Another great Civilization is that of the Romans. The Romans are a civilization of great skill and finesse. Rome situated in central Mediterranean was a superpower since 27 BC. The villages beside the Tiber river became a powerful city, conquering the rest of Italy and the lands around the Mediterranean Sea. At the peak of its civilization the Roman empire covered 30 of today’s countries and has over 50 million people living in it. Under Augustus Caesar the Roman Empire expanded as more overseas territories were added.
Italian food today is mostly pasta, tomatoes and red peppers but if you were in Ancient Rome you wouldn't have heard of any of these. The staple foods were bread, olives, olive oil and cheese. Poor people received free bread from the state. Large amounts of grain had to be imported largely from Egypt. There was no tea or coffee. You drank wine or water. Wine was almost always watered down. It was considered bad manners to drink wine undiluted. The amount of fish or meat you ate depended on what you could afford. Pork and mutton were popular meats, though more exotic and exquisite dishes as flamingos were served at banquets. The members of wealthy families had a kitchen and slaves to do all their cooking. If your family was poor, you ate simple foods like bread and cheese or bought hot food in the evening from a stall in the street. You got your water from public fountains.
The most important article of clothing for Ancient Roman was the Toga. However, you could only wear a Toga if you were a citizen. Depending on your social status your Toga had various frills. If you were a male child of a citizen you would were a Toga with a purple stripe. At 16 you would get a pure white Toga. Members of the senate had a Toga with a purple stripe. The emperor’s robe was purple. A poor man wears a tunic and a loincloth. In public, people wore boots but in private they wore sandals.
Your place in Roman society was decided by who your parents were. People were divided into two castes – citizens and non-citizens. To qualify for citizenship your parents had to be Roman born and bred. People were also granted citizenship and the privileges that went with it as a reward. If you were a non-citizen, your parents had
probably been slaves or born in the provinces. Roman citizens were further divided into three classes- aristocrats, knights and commoners.
Ancient Romans were very fond of playing games. Even though they would have to work, there were still public holidays. Wealthy aristocrats would pay for the entertainment like Chariot races, Theatrical performances, Gladiators fights, and wild beast shows. Chariot racing was extremely popular. Thousands of people packed into the circus to cheer on teams like the Blues, Reds, Greens, and Whites. Large sums of money were bet on the races. The Romans borrowed the idea of theater from the Greeks, at first the plays were just Greek plays retold in Latin. Later comedies by Roman playwrights were extremely popular. Gladiator fights though they where extremely gory and to the death, were immensely popular and well respected.
The Romans learned most of their Architectural techniques from the Etruscans and the Greeks. They had two major Architectural advances. The first advance was that of the temple, though still open space, took shape: stairs led to an elevated floor, lots of columns were added to support a roof, and decorative colors were included. The second advance was that the huts were transformed into larger and more permanent houses.
How Would You Survive As An Ancient Roman - © The Salariya Book Co Ltd MCMXCII