Rome: Rise and Fall of an Empire

One of the most influential empires to ever hold power is that of the Romans. Once stretching from Britain to the far Middle East, the Romans constructed buildings and roads that are still used today. The downfall of this great civilization is as interesting as its ascension, as its rule lasted for almost 2,000 years. Watch as anthropologists and historians shed light on how the Romans went about their everyday lives and developed technologies and ideals that forever altered the path of humankind.

Military History
1 Season, 11 Episodes
August 29, 2008
Action & Adventure
Cast: Lyall B. Watson
Rome: Rise and Fall of an Empire

Rome: Rise and Fall of an Empire Full Episode Guide

  • In the middle of the 5th century, as the Empire fights a losing battle against its formidable barbarian opponents, one Roman named Orestes finds service in the court of Attila the Hun.

  • Rome is a mere shadow of its former self. Gone is the superior civilization and great expanses of land. Now, Roman rulers are at the mercy of their barbarian invaders, offering them power and territory in exchange for peace.

  • By the end of the fourth century, Romans and barbarians live together uneasily in the empire, a situation that often explodes into violence.

  • Near the end of the third century, civil war has torn the empire apart and left its borders vulnerable to barbarian invasion.

  • In the beginning of the 3rd century, Rome is in crisis. Ravaged by civil war and foreign invasions it now faces an even greater challenge, the new religion of Christianity.

  • It is 162 AD. Marcus Aurelius inherits the empire at its peak. Peace and prosperity have reigned for a hundred years, and the imperial boundaries stretch from the Irish Sea to the sands of Syria.

  • It is 47 AD. The new emperor Claudius is considered by many to be the village idiot. He can only hang onto his throne by waging a spectacular conquest.

  • As the Roman Empire expands its reach into what is now Germany, its legions are faced with ferocious Germanic tribesmen.

  • It is 60 BC. Over-powerful generals and money corrupt politicians run the Roman Republic. The empire churns with civil war, as violence and murder run rampant.

  • When Roman generals Pompey and Crassus, lead their mighty legions of soldiers and mercenaries into the lands surrounding Italy, neither could anticipate the turmoil caused by one bold mercenary: a Thracian warrior named Spartacus.

  • It is 113 BC. Rome is a republic, a small empire clinging to the rim of the Mediterranean. Though it is a democracy in name and spirit, a man there still must be rich and from the noble class to hold the highest offices, both political and military.

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