For nearly 500 Years, Rome was an Empire Illustration

Rome Becomes an Empire

Government was very different during the Empire than it was under the Republic. People still elected Senators. But Senators had no power. The current emperor could take away power from the Senate or give power to the Senate. Senators could mostly only advise. The Assembly was gone. It was never a building. The Assembly was the right of the common man to assembly in the forum and vote. Vote for what? The Assembly did not pick the emperor, and the emperor was all-powerful.  The emperor made all laws and passed all taxes.

During the 500 years that Rome was an Empire, there were lots of emperors. Augustus was the first emperor. There would be 140 more, some good, and some bad. Some took power by force. Some inherited the job from their fathers. Some emperors died by natural causes. Some were killed in wars. Some were murdered.

There were some improvements. Under the Empire, women received more rights. Massive public service programs were created to help the poor. There were many festival paid for by the rich. Huge entertainment centers were built that offered free admission to events.

Some things stayed the same. Families stayed together in the same home.  Romans honored the elderly, The rich remained rich and the poor remained poor.

Somehow, in spite of its many ups and downs, the Roman Empire survived for nearly 500 years.

Rome as an Empire - animated video

Improvements under the Empire

Status of Women

Roman Emperors

Pax Romana





Holidays & Festivals

The Grand Pantheon






The Rise of Christianity

Emperor Diocletian Splits the Empire in Half

Barbarians/Rome Falls

Maps & Timelines