The world between 100 C. E. and 600 C. E. in the classical era witnessed the collapse of major civilizations in Rome, India and China. Rome, in the west, evolved from a strong centralized state to a position of complete political fragmentation. It was a society that was at its cultural height in creativity that ended in total decline; however, in the eastern portions of the Roman Empire there was political continuity and centralization of state as seen in the Byzantine Empire, which split Rome into two.
The world at this time was witnessing the mass movement of pastoral people interacting with sedentary people and the weaknesses of many empires including the Han Dynasty, the Guptas and Rome. During the Pax Romana Era, the Roman Empire was at its peak in the Mediterranean because of powerful, unified governmental rulings. The army and the emperors ruled over a huge amount of land; from North Africa to the northern parts of Britannia, a city-state. Throughout the empire, infrastructures and roads were cultivated by the centralized governments of Rome.
However, by 600 C. E. , the empire had collapsed due to a feudalistic system with no centralized government. Before 100 C. E. , the empire relied on developing conquests and extensive expansion. But by 600 C. E. , the empire had stopped land acquisition. Due to this complication and a non-existent budget, pressures on the government to fund the army substantially increased. Because of this, the Rome shifted from growth to defensive. This resulted in the decline of men wanting to join the army; by the 4th century, the army diminished in numbers to the point of ruin.
As a result incompetent rulers, unable to address the magnitude of these issues, came to power. As the empire continued to weaken, Germanic tribes invaded Rome and the army was left defenseless. As a result, the Roman Empire collapsed due to internal and external strife. In 100 C. E. , Rome was at its cultural high point. A mass amount of architecture began to be built such as the Coliseum, aqueducts and roads. The Romans also excelled in art with the building of intricate mosaics and elegant statues that celebrated the empire and the former republic.
Virtue was also impacted Rome. Virtue was instilled in the patrician class that meant the serving of the empire. In 100 C. E. , the strong government provided the society where people could pursue jobs in art, architecture, and education. By 600 C. E. , the west had collapsed. Due to the collapse, people had less time to pursue these high forms of culture. As a result, literacy declined and the great buildings and infrastructures were neglected and torn down. Over time, Rome abandoned the idea of virtue and skills were lost or forgotten.
Without a centralized government human beings cannot arise to great cultural outputs of great buildings and infrastructure; all around the world at the end of the Classical Era witnessed a great decline in culture. However, in the East, Rome continued to have centralized governments seen in the Byzantine Empire. As the West collapsed, the East continued to strive for another 1,000 years. By 600 C. E. , the Byzantine rose to the West culturally speaking. They had forms of culture and government. The rebuilding of Constantinople by Emperor Justinian led to reforms of legal codes which set the Byzantine on good feet.
The reason the East kept going was because of the relocation of Constantine, which was the capital of Rome, to Constantinople in the 4th century, which in turn, saved the East from failure. Unlike the West, the East had a Hellenistic tradition that brought people together. With the many aspects of Christianity, the Byzantine Empire continued to stick together. The Roman world in the Classical Era witnessed the collapse of the Roman Empire in the West and the continuing of the east. This changes and continuities put the West and East on different historical paths.
Cite this Roman Empire in World’s History
Roman Empire in World’s History. (2016, Oct 30). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/roman-empire-in-worlds-history/