World History Homework Four- Model

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World History Homework Four
Instructor: Andy Schlafly

Read the lecture.

You can substitute in a question from honors into your regular assignment, if you are not in honors. You can also substitute in a question raised from class or the lecture.

1. Who is your favorite Roman emperor, and why?

One of my favorite Roman emperors is Vespasian because he broke out of the norm of having only patricians govern the people. He proved that a common man was as capable as a wealthy man to rule Rome. (Olivia)
Hadrian. He was one of the five good emperors, he helped keep the Pax Romana, he built up Rome’s defenses, including the famous Hadrian’s Wall, and made the wise decision to abandon an economically wasteful area of land. (Michelle)
Justinian was probably my favorite Roman Emperor (eastern half) because he created the Justinian Code that was used for over 900 years and proved very effective. (Danielle)

2. Describe what the Roman Republic and the Roman Empire were, including approximate dates.

The Roman Republic was established in 509 B.C. and began with the overthrow of the Roman monarchy. The Roman Republic was formed to be a country without a King or an Emperor.
The Roman Empire was the post-Republican phase of the ancient Roman civilization, it lasted from 27 B.C. to A.D. 476. The Roman Empire received its name from the western capital, Rome, which was the first city of the empire. (Amanda)

3. Compare and contrast the Roman Empire in the West with the Byzantine Empire.

First of all the Byzantine Empire was more powerful. It also managed to last much longer than the Western Roman Empire, for almost another millennium. They were both sacked by Attila but the western was eventually destroyed while the Byzantine Empire first paid him tribute, and then hired his soldiers as mercenaries after Attila's death. Byzantium was also still the birthplace of many powerful rulers and generals, General Aetius, known as, "The last True Roman" was one of the many people that rose out of the Byzantine empire, whereas the western empire was in decline and depended on the Eastern Empire to help salvage any power. (Joey M.)
The Western Roman Empire had been ruled by Constantine, who converted to Christianity, then made it the official religion of Rome. He then went on to fight the ruler of the eastern half in A.D. 314. Constantine defeated the East, killing its emperor, Licinius, uniting both halves into one very powerful Roman Empire .... The Byzantine Empire was always the wealthier of the two, and Western Rome declined to some extent because of economic reasons, while the Eastern half fell to an attack during a weakened complex governmental system. (Jonathan R.)
The Roman Empire was built on a system of spoils to fuel its economic growth. The spoils system is a very hard type of economy requiring lots of power and military might, which often leads to corruption. The Byzantine Empire was a more Christian based empire, being founded firmly in what is today known as Greek Orthodoxy. ..." (Will)

4. Comment on the significance of the Roman language, Latin.

Latin was undoubtedly an influence in the success of the Roman Empire. Aside from its own qualities, such as being able to use few words to express complex or powerful ideas, it also served as a uniting force of Roman culture, and perhaps most importantly, the language of the Law. The fact that Latin remains a prestigious language today is a testament to its linguistic and cultural strength. (Addison)
Language is a very important part of a civilization. It enabled peace, government, the spread of idea, and prosperity. Latin was Rome’s jewel. It enabled complex concepts to be explained simply. Latin was such a great language, that it is even used today in science and law. (Leonard)
The Roman language Latin is the basis of almost all languages in Europe. French, Spanish, and Italian all have direct ties to Latin. Even English has many roots from Latin.The Countries that were occupied by the roman army all have many Latin roots. Germany however does not have many ties with Latin because the Romans were never able to conquer all of that country. (Isaac)

5. Explain what Pax Romana was. First of all, Pax Romana is Latin for "the Roman peace."

This was a period of peace in Rome under the "Five Good Emperors" from 27 B.C. to A.D. 180. The five emperors were: Nerva, Trajan (who ruled over more land than anyone), Hadrian (who built defensive walls), Antoninus Pius and Marcus Aurelius. (Jonathan R.)
Pax Romana was a time of peace that Rome had from invaders. During 27 B.C. to A.D. 180, it was a time of prosperity which occurred under the leadership of the Five Good Emperors. These emperors were chosen for their talent rather than who they knew. The Five Good Emperors built defensive walls, expanded the empire, and wrote philosophy. (Sandro)

6. Current events question: What about the decline of the Roman empire reminds you of the United States today? (Possibilities could be: in-fighting for government positions like the Illinois Senate seat, moral decay, economic decline, weakness to attack by foreign enemies, etc.)

As the Roman Empire, the United States starts to deteriorate due to moral decay and the controversy for positions with power. The United States is forgetting why foreigners came to settle this world. They came here to worship God freely without someone commanding them to do otherwise. This country was made up of the outcasts and the poor searching for a better life. They came here to be free from the corruption of morals and government in their own country, but now we have caught the disease and are contaminated with jealousy and hunger for power and not for God. The Roman Empire started with a group of outcasts who were willing to create a new empire so that they may have a new start, but as time went on the people engulfed themselves in their own spoils and not in work that results in progress. People are now looking for the easiest way to do things even though it may take less work from you it is more work in the end. (Veronika)
Many elements that caused the fall of Rome are, in some way or another, present in our country now. Most notably is economic crisis. Rome’s economic state declined as inflation occurred and money was sent to the East in trade, depleting the West of precious metal coinage. This situation is roughly comparable to a combination of the current economic crisis and the huge amount of trade with China, creating large amounts of debt. Related to this is the rising unemployment rate and the collapse of business. And when more people are out of work, less productive work gets done and the culture begins to devolve. Immoral entertainment, harsh taxes, unrest over foreign invasion, and other sentiments were both a cause and an effect in the decline of Rome, and to a lesser degree these sentiments may lead to decline in our country too. (However, while these similarities undeniably exist, I don’t believe that the United States will actually decline very much. I actually believe it will be greatly improved, see Essay:The Coming Fifth Great Awakening in America) (Addison)
We are currently in an economic crisis, which is similar to Rome’s economy before declining, and we have put the corrupt in power (like our President appointing people in power who get our tax money, but don’t pay theirs). Rome had tax collectors that overcharged its citizens and kept the money for itself- again, I’m seeing a similarity. (Danielle)

7. Challenging question (choose "a" or "b"):

(a) all of world history so far in this course can be attributed either to God paving the way for Jesus, or the devil creating obstacles for Him. Discuss.
God is the ultimate designer and coordinator of every historical event. He is the one who started history and He will be the one to end it. Everything that has ever happened in the universe is part of his plan. Everything in history can absolutely be attributed to God paving the way for Jesus, or the devil creating obstacles for Him. (Jenna N.)
Up to this point in world history, God had been paving the way for the birth of Christ. The Greeks established a common language throughout the world. The Romans build great roads to make traveling easier. (Nate)
(b) there should be an entire course taught about Christianity overcame the anti-Christian Roman empire. Discuss why.
An entire course on this subject would be very interesting! It would be extremely worthwhile for students to know what it was about Christianity that was so powerful and unwavering that overcame the anti-Christian Roman empire!In a day and age where Americans are fed lies like "All religions are OK" and "You can have multiple God's" and just theories that are basically disputing the importance of a religion with ONE God that man is forced to serve and be accountable to, it would be very helpful to see how Christianity prevailed above an anti-Christian empire as powerful as Rome! (Deborah B.)

H1. Do you agree that the Romans really lacked any understanding of an objective truth, as reflected by Pilate's response to Jesus at His trial? Please discuss.

I think they "knew" what the concept of truth was. They might not have understood the full meaning of the word. When Pilate asked, "what is truth?" he might have meant like, "what's the worth or use of truth?" or "what's truth here? Who uses it?" (Kara L.)

H2. Which was more influential, the Roman law or the Roman legions?

Roman law. Roman legions were very good for their time, but no one in this day and age would use them as their model. Roman law is the model that the U.S. is based off of. The Greek democracy was part of what inspired the U.S. government, but it was mostly the Romans. One of the improvements we made was to divide the legislature into two parts, the Senate and the House of Representatives. (Michelle)
Roman law was not as well thought or as influential as Rome’s armies. The Roman law was used primarily for roman citizens. More often people would be tried in the traditional courts of their region rarely going to the roman court. An example of this would be when Jesus was arrested. He was first brought before the Sanhedrin, and then only because they wanted to have him killed did they bring him before Pilate. (James)
The Roman legions were the most efficient and deadly fighting force in the ancient world; more than anything else, they made the Roman Empire what it was. Each legion, composed of 3,000-5,000 men, was a self-sufficient fighting force. Each legionary carried two days rations, sword, javelin, and shield, water, and a long pointed wooden pole which were set up around a camp as a palisade. Their discipline enabled them to crush enemy armies of barbarians even when greatly outnumbered. (Duncan)

H3. Discuss rights that Paul enjoyed as Roman citizen, rights not enjoyed by Jesus's other disciples.

As a Roman citizen Paul was given certain rights, one of which exempted him from whippings, which he received anyway. (Jenna S.)
The rights of a Roman citizen included the right to vote, to hold public office, to marry a Roman citizen, to sue in court, and not to be whipped or tortured or crucified. (Steven)

H4. Julius Caesar: a hero or a villain?

He came when Rome needed a strong government to reorganize the republic and strengthen the people's faith in the government." (Anthony)

H5. Discuss the Punic Wars, or any aspect of it (such as Hannibal's efforts).

The Punic Wars was a clash between two types of empire. The Carthaginian Empire was centered on Carthage, and all other states were tributary to the city of Carthage. The conquered states were required to supply tribute and soldiers to fight Carthage’s battles, which all resented. Rome, on the other hand, granted full non-citizen rights to the people groups they conquered, instead of treating them as subordinate nations. (Duncan)
Hannibal’s trek over the mountains was an amazing feat that help him win most of a Punic war. If he just had a few more men with him then he could have crushed Rome totally and history would have been changed forever. (Benjamin)

H6. Attila the Hun: discuss this remarkable person.

He was a superb military leader. His forces would use cavalry and could travel faster than any other military force. His soldiers would place raw meat between the saddle and the horse and when they traveled, the friction caused by the saddle and the horse would actually semi-cook the meat, thereby saving time when his forces were on the move. (John)
Attila the Hun was on of the most ruthless men the world has probably ever known. He is a prime example of God-given gifts put to bad use. He was a fearless fighter, a strategic genius, and a revered and feared man. Perhaps, though, his ruthlessness was part of God's plan to bring about the fall of the Roman Empire, as no other man would have had the courage to face the Roman legions, weak or not, in a fight to the death. ... Attila was what he was and will be forever known to history as the Hun who humbled the fury of Rome and extinguished its fire. (Jenna S.)