The Rise of Rome: Making of The World's Greatest Empire

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The Rise of Rome: The Making of the World's Greatest Empire

The book The Rise of Rome: The Making of the World's Greatest Empire by Anthony Everitt provides the readers with the rare account of the Roman Empire history in its early days.

The Early Years of the Roman Empire

According to Everitt, the Roman Empire was founded by Romulus in the year 753 B.C. This was after the hero had moved with a group of refugees from Troy. The beginning of the empire is traced back to a small trading village. In the period between 8th and 7th B.C., the empire was just a trading zone. During this period, the empire was ruled by kings. From the period when the Roman Empire was established, several kings reigned. According to Everitt, about seven kings ruled the nation and the average reign was about 35 years. The last king was overthrown in the year 509 B.C. This marked the birth of the Roman Republic and the history of Rome was shaped from this period.

The Roman Republic

In the 5th century B.C, the government rule changed. There were no more kings and the Senate ruled the republic. The members of the Senate ruled indefinitely for life. Also, two consuls were elected yearly. The military during this period was developed and became very powerful. As opposed to the monarchy period where soldiery was for the noblemen in the society, the Republic soldiers were drawn from all classes of people. The Senate maintained harmony between the priests, bureaucrats, and generals. This created a moment of great stability and prosperity. As a result, Rome had conquered many empires and its boundaries expanded. For instance, Rome defeated Carthage, Greece, Macedonia, and Gaul. One of the strategies that were used to expand the territory was offering citizenship to the defeated subjects. By the 3rd century B.C, Rome was the largest kingdom in the region. It possessed great wealth and a mighty army.

The Strengths of the Book

The main strength of the book is its presentation of the Roman Empire history in its early days. Many historians have covered the history of Rome, how it conquered and controlled ancient Europe. However, very little is known about Rome in its early days. The author of this book identified the gap and provided an insightful analysis and history of the empire during its establishment period. The book starts by providing the reader with the history of the founders. The legendary hero, Romulus, established the kingdom in the mid-seventh century B.C. During this time, the land was ruled by kings. This information is important as it gives the readers a form of background knowledge about Rome, which is usually omitted by many historians. Another strength of the book is that it provides a detailed analysis of the growth and development of Rome to a superpower. The reader can follow the transformation of the republic since it was a small kingdom. In the development of Rome, the detailed analysis enables the reader to identify the factors that made the empire grow so strongly. This indicates that the author defended his thesis well through the book by providing a precise analysis of the history of the empire.

Weaknesses of the Book

Although the book has significant strengths, a major weakness that can be identified is that it does not offer the historical records of all the kings that served in the Roman Empire during the monarchy period. The author just noted that after founding the kingdom, Romulus served as the king. After him, many other kings, who are assumed to be six or seven, reigned. The average reign was indicated as 35 years but little details can be deduced about the reigns. The text does not provide details about the kingship of these kings. This information would have been crucial in mapping the history of Rome. The omission of these details does weaken the basis and background of the book.

A Detailed Assessment of Rome's History

In providing a detailed assessment of the history of Rome, the author utilized ancient texts and artifacts. The Romans had texts that recorded about the occurrences of them in the republic. Although these primary materials were not sufficient, the author has maximally utilized them. The writer has probed the available sources well in search for evidence of the historical moments. With this proper utilization of the primary sources, the writer was able to assemble facts and evidence and developed a detailed analysis of the information regarding the empire.


The manner in which this book was written and arranged is interesting and easy to follow. The sections and chapters are well arranged in a way that they are connected to each other. This creates a continuous flow of the content. The reader is able to connect the ideas as they flow well from one chapter to the next. This book is a rich source of historical information of the Roman Empire. Many people know that Rome was once the greatest nation in the world but do not understand how it was established. This book by Everitt presents such information in an interesting way. I would, therefore, recommend this book to another person.

November 13, 2023



Roman Empire

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