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Thread: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

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    Default How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    also, what was the order in which they conquered their territory? For example, did they go after Carthage first than Gaul. Also, what was rome's richest and poorest province?
    Last edited by Robertclive; February 26, 2013 at 11:41 AM.

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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    There wasn't a plan during the Republic or Empire really for that matter. They attacked people opportunistically when they felt they had a Ius ad Bellum that could be approved by the S.P.Q.R. Or whatever the Emperor figured was a good idea.

    Of course they tended to cause conflicts in the first place by being difficult or unpleasant.
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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    The Romans played the champion of freedom for the Greek cities, much like America does today. The Greeks were stupid and weakened enough to take the bait and bring Rome in. Once MAcedon had fallen the rest were easy pickings.
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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    ^Pretty much that, when the Romans fought the Macedonians they accepted the greeks as allies under their influence, and when a few cities tried to deify them, I forget which ones, they destroyed them and the rest fell into line. I mean, they were weakend by hundreds of years of intercine warfare and attempts to fight off the macedonians they pretty much fell apart. Though they did try to revolt during hte Mitheradic Wars with Pontus during the early 1st century BC
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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Quote Originally Posted by Robertclive View Post
    How were the romans able to conquer Greece
    "Greece" was divided into many states, alliances and kingdoms. Rome was invited in by some, and it was in Romes interest to attck others for the financial gain or glory of individual Romans. The Romans could also draw on a larger manpower pool so although their armies weren't always bigger, if you slaughtered one they'd send another.

    Quote Originally Posted by Robertclive View Post
    also, what was the order in which they conquered their territory? For example, did they go after Carthage first than Gaul.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_province

    They established provinces in captured territories that the Senate or Monarch decided to keep under Roman control. Many territories people think of as Roman provinces were actually Roman allies. The status of territories changed as rulers died or rebelled. Its a complicated subject.

    Quote Originally Posted by Robertclive View Post
    Also, what was rome's richest and poorest province?
    Egypt was famously wealthy, I think it had one seventh of the Empire's population and was a massive exporter of grain as well as a long established civilisation with a an entrenched tax system and a recently established Hellenic trade hub (in Alexandria) as well as some sea trade from the Red Sea and points south.

    The Emperors kept control of the provinces in the hands of their private nominees, they never let senators govern there.

    Before Egypt was taken over I belive Asia (= eastern Turkey) was the richest Roman province, lots of productive land and wealthy trading cities. Prior to that I believe Sicily was a source of much wealth (not to mention Greek culture) for Rome.

    The poorest province? I imagine the Germania Magna wasn't returning a lot of gold to the treasury for the brief time it was held by Rome. Bitain had three provinces, and none of them seem to have paid for the cost of occupying them. Just guessing though
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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Cyclops, when you speak of 'Germania magna' do you mean the two Germanic provinces of 'Germania Superior' and 'Germania Inferior'?

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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Quote Originally Posted by Diocle View Post
    Cyclops, when you speak of 'Germania magna' do you mean the two Germanic provinces of 'Germania Superior' and 'Germania Inferior'?
    Germania Magna literally means the great Germany, so probably Germania Superior.
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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Rome kept on crashing with the already existing players of the Mediterranean and many conquest weren't planned or even considered on a positive light at first; many cases of Roman Conquest came up as initially defensive wars(if these was simple Roman Propaganda or they truly felt threatened by the likes of Antiochus, Macedonians, Epirus, the Carthies, Mythridates etc it's a matter of debate). Exception is Gaul, Caesar's goal was to wage an aggressive war against the unconquered tribes of northern and central gaul in order to gain political and financial resources that might allow him to get a better standing in an already quite "unequal" Triumvirate(when compared to Pompey's prestige and influence and Crassus treasure).

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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclops View Post
    Before Egypt was taken over I belive Asia (= eastern Turkey) was the richest Roman province, lots of productive land and wealthy trading cities. Prior to that I believe Sicily was a source of much wealth (not to mention Greek culture) for Rome.
    Asia province was actually in western Anatolia (comprising territories like Ionia and Caria), not eastern Anatolia (comprised of Pontus' heartland, places like Cappadocia and Cilicia, etc.). And yes, any republican proconsul who governed there became filthy rich through tax farmers. That caused a lot of local problems though. And when the territory temporarily fell out of Roman control at one point their economy took a serious dip.@RobertClive. This whole subject is covered very well and succinctly by Klaus Bringmann in his History of the Roman Republic. I'd suggest picking up that book if you have the time. It more or less echoes what others have already said here, but in greater detail. The order of conquest is rather irrelevant, since different territories were captured for different reasons and without much planning before some cursory debate in the Senate. Rome had no great desire to subjugate all of Greece (if nothing else, it was evidenced by pulling out their legions once Macedon was initially subdued). Rome simply got dragged into a lot of conflicts due to their complex web of alliances and the eastern Mediterranean's view of Rome as the new arbiter in all affairs. You could trace this back to several key events, the one most prominent in my mind being the humbling defeat of the Seleucids at Magnesia in 190 BC. The stringent peace treaty imposed on them afterwards more or less cemented Rome's continual presence in the East and the necessity of their involvement in every quarrel that sprung up between the Greeks.
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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Quote Originally Posted by Claudius Gothicus View Post
    Rome kept on crashing with the already existing players of the Mediterranean and many conquest weren't planned or even considered on a positive light at first; many cases of Roman Conquest came up as initially defensive wars(if these was simple Roman Propaganda or they truly felt threatened by the likes of Antiochus, Macedonians, Epirus, the Carthies, Mythridates etc it's a matter of debate). Exception is Gaul, Caesar's goal was to wage an aggressive war against the unconquered tribes of northern and central gaul in order to gain political and financial resources that might allow him to get a better standing in an already quite "unequal" Triumvirate(when compared to Pompey's prestige and influence and Crassus treasure).
    I also feel the war with the Gallics Tribes is more personal to the Roman people in general as they haven't forgotten the 390 BC sack of Rome and they were seen as almost eternal enemies of Rome, for the Gauls constantly attacked them until late early 2nd century BC. Arguably Caesar could say oh in past you were the aggressor and victorious but now this we're are the aggressors and make you suffer the full fold of Rome, but then again this was all for Caesar's personal gain, prestige and pay off his immense debts despite claiming it to be defensive wars similar to prevent another Crimbi War from happening.

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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Britain has to be a candidate for the least profitable province, since it was the first one to be voluntarily abandoned.

    It was probably not the poorest though, since the main reason it was unprofitable was that it required 3 legions to garrison and keep under control.

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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Quote Originally Posted by ivan_the_terrible View Post
    Britain has to be a candidate for the least profitable province, since it was the first one to be voluntarily abandoned.
    Dacia, a resource rich and rapidly romanized province was the first one to be formally and factually abandoned: the Legions left by the 270's and the limes was drawn at the Danube. The Roman population living in there was resettled on northern Moesia(informally renamed as "dacia").

    It was probably not the poorest though, since the main reason it was unprofitable was that it required 3 legions to garrison and keep under control.
    I don't have the actual numbers but excepting specific cases(like Egypt, Africa and Asia who had to be kept by purely economic reasons) most Roman Provinces were abandoned or retained under the decisions of the Imperial Authority, which in turn, usually took action on the basis of strategical, political or defensive premises.
    Last edited by Claudius Gothicus; March 01, 2013 at 05:57 PM.

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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Quote Originally Posted by ivan_the_terrible View Post
    Britain has to be a candidate for the least profitable province, since it was the first one to be voluntarily abandoned.

    It was probably not the poorest though, since the main reason it was unprofitable was that it required 3 legions to garrison and keep under control.
    How profitable a province was depending of many factors. If you take only direct tax income and outcome than Italy was propably the most expansive and worst province for income, because their were free from the main taxes, and had many costly priviliges. Another point is the wealth created by trade and in this case the western Provinces had no reason to stay behind the eastern ones. Just a few months ago i posted a thread with an interactiv map were you can see where good were produces and where we actually find them. Many provinces we wouldn't expected were really strong in international trade.

    http://www.twcenter.net/forums/showt...n-trade-routes

    if you like to play a bit, please go to this thread, because it need a bit explanation to use it.

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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Quote Originally Posted by Marcus Aemilius Lepidus View Post
    Another point is the wealth created by trade and in this case the western Provinces had no reason to stay behind the eastern ones. Just a few months ago i posted a thread with an interactiv map were you can see where good were produces and where we actually find them. Many provinces we wouldn't expected were really strong in international trade.
    Really? I mean, isn't there a correlation between Gaul's, Raetia's, Noricum's and Germania's stagnation and their generally "landlocked" trade? I'm arguing it because land travel was costly (even with the road system), most trade routes were located in sea areas with a rapid port access (like Narborensis, or the Levante, or Asiana) and the Roman organization of productive units (Villa's and small landholdings for example) harmed the transmission of technological advances (like the gallo-roman harvester) that would have created the adequate conditions for a Population Boom.
    Last edited by Claudius Gothicus; March 01, 2013 at 06:46 PM.

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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Quote Originally Posted by Claudius Gothicus View Post
    Really? I mean, isn't there a correlation between Gaul's, Raetia's, Noricum's and Germania's stagnation and their generally "landlocked" trade? I'm arguing it because land travel was costly (even with the road system), most trade routes were located in sea areas with a rapid port access (like Narborensis, or the Levante, or Asiana) and the Roman organization of productive units (Villa's and small landholdings for example) harmed the transmission of technological advances (like the gallo-roman harvester) that would have created the adequate conditions for a Population Boom.
    As you can see also on the traderoutes on the interactive map, you have ideal options to ship stuff from the mare mediterran up to the Rhone and Saon and with some sidearms you have very easily access to the Rhine. In the end you have just a few Kilometer between the Rivers. Just think about how the later Vikings could get so easy access to the heart of the Frankish Empire Today we can't imagin this, because many sidearms are not made for commercial shipping, but in earlier times with diffrent boats it was very easy.

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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Rome big, Greece small.
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    Default Re: How were the romans able to conquer Greece

    Divide and conquer of course. Rome exploited the traditional hatred between the various Greek states and turned one against another. Firstly, Aetolia and Pergamon were used against Macedon and then, when the Seleucids invaded Greece, the Romans managed to keep Phillip from allying himself with Antiochus III. In the Third Macedonian War, the Macedonians had been stripped of most of their allies in mainland Greece: Epirus, the Achaean League, even Thessaly had joined the Romans. Rome managed to fight one enemy at a time: first Macedon, then the Seleucids, then the Aetolians and lastly, the Achaean League. Slowly but steadily most Greek states realized that Rome was not there to free anyone, but just to impose her hegemony over Greece. When that was realized, the remaining powers were too weak to resist.
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