Very Short Question With Answer (1 Mark Each)
Q.1. What formed the boundaries of the Roman Empire to the north as well as south?
Ans. The boundaries of the Roman Empire were formed to the north by the rivers Rhine and Denube. These were formed by the huge expanse of desert called the Sahara to the South.
Q. 2. Which two languages were used in the administration of Roman Empire?
Ans. Latin and Greek languages were used in administration of the Roman Empire.
Q.3. Why was Roman ruler Augustus considered the ‘leading citizen’?
Ans. Roman ruler Augustus was considered as the ‘leading citizen’ only to show that he was not the absolute ruler. It was done out of respect for the Senate.
Q.4. Which empire’s army was a conscripted army? What was its meaning?
Ans. The army of Persian empire was a conscripted army or which is forcibly recruited. It means that military service was compulsory for some adult males of the state.
Q.5. State any two features of the Roman army.
Ans. (i) The Roman army was professional in which every soldier was paid a salary.
(ii) Soldiers were put in a minimum of 25 years of service.
Q. 6. Which were the three main players in the political history of Rome?
Ans. (i) The emperor
(ii) The aristocracy
(iii) The army.
Q.7. What was the base of membership of Senate in Rome?
Ans. Wealth and the office-holding was the base of membership of Senate.
Q.8. What is meant by the Civil War?
Ans. Armed struggle between two groups of a country to capture power is known as the Civil War.
Q. 9. For what the age of Roman emperor Augustus is known and why?
Ans. Augustan age is known for the peace. It was so because this peace came in after the decades of internal conflict and centuries of military conquests.
Q.10. What is meant by the Near East of Rome?
Ans. The meaning of Near East of Rome is the territory east of the Mediterranean sea. Territories of Syria, Palestine and Arabia were included in it.
Q. 11. What was the importance of great urban centres in imperial system of Rome ? Write names of the three largest urban centres of Rome?
Ans. The great urban centres were the true bedrock of the imperial system in Rome. The Government was able to tax the provincial countrysides through these cities which generated major portion of the wealth of the empire. Carthage, Alexandria and Antioch were three largest urban centres of Rome.
Q. 12. What steps did the emperor Gallienus take to prevent control of the empire from falling into Senator’s hands?
Ans. (i) The emperor Gallienus consolidated the rise of power of the new elites.
(ii) He excluded Senators from military command. An Empire Across Three Continents 45
Q. 13. In the third century Rome, what did the trends of majority of provincial Senators reflect?
Ans. (i) These trends reflected that there was the general decline of Italy within the empire from political and economic perspective.
(ii) These trends reflected that there was a rise of new elites in the wealthier and more urbanised parts of the Mediterranean.
Q. 14. What is meant by a ‘city’ in the Roman sense?
Ans. In Roman sense, a city was an urban centre which had its own magistrates, city council and a definite territory. This territory contained many villages under its jurisdiction.
Q. 15. Why were public baths opposed in Iran?
Ans. The clergy of Iran viewed water as a sacred element and to use it for public bathing seemed a desecration to them. This is the reason why public baths were opposed in Iran.
Q. 16. In the third century,rulers of which dynasty of Iron and which Germanic tribes invaded the Roman Empire?
Ans. In the third century, rulers of the Sasani dynasty of Iran and Germanic tribes, namely the Alomanni, the Franks and the Goths invaded the Roman Empire.
Q. 17. How far were Roman women selfdependent?
Ans. (i) Roman women were given enough legal rights in owing and managing property
(ii) Divorce was relatively an easy affair.
Q.18. What were Amphorae? Where were they made?
Ans. Amphorae were a type of containers. They were used in transporting liquids like wine and olive oil. They were made in the Mediterranean region.
Q. 19. Name four densely populated areas of Roman empire (two each from Italy and Egypt).
Ans. (i) Campania and Sicily in Italy.
(ii) Fayum and Galilee in Egypt.
Q. 20. From where did the best kinds of wine and wheat come to Rome?
Ans. The best kind of wine came to Rome from Campania and wheat from Sicily and Byzacium.
Short Question With Answer (1 Mark Each)
Q. 1. Describe the major sources of Roman history.
Ans. The major sources of Roman history can be broadly divided into three groups :
(i) Texts (ii) Documents (iii) Material remains.
(i) Texts : Letters, speeches, sermons, laws, histories of the period written by contemporaries, etc., are included in it.
(ii) Documents : Inscriptions and papyri are included in it. Inscriptions were generally cut on stone which is why they have survived even till today. A large number of inscriptions have survived in both Greek and Latin. Thousands of contracts, letters, accounts and official documents have survived on papyrus which was a reed like plant and whose leaves were used for writing.
(iii) Material remains : A number of items are included in material remains. They are mainly discovered by archaeologists. These include monuments, buildings, other kinds of structures, coins, pottery, mosaics, entire landscapes, etc. Each of these remains give us specific information about the Roman past.
Q. 2. Discuss the expansion of the Roman and Iranian empires.
Ans. In the period down to the 630s, most of the Europe, North Africa and the Middle East was ruled over by the two powerful empires. These two powerful empires were of Rome and Iran. These both empires were rivals to each other. For much of their history, they fought against each other. Both of these empires were separated only by a narrow strip of land which ran along the river Euphrates and they both lay next to each other.
(i) The Roman Empire. The Mediterranean and all the regions around that sea, in north as well as in south, was dominated by the Roman Empire. In the north direction, boundaries of the Roman empire were formed by two rivers—the Rhine and the Danube. In the south direction, its boundaries were formed by the huge expanse of the Sahara desert.
(ii) The Iranian Empire. Whole of the area towards south of the Caspian Sea down to eastern Arabia and even sometimes large parts of Afghanistan were controlled by the Iranian Empire. Both of these superpowers had divided most of the world which is known as ‘Ta ch’ in in Chinese.
Q. 3. Give a brief description of the Republican System of the Roman Empire.
Ans. The Republican System of the Roman Empire was the system of government in which the real power vested in the Senate. Members of the Senate enjoyed a life-long term. For it, wealth and prestige of office were of more importance. So the Senate was dominated by rich people, known as the elites. In practice, Republic was a government of the elites, which was run by an institution, namely the Senate. Republic government was there from 509 BCE to 27 BCE. In 27 BCE it was overthrown by Julius Caesar’s adopted son and successor Octavian and he himself became the emperor of Rome.
Q. 4. What is meant by the ‘Principate’ in context of the Roman Empire ? What was the position of emperor and the Senate in it ?
Ans. Principate was the regime established by the first Roman emperor, Augustus, in 27 BCE. Although Augustus was the only real source of authority and was the sole ruler but he kept the fiction alive that he was not the absolute ruler, only the ‘leading citizen’. It was done to give respect to the Senate.
Senate was the body which had controlled the Rome in the days when it was a Republic. The existence of this institution remained for centuries. This institution was representing the aristocracy and elites means the wealthiest families of Rome. But later on Italian descent mainly landowners were also included in it. Emperors were judged by the fact that how they behaved towards the Senate. Hostile emperors toward Senatorial class were judged as the worst emperors. Many Senators yearned to go back to the age of the Republic. But most of the Senators must have realised that this was not possible.
Q. 5. Briefly describe the role of army in the early Roman Empire.
Ans. The army was one of the major institutions of the Roman Empire. The army of the Roman Empire was a paid professional army. Every soldier had to give minimum of 25 years of service. In fact, the existence of a paid army was one of the distinctive features of the Roman Empire. The army definitely had the power to determine the fate of emperors as it was the largest single organised body in the empire.
There were constant agitations of soldiers for better wages and service conditions. These agitations, most of the times, were changed into the mutinees. Army was feared and hated by the Senate. It was so because it was a source of violence. The success of individual emperors was mainly dependent upon their control over the army. When the armies were divided then the result generally was a civil war.
Q. 6. What was the significance of provincial and local rule of the early Roman Empire?
Ans. (i) Provincial Rule : The Roman direct rule was gradually extended. This process was done by capturing many dependent kingdoms into provincial territories of the Roman Empire. The Near East region was full of this type of kingdoms. The kingdoms lay in the west direction of the river Euphrates were also swallowed by Rome before the early second century. Some of these kingdoms were very much wealthy. In fact, except Italy, all the territories of the empire were divided into provinces and all of them had to pay taxes.
(ii) Local Rule : A number of cities were set up in whole of the empire. Whole of the empire was controlled through these cities. These cities or great urban centres were the actual basis of the imperial system. The government was able to tax the provincial countrysides through these centres. These taxes were one of the major source of the wealth of the empire.
Q. 7. Who were the three main players in the political history of the Roman Empire ? Write two or three sentences about each of them.
Ans. The three main players in the political history of the Roman Empire were the emperor, the elite group and the army.
(i) The Emperor : The emperor was the sole ruler of the empire, but he was called the leading citizen. This was done out of respect for the Senate. It also showed that he was not the absolute ruler.
(ii) The Elite Group : The elite group stood for the Senate. It included members of the aristocracy and wealthy families. It controlled Rome in the days when it was a Republic. Emperors were judged by how they behaved towards the Senate. Emperors who were hostile to the Senate were considered the worst.
(iii) The Army : Next to the emperor and the Senate was the army. It was a professional one. Each soldier was paid a salary. The army had the power to determine the fate of emperors.
Q. 8. What was a ‘city’ in the Roman sense? Also tell some characteristics of the urban life.
Ans. In the Roman sense, a city was an urban centre which had its own magistrate, city council and a definite territory. This territory contained many villages under its jurisdiction. So one city could not be a part of another city. Decision about the status of a city or village was depended upon royality. Villages could be given the status of cities, and vice-versa.
Characteristics of the urban life :
(i) There was no shortage of food in cities.
(ii) Cities had better facilities during famines than the countryside.
(iii) Urban people enjoyed a higher level of entertainment. For example, one calendar tells us that spectecula shows filled not less than 176 days of the year.
Q. 9. By giving example, explain that the Roman Empire faced a lot of strain in the third century.
Ans. The Roman empire faced a lot of strain in the third century. It would be clear from the following examples:
(i) In 225 C.E., a new and more aggressive dynasty emerged in Iran. People of this dynasty called themselves the ‘Sasanians’. They expanded very quickly towards the Euphrates within just 15 years. A famous rock inscription, written in three languages, have been found in which the Iranian ruler, Shapur I, claimed that he destroyed a Roman army of 60,000. He also claimed to capture the eastern capital of Antioch.
(ii) Meanwhile, a number of Germanic tribes (the Alamanni, the Franks and the Goths) started moving towards the Rhine and Danube frontiers. The whole period from 233 to 280 C.E. saw repeated attacks over provinces stretched from the Black Sea to the Alps and southern Germany. Due to these invasions, the Romans were forced to abandon most of their territory beyond the river Danube.
(iii) The emperors of this era had to remain constantly in the fields against the barbarians (German tribes).
(iv) The quick succession of emperors in the 3rd century is a definite example of the strains faced by the empire during this period.
Q. 10. There was widespread cultural diversity in the Roman Empire. Give some examples.
Ans. There is no doubt that there was widespread cultural diversity in the Roman Empire. This diversity was reflected in many ways and at many levels.
(i) There was vast diversity of religious cults and local dieties.
(ii) There was plurality of spoken languages.
(iii) People wore various styles of dress and costume.
(iv) People enjoyed different kinds of food.
(v) Forms of social organisation were different.
(vi) Their patterns of settlement were of various types.