When studying global history there are innumerable periods where civilizations made substantial achievements in which are til this day well regarded and adapted throughout the world. Examples of these wondrous civilizations include the Roman Empire and the Byzantine Empire. These two Empires are known for their many achievements and advancements that have influenced them and the world.
As expected the Roman Empire’s most obvious achievement was their vast empire, which stretched over three continents and their long period of rule. The Roman Empire ruled from 625 BC to 476 AD, which is 1101 years of rule, include the eastern Roman Empire that lasted until 1453 AD and that makes 2078 years of rule. Those two points by themselves are impressive for such an early civilization that lacked today’s modern technology. By having ruled for so long and being an enormous empire, the Romans spread a tremendous amount of cultural diffusion. They adapted every good idea they saw and when they saw others doing something better then themselves they changed their methods and surpassed them by far. Different religions, cultural, languages, goods, and ideas spread all over the empire making them a powerhouse, and you can’t forget their incredible arm; their military legions and engineering tactics surpassed everyone.
The Roman Legion was possibly the most prevailing army ever, they may not have had the modern warfare machinery that we have today, but they were more than proficient on defeating armies far greater than themselves, despite being armed with the same basic weapons. In addition to this, the Romans created the Twelve Tables, their source of organized laws. The Romans in creating these laws became the first peoples to create the first set of fair written laws. Today these laws have been adapted into many countries constitutions all over the globe, such as the United States Constitution, and even modern day Turkey’s constitution as well. Many of the laws in the US constitution where amended from the Roman’s Twelve Tables, one law in particular includes the right to a fair trail but jury, and innocence til proven guilty. Not only has the Roman Empires achievements influenced our Constitution but our Criminal Justice System as well.
Like Romans the Byzantines had many achievements and advancements. To start there is their Sanitation system. The system they had in place is essentially the same as in any city today. Channels also ran citywide carrying clean water, alongside sewers that carried wastewater away. While most civilizations of the time were voyaging to a water source every day, the citizens of Constantinople, the capital city of the Byzantine Empire, didn’t even have to leave their homes. Unlike in Europe, where a chamber pot would be used then dumped into the street, Constantinople was nirvana. Diseases like Cholera and dysentery were disturbingly common in Europe because of the unsanitary conditions. The sanitation system was an important role in the empire, adding to their lavish and carefree live style. People began to live 50+ years whereas a century ago 40 was considered old and wise. A great achievement of the Byzantine’s was the Hagia Sophia. This structure surpasses the Seville Cathedral, which comes nowhere near as detailed and precision found and clearly seen in the architecture the Hagia Sophia. Its influenced much of Islamic architecture, such as the domes found on mosques. This was a remarkable achievement more many reasons, its architecture, jaw dropping beauty, and the fact that it has remained structurally sound for around 1500 years, despite being on a fault line that has dozens of earthquakes a year. For an ancient civilization that is down right outstanding.
Many ancient civilizations like the Roman and Byzantine Empires advanced and achieved great things that have changed the world and left an impending legacy behind. But it cannot be argued that these two Empires truly had a great influence on the world today.