Were Romans Obsessed With Violence? Essay, Research PaperIn many modern books written about Ancient Rome and her people, the Romans are frequently portrayed as brutal and unforgiving people who enjoyed force and thought it diverting to see people being injured and killed to the point of compulsion. It is my purpose to set up whether this categorization is justified or if it is merely an hyperbole of what a little group of people enjoyed.While it is known that in Rome there were gladiatorial battles, public whippings and the maintaining of slaves was legal ( and common ) , it is besides of import to understand merely precisely how advanced the Romans were. The Longman Dictionary of the English Language defines civilised as & # 8220 ; of or being peoples of states in a province of civilisation. & # 8221 ; And so defines civilization as & # 8220 ; a comparatively high degree of cultural development ; specifically the phase of cultural development at which composing and the maintaining of records is attained. & # 8221 ; I think that by this definition, the Romans were civilised, the educated being able to compose and detailed records being kept by many historians.
The Romans besides had written Torahs and authorities, including ( subsequently ) an assembly for the poorer categories. In fact, their system of jurisprudence was really rather advanced ( even if it was designed to assist the rich ) & # 8211 ; & # 8220 ; The thought was accepted that a adult male & # 8217 ; s purposes ought to be taken into history, and there was less importance attached to what he did and what he meant to make. The following thing to go established was the impression that all work forces must be treated equally. & # 8221 ; This manner of thought was really advanced and non barbarian or uncivilised at all, in fact the same impression that all work forces should be treated every bit was non established in America, Australia and other states for many years.It is now common cognition that, in Ancient Rome, people frequently attended ( and enjoyed ) gladiatorial battles to the decease, wild animal Hunts, naval conflicts and chariot racing, all which frequently had spiritual beginnings. During the reign of Caesar, 1000s of work forces and animate beings were butchered merely to do a Roman vacation! The Romans besides enjoyed dumb shows and dramas which excessively were frequently really violent in nature & # 8211 ; & # 8220 ; It was non uncommon for a condemned felon to be executed [ on phase ] as portion of the play.
& # 8221 ; In modern beginnings, it is frequently portrayed that slaves were treated more harshly than was really the instance. Slaves in Rome really did hold some benefits & # 8211 ; & # 8220 ; It is clear that slaves owned land, belongings, ships, involvements in concern concerns, even slaves of their ain, and that their rights were protected by law. & # 8221 ; In most instances, slaves were citizens of conquered lands who had been spared and put into bondage alternatively of being executed. This in itself was a & # 8216 ; profit & # 8217 ; . Often slaves were trained by their & # 8216 ; Masterss & # 8217 ; in a trade, giving them accomplishments and once more profiting them.
& # 8220 ; For a adult male from a & # 8216 ; backward & # 8217 ; race might be brought within the picket of civilization, educated and trained in a trade or profession, and turned into a utile member of society. & # 8221 ; Although this infusion is clearly written by person non a slave, it proves that a slave may larn a batch and really profit from bondage. In fact, Satricon of Petronius, who was one time a slave really said & # 8220 ; Thanks heavens for bondage, it made me what you see today. & # 8221 ; Although this lone the history of one adult male, it shows that at least some people really recognised the benefits that slavery brought them.On the other manus though, some slave Masterss treated their slaves really ill. In the eyes of the Roman jurisprudence, a slave was the absolute belongings of his maestro and he could inflict any sort of penalty on his that he chose and whipping, anguish and the slaying of slaves was common, and some slaves lived in changeless fright of their Masterss. Often Masterss would assail their slaves for the most minor and fiddling grounds, and frequently because they wanted to take their choler out.
“Farm slaves frequently toiled in concatenation packs, populating like animate beings and in changeless fright of the whip or the cross.” And “It was common in condemnable instances for slaves’ grounds to be given under anguish, and the jurisprudence of the Imperial age was explicit on how to make so.” The followers is a description of the rough conditions of slaves who worked at a flourmill, written by Apuleius, ( c. AD157 ) : ”These hapless, undersized slaves. Their tegument was black and bluish with contusions, their dorsums covered with cuts from the whip. They were covered with shreds, non apparels, and it was barely adequate to do them decent. They had been branded on the brow and half of their hair was shaved off. On their legs they wore iron chains.
” Although many slaves were treated really severely, there were many Masterss that treated good and sometimes even respected their slaves, who were frequently more gifted at a peculiar trade than their maestro. Many slaves were frequently released by their Masterss. “It was discovered that, the nearer the batch of a slave approached a free adult male, the more utile he was.” This realization helped slaves invariably.
ConclusionAlthough much of the grounds portrays the Romans as brutal, unforgiving and obsessed with force, we must look at precisely why this is thought. When authors try to turn out that the Romans were obsessed with force, they frequently refer to: gladiatorial battles, chariot racing, wild animal Hunts, and ( largely ) the maintaining of slaves. However, when you look at this list of ‘entertainments’ , you see that they are all similar to things that have been/are done in the ‘modern world’ .
See packaging – although the regulations are more rigorous and the drawerss do non contend to the decease, they do crush each other, doing long-run harm to both. This isn’t all that different to gladiatorial battles! Chariot racing is really similar to drive racing, and today, people pay to run doped animate beings in confined Parkss. Acerate leaf to state, the maintaining of slaves continued good into the nineteenth Century. And although it can be said that the Romans watched these amusements to see force and decease, the same can be said about the people of the ‘modern world’ . There is merely one ground that people watch packaging – to see people acquiring injury, and the ‘highlights’ of the motor racing are ever the dramatic crashes.Therefore, the Romans were no more violent as a society than our ain. We have the same kind of amusement and bask the same violent things.
I think that it is really unjust to state that the Romans were obsessed with force when we ourselves partake in the same kind of things they did.BibliographyAncient SourcesPlutarch, The Fall of the Roman Empire, Penguin Books, Middlesex, England, 1972Modern SourcesP Mantin & R Pulley, The Roman World: From Republic to Empire, Cambridge University Press, England, 1992KR Bradley, Slavery and Rebellion in the Roman World, Indiana University Press, Bloomington, Indiana, USA, 1989Longman Dictionary of the English Languages, WM Clowes Ltd. , Beccles & London, England, 1984REC Burrell, The Romans and Their World, A.Wheaton & Co. , Exeter, England, 1970RH Barrow, The Romans, Penguin Books Ltd. , Harmondsworth, Middlesex, England, 1976G. Alf? ldy, The Social History of Rome, The John Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, Maryland, USA, 199134e