Etruria has the Arno River (2)Latium has the Tiber and Liris Rivers (3)Campania has the Volturnus River - Climate more moderate and comfortable in the west than the extreme of the east (think: Vancouver climate) - Lots of harbours in the West - Italy surrounded by seas: (1) Tyrrhenian Sea (2) Adriatic Sea (3) Ionian Sea (4) Sicilian Sea - Seas makes it easy for people to travel • They have easy access to the Mediterranean Sea • In the beginning, the people didn’t have access to travel routes of Syrians, Babylonians, and others, because the west coast of Italy was difficult to get to using the route between Sicily and Italy, and it takes a while to get to if going around Sicily - Sea, mountains and rivers influenced the way they developed and interact with the outside world - 2000 BCE: Italian Bronze Age - 900 BCE: Italian Iron Age Contact with Others - Phoenicians • Greeks borrowed their alphabets • Known for their trade • 800 BCE: arrived at the Italian Peninsula (end of the Dark Ages in Greece) • Set up trading posts: Cumae, Naples, and Pithecusa • In Pithecusa, first writings were found inside pottery - Greeks • Located in what is known as Magna Graecia – culturally Greek • Tarentum is a center for manufacturing and was largely populated by Spartans • Thurii – also called “Sybaris-Thurii;” Sybaris means excessive luxury – populated by Athenians who were thought to have lived in luxury • Syracuse – populated by Corinthians - Gauls/Celts • From the area of France • Settled around the Po River Valley (called the Cis-Alpine Gaul) , as well as on the other side of the Alps known as the Trans-Alpine Gaul - Etruscans • Settled north of what is Rome CLA160 Lecture 9 JULY25/2011 • 650 to 450 BCE • Premier civilization in Italy • Expanded into the Po River valley, Latium, and Campania • Influenced by Greek and Phoenicians • Has their own Etruscan language • Rich society (i.e. grains, flax seeds, etc) and lots of resources (i.e. iron) – they also have timber • Traded raw materials as well as finished goods • Has a fully developed political system: monarchy and then led by a league of kings • Elements of Etruscan Kingship is evident in Rome (i.e. Purple robe worn by Senators; Fasces were bundles with axe head, which symbolizes authority, carried by lictors who accompany the magistrates • Archaeological evidence of the civilization: tomb paintings Depicting feasting in a symposium-like place; showing husband and wife, male and female dining and drinking together – something that doesn’t occur in a Greek symposium Depicted Etruscans playing sports: wrestling, boxing, acrobatics, etc Religious systems: reading of omens (i.e. flight of birds) - 600 BCE: The peak of the Etruscan civilization - 6 and gradually into the 5 century BCE: conflict with neighbouring places and lost in battles • The Etruscans gradually shrink at the same time that the Romans were expanding 8 century to 509 BCE 753 BCE: founding of Rome - Rome located cl
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