The ancient Romans adopted every good idea that they saw. If other people were doing something better then the Romans, the Romans changed to do it the better way. They copied anything if they thought it was good. A perfect example of this would be the myths of the Greek gods.
The Romans heard the myths of the Greeks and loved the stories so much that they took these stories and changed the names of the Gods and made them Roman gods. The Romans had their own religious beliefs, they just added these to them.
Another idea they may have taken was lipstick and cosmetics. Many other people had painted themselves or used dyes or tattoos. But who actually used cosmetics to enhance natural appearance? Some people say the Romans, others say the Indus Valley civilizations.
There were many occurrences like that. The Romans never gave any other civilization credit for inventions. According to them, everything was invented in Rome.
Since the Romans were so good at copying other peoples ideas what did they actually invent?
- Architecture: The ancient Romans developed many new techniques for buildings and construction of all types including concrete, Roman roads, Roman arches, and aqueducts.
- Public Health Programs: The Romans were great believers in healthy living. They made sure that all the people of Rome were able to get medical help.
- Public Welfare: The Romans also believed that all Romans should have food and shelter so they developed welfare programs for the poor.
- Latin: The Romans spread across Europe, Southwest Asia, and North Africa bringing their traditions and their language. man language (Latin), the root of all the romance languages including English, French, and Spanish.
- Religion: The Catholic faith, which kept learning alive after the fall of the Western Roman Empire.
- Roman Law/Politics, including the law that states a person is innocent until proven guilty (from the Twelve Tables), and propaganda campaigns including coinage with the current emperor's picture on it, to remind everyone who was in charge of the empire.
- Literature, Theatre, Art: Satire, which was a loud and rude sort of sarcastic approach to comic theatre, works of literature including Virgil's Aeneid, realistic statues, ornate jewelry, masks, mosaics.
- Customs, including the use of rings to denote friendship, engagements, and weddings, and the use greenery to decorate during winter holidays, and other holiday customs.
- Clothing: Socks (called soccus by the ancient Romans) worn by both women and men. Shoes, all kinds of shoes, including the hobnailed shoe that made such a scary racket when worn by the common soldier - along with shoe construction that adjusted for left foot, right foot variance in shape, which made wearing any shoes a lot more comfortable. And a bunch of neat hats.
- Games: Many board and ball games including knuckleball (jacks) and hoops.