The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

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The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire The primary reason for the Roman Empires decline and eventual fall was the dwindling of the Roman Empire's economic might. This affected nearly every aspect of Roman life, from the decline of the population to the lack of maintenance of foundation. There were also some military aspects that led to there demise and because people became disinterested in joining the Roman army Rome was left unprotected against all of their enemies. The primary cause of the deterioration of the economy was the lack of circulating currency in the Western Empire. Two reasons for the lack of funds were wholesale stock piling of bullion by Roman citizens, and the widespread looting of the Roman treasury by the barbarians. These two factors, combined with the massive trade deficit with Eastern Regions of the Empire extinguished the growth of wealth in the west. The changing rainfall patterns and climate in the Mediterranean began to alternate annually between hot droughts and cold rainy seasons. This decreased the number of crops during the harvest time and forced the Romans to undergo widespread irrigation projects on land The huge quantities of water needed for this project had to be contained in large reservoirs, and the standing water soon became stagnant, and stagnant water is the ideal environment for breeding mosquitoes who are the carriers of malaria. Malaria began to manifest the empire at epidemic levels and started weakening and killing a large percentage of the population. A man by the name of Edward Gibbon believes that the Roman Empire met its demise because of its decaying infrastructure and because Rome's buildings were severely distorted throughout the years by time and nature and they began to topple and decay. Nero's fire which lasted about six days also caused mass amounts of damage on the Roman city because the countless buildings acted as a fuel for the flames. When the fire was over only four of the fourteen regions were left, three were totally destroyed, and seven were destroyed by the remains of the smoking structures. The Roman empire crumbled due to insufficient economic power, which came about for a variety of reasons. It lacked the resources necessary to keep such a vast empire intact. The empire reached such a point that it could no longer support itself becoming top heavy, and crashed down like a tower that had grown too high for its own foundation.
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