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Fall Of The Roman Empire Essay

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There were many reasons behind the fall of the Roman Empire, however, the economic reasons were the main source of its collapse. The fourth century was the period of time where the economy started to experience problems. During this time period, there were many inequalities between the rich and the poor, decreasing population, the German Barbarians holding Rome for ransom, cutting off their trade networks, inflation, and finally the de-specialization of the economy. Each of these causes were very significant in leading up to the fall of the Roman Empire.
Throughout history, in many civilizations, there has always been a gap between the rich and the poor, and the gap between these groups in the Roman Empire was no exception either. The difference between the rich and the poor significantly impacted the status of the economy. For example, in the Roman Empire, the rich could get away with almost everything. They could do it by two methods, they could pay their taxes in small portions so they wouldn’t have to pay them all at once, or they could also simply avoid them by bribing the government, as opposed to the poor which had to pay them all at once. (Hayward, 1958, p. 105) If they did not follow this procedure, they would be punished one way or another. Since the rich were of high status, they could be heard by the government easily, with no possible penalties while the poor were given consequences if they did the same. The gap between the rich also grew wider and wider due to wealthy landowners driving tenant farmers out of their lands and treating those lands as their own. The rich were very important in the status of the economy as well. They could impair the authority of the central government. (Haywood, 1958, p. 104-105...

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...etc. Trade was dependent on the status of the government in the Roman Empire. Since the Roman government was really powerful, it restricted some aspects of trade. Along with this, maritime trade was decreasing drastically. There were attacks on ships on the Mediterranean sea, which decreased trade between Rome and other countries. Transport affected the geographic division of labor in the Roman Empire. (Paolilli, 2008, p. 282)
The Roman Empire used to be a prosperous place to live in until it started to experience many problems which led its decline. The status of the economy was affected by many reasons including economic inequality between the wealthy and the lower class, inflation, the ransom of Rome with the Germanic Barbarians and finally, the de-specialization of the economy. Rome’s foolish actions along with some outside influence led Rome to its demise.
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