The Fall Of The Roman Empire Essay

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There were many reasons for the fall of the Roman Empire. Each one interweaved with the other. Many even blame the initiation of Christianity in 337 AD by Constantine the Great as the definitive cause while others blame it on increases in unemployment, inflation, military expenditure and slave labour while others blame it on the ethical issues such the decline in morals, the lack of discipline of the armies and the political corruption within the Empire. Three major contributions that led to the collapse of the once great empire were: the heavy military spending in order to expand the Empire, the over-reliance on slave labour which led to an increase in unemployment, and the political corruption and abuse of power by the Praetorian Guard leading to the unfair selection of many disreputable emperors and the assassination of those not favoured by the Guard. One of the main reasons of the collapse of the Roman Empire was the over expenditure on the military to constantly fund wars abroad. In order for the Romans to invade and conquer other provinces they had to spend heavily on their legions. The Roman armies and supply lines became over-stretched resulting in thousands of soldiers being recruited and deployed from Rome into other territories as invaders or defenders. They also depended on soldiers to defend the borders of the lands they had conquered from barbarian attacks which resulted in the increased manufacturing of weapons and more money being spent on soldiers. High military spending left the Romans with very limited resources for other essential government projects such as the building of more public houses and the development of roads and aqueducts as well as leading to inflation. The over-expenditure on the military led th... ... middle of paper ... ...on military expansion as it put strain on the Roman government as it cost them many economic and military casualties as they were losing a load of money hiring soldiers to invade and often replace them when they died without gaining from the lands they conquered. In my opinion, this is the major factor pertaining to the collapse of the Roman Empire. The political corruption allowed the Praetorian Guard to be above the law and announce whoever they wanted as Emperor regardless of whether they were capable of the task. The dependence on slave labour caused high unemployment and the stagnation of technology for the last 400 years of the Roman Empire. The Roman Empire is said to have completely collapsed when the German barbarians overthrew the last Emperor, Romulus Augustus in 476 and introduced a more democratic form of government which was very short-lived.

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