Roman Society Essay
The ancient Roman society was filled with such a complex system based on traditions, power, and wealth. Roman citizens held on to their pride and their standards of living quite well. Their means of living were quite distinctive compared to other ancient cultures. Some of their traditions greatly equipped American families’ lives in many fashionable ways, including their values. Their ways of life really inspired many elements in the American society. The Roman society grew from out of a settlement of Latin shepherds and farmers on the Palatine Hill to a strong confederation of united peoples. It greatly exhibited such profound family rituals and respected values.
The family was the most important and sacred bond throughout Rome. They had dependent clients and slaves that submitted under the chief’s authority. The leader or chief of the family was the father (paterfamilias). He was the supreme ruler of the entire family. The father was in charge of performing religious rituals and rites concerning the burning fire. The ancient Roman families build strong esteem upon their ancestors and looked upon them with such honor. The families were obliged to worship them as long as they lived because their ancestors brought them together (Morey, Ch.3).
In ancient Rome (27B.C-1453A.D), the two main social groups were the patricians and the plebeians (History on the Net Group). The patricians associated with the equestrians and the senate officials making up the Roman upper class. The plebeians associated with the freed people, Latins, foreigners, women in the lower class, and slaves. All together these groups made up the Roman lower class. The middle class was non-existent. These classes were divided based upon economic, political, and military status or power (Talmor Media). The upper class, which was represented by the patricians descended from powerful noble families. These types of people possessed land and lived in large eloquent homes with their families. Their powers were represented in the Roman Senate greatly compared to the lower class, who hardly had any say in their government.
The wealthy patricians isolated themselves from the poorer and non-wealthy groups, by only marrying and doing business with their own members of the upper class (History on the Net Group). This class was made up of extremely well-educated males which had the power to hold certain officers. Since the acquiring of power was not hereditary, it was greatly enforced that in order to achieve power, one must be educated well enough and fight to get the throne. If the members of the Roman class were rich enough, they could enroll as equestrians (Talmor Media).
Plebeians, as well as the freed people, Latins, foreigners, women in the lower class, and slaves we held underneath the upper class (Talmor Media). They were totally deprived of their political rights. Plebeians consisted of artisans and peasants who worked on the plantations of wealthy landowners. There homes were small apartments and they did not possess any huge businesses at all (History on the Net Group). “They offered their services in return received the protection of the head of the patrician family, who became their patron” (qtd. in History on the Net Group). The society of the Roman people greatly coincides with the American society in many ways, such as family values and traditions. Today in America, the father is the head of the home and they are the breadwinners of the family.
The Roman Republic was a strong confederation of states, just like the United States of America. Like, the U.S. Rome beginnings were involved in loose, isolated settlements. The people were not as unified in the past (Morey). In addition, their social classes are similar with the social classes in the United States. The Roman Republic’s classes of society shows the basic elements of the classes found in America, although the Romans did not have a middle class in particular. The poor people in the U.S as well as in ancient Rome were not very popular in society and hardly ever rose into governmental affairs ( Talmor Media). The rich Roman people on the other hand are somewhat like the ones in America, possessing acres of land, businesses, money and a greater opportunity in running in government offices (History on the Net Group). This is the way Roman society was like in the old times.
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