Questions tagged [ancient-rome]

Ancient Rome was a civilization centred around the city of Rome, that lasted from the 8th century BC to 476 AD (West); 1453 AD (East).

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Were Roman males ever named after their mothers?

We know that Roman men often named sons after them, and daughters were usually given the feminine form of their father's name. But are there any records or evidence that a Roman man was ever given the ...
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What evidence is there of the vision aids people used before the invention of eyeglasses in about 1286?

The Wikipedia article on glasses says ‘scattered evidence exists for use of vision aid devices in Greek and Roman times’ but only cites the example of Nero’s emerald. This article on Magnifying ...
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Similar names in ancient Rome

Praenomens in ancient Rome seemed to have been rather limited, especially by the time of the empire. There must've been cases where close friends or cousins and the like would've had the same ...
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Could women make contracts in ancient Rome? [closed]

I'm writing a story and the main character is a wealthy widow who runs the estate for her rather lazy son. Could women in ancient Rome (specifically the 3rd Century Empire) legally make contracts, or ...
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What Was The Economy Like in Ancient Rome for the Working-Class? [closed]

As a current member of the working-class living in the United States, I am wondering what was the economy like during Ancient Rome, particularly during the time of Jesus Christ. As you probably know, ...
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Did Roman women wear underwear? How did it look?

I must admit I have no expertise in history. My question is inspired by "Rome" TV series (the authors claim that everyday life was shown with relative historical accuracy) and it's about Roman panties....
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Why was Roman painting so inferior to the sculpture and architecture of the same period?

Compared to sculpture, surviving examples of Roman painting are relatively few. Most of them are in the form of frescoes or mosaics. Still, what gives? While Roman sculptures and reliefs are highly ...
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What is the source for “The right to murder family members ended in the first century BC”

The right to murder family members ended in the first century BC, although, even then, they kept a few exceptions. Now, the law said, fathers could only murder their sons if they’ve been convicted ...
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How did Roman law change between Justinian and Basil II?

What were the ways in which Roman law changed between under the rule of Justinian I (with his Corpus Juris Civilis and the rest of his Legal Order) and under the rule of Basil II? I am interested in ...
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Where did the Roman money involved in the spice and luxury trade end up?

In the book "The Roman Empire and the Indian Ocean" by McLaughlin, which is a very interesting read, he states that annual bullion going to buy luxuries in India was around 50-100 million sesterces ...
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Why did Romans use the sesterce in written monetary records when the coin itself was so rarely used?

In the vast majority of cases, Roman writers and government officials recorded amounts of money (money donated, value of items bought/sold, amount given in wills, etc.) in sesterces. Given that the ...
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Was hitchhiking common in ancient Rome?

I am writing a story about a soldier who survived an ambush and he hid several days. Then he walked to a village. While he was on the way (walking on a road) he saw a caravan ... So my question is: ...
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Who was the first woman to be made a god by Rome's senate?

Cleopatra, consort to Julius Caesar was worshiped in Egypt as a living embodiment of the Egyptian goddess Isis, but she was never recognized as such by the Senate of Rome. Julius Caesar was ...
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Why didn't the ancients produce purple dye via admixture?

A great deal of prestige is attached to the colour purple - the hue of bishops and emperors alike - and, if you've read a little about the ancient world, you'll probably have heard the story ...
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What actually happened in Greek and Roman temples of healing?

Greeks first had temples of healing under Apollo, and when Apollo as the god of healing was displaced by Asclepius, these temples ended up as asclepeion. The Romans adopted this idea of temples for ...
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Who was this Roman General/figure of authority who, on his deathbed, named these two regrets?

In my undergrad I took a Roman History/Culture class and remember the professor mentioning someone who died naming two regrets: He once told a secret to a woman He once spent a day idle/doing nothing ...
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What happened to the coins in ancient Greece and Rome when monarchs changed?

Were there any instances in the ancient periods of Greece and Rome, where the succeeding monarchs/state leaders refused to acknowledge the coins issued by the preceding monarch, i.e., decreed the ...
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Why did the original Carthage never become a Roman city?

Carthage fell to the might of Rome, I think it was, three times in total. They were completely defeated and accepted some pretty horrible terms of surrender. And yet they maintained their self ...
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How did the Romans salute the Republic?

Are there any known phrases that were used by Romans to celebrate or cheer for the Republic? I've searched for some phrases I came up with, like Ave Res Publica, and some other derivatives I've ...
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Are there the depictions of horsemen in Roman republic other than on the coins?

I wonder if there are depictions of horsemen who sit on the horses, with the horses that have two fore (front) hooves up in the air other than on the coins made in the time when Rome was a republic. ...
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What is the origin of “Crévier's supplement” in William A McDevitte's 1850 translation of Livy's Ab Urbe Condita Libri?

The 1850 translation (by William A McDevitte) of Book 41 of Livy's Ab Urbe Condita Libri (available on the Perseus website at http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.02.0149%...
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How did the Druids learn the Greek language by the time of Caesar's campaign in Gaul?

In Latin class, we are translating parts of Caesar's Commentaries on the Gallic War. One thing that struck me as odd is how Caesar describes the customs of the Gauls, especially in Book 6, where he ...
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Are there any exemplars of the 'trope of the exiled poet' prior to CE 8?

For a class of mine I'm writing a paper on Ovid's Tristia and Epistulae ex Ponto, where I argue that underneath Ovid's lamentation of his exile and praise for Augustus, he immortalizes himself as the ...
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Are there any Vandal or Goth relics or monuments in Rome?

The Vandals and Goths ruled Rome for several years after the fall of the empire. Did they leave any relics, monuments or buildings that can still be seen?
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Why didn't Hannibal attack Rome after the Battle of Cannae?

Hannibal Barca defeated 8 Roman legions in the Battle of Cannae. At that time Carthage also had control over Hispania. Why did Hannibal not seize Rome at that time?
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Were there any Roman villas in Britain which were used rather than destroyed after the Romans left?

As noted in the post Are there any ideas as to what the English landscape was like before the arrival of the Angles? , the infrastructure and buildings which the Romans left behind gradually fell ...
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Could women be crucified under Roman law?

Were women eligible for crucifixion in Roman society? I found plenty of sources saying something along the lines of "women and Roman citizens were exempt" but also found some sources saying women ...
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Why, in ancient battles, did being encircled mean defeat?

Why, in ancient battles, did being encircled mean defeat? The classic example of that is the Battle of Cannae, where 80,000 Roman infantry were surrounded by 40,000 Carthaginian infantry. Every ...
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Were Trojans the ancestors of the Romans?

Such an hypothesis should be possible to test. I know that graveyards dating back to the pre Roman civilization of Latium can be found : those who allegedly were the descendants of Trojans. ...
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What did Tacitus write about Nero and the Great Fire of Rome 64AD?

I have always been fascinated by the history of ancient Rome and this is one of the topics I always wanted to know a little bit more about. The rumor about Nero himself giving the order to burn down ...
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What did the Jews during the First Jewish-Roman War know about other anti-Roman revolts?

The first Jewish-Roman War started in 66 CE. When I read about it, it sounds so futile: you have a group of zealots (literally and figuratively) revolting against a professional army from the period's ...
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Were slaves allowed to use the Roman baths?

Or to quip: could slaves be patrons of baths?
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What ancient Roman(s) wished houses were made of transparent walls?

What ancient Roman(s) wished houses were made of transparent walls? source:St. Joseph Cafasso's The Priest: The Man of God: His Dignity and Duties p. 50: a Roman of ancient times wished his house ...
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What would the Arch of Titus have looked like painted?

The Arch of Titus is a famous attraction in Rome, built by the Roman Emperor Domitian in 82 CE, in honor of the great military conquest of his older brother, Titus. Perhaps the most famous part of ...
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Did germophobia exist in classical antiquity?

I know nothing of the cleaning habits of the Greeks, but about Rome Mary Beard (2015) says that doctors knew that going to the public baths with an open wound would likely result in gangrene, so it ...
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Was the use of imperial nicknames in ancient Rome meant as an insult?

A few Roman emperors are commonly known by nicknames. I'm thinking specifically of the Emperors Gaius (Caligula) and Antoninus (Caracalla.) These nicknames were never in official use, at least while ...
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What is the difference between the Ancient Greek religion and the Ancient Roman religion?

What is the difference between the Ancient Greek religion and the Ancient Roman religion? My question is about, not cultural differences, but conceptual differences." Wikipedia doesn't compare them. ...
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Are there examples in ancient history of honor killing?

Honor killing, most often, the murder of a woman or girl by male family members. The killers justify their actions by claiming that the victim has brought dishonor upon the family name or prestige. ...
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Would a Syrian King have worn the toga after the Edict of Caracalla?

As you may know, the Edict of Caracalla granted citizenship to all freeborn citizens of the Roman Empire. I'm writing a novel set several decades after this edict, and one of the characters is a ...
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Was it illegal to blaspheme God in Antioch in 360.-410.?

We know that the Roman Empire became a Christian state. Was it illegal to blaspheme God in Antioch in 360.-410.? What punishment was prescribed (if it was illegal)? If it was punishable, who could ...
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Did the Romans have writing desks?

I am just rekindling my interest in Ancient Rome, and reading Rome:Its people, life and customs by Ugo Enrico Paoli. He goes into considerable detail about tables, but only dining tables. There is a ...
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After the fall of the Roman Empire, where did their armor go? Was it used by any dark ages forces?

It is my understanding that the plate armor manufactured in the time after the fall of Rome was far inferior to anything that the Romans used in their legions. (Of course, if I am wrong on any of this ...
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Did ancient Romans have a religion that involved a “fish hat”?

This question is related to the Mesopotamian god "Dagon" and how he may have been represented in ancient Rome. According to some sources, gods and goddesses that were worshiped in ancient Mesopotamia ...
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Why didn't the Roman Princeps restructure or dismantle the Praetorian Guard?

Why did the princeps/emperors of various dynasties prior to Constantine the Great (d.337 AD) allow the Praetorian Guard to continue to amass such power and repeatedly cause trouble, including palace ...
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How did Roman armies survive in the desert?

I'm writing a novel set in the third century. A general is marching his army through the middle of the Syrian Desert. How did Roman armies with tens of thousands of soldiers survive in the arid ...
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Is there any evidence of STD's in ancient times?

Are there any ancient texts that show or imply that their authors knew that certain diseases were spread through sexual activity? It seems like sexual contagion was recognized in the 16th century ...
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Who kept Roman peculium records?

This is effectively a Roman banking question but specifically with respect to the custody and record keeping of slaves wages. Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities indicates a need for a lot of ...
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Were there any conquests that Ancient Rome undertook explicitly to gain control of a natural resource?

Was there ever a case when Rome conquered a territory solely for the purpose of gaining control of a specific resource (spice, ore, timber, etc....)? I'm looking for something backed up by historical ...
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Were Roman public roads built by private companies?

According to a civil engineer (video in Spanish), the Appian way was built as a concession. This is, it was built by a private "company", paid by the state. Unfortunately, Wikipedia is not clear ...
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What happened to all the scholars and scientists of Western Rome during the barbarian invasions?

We know that the dawn of the age of Renaissance and the dusk of the Middle Ages were accelerated by the fall of Byzantine Empire and the transfer of a big chunk of "Ancient Knowledge" from Greece to ...

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