Comparison of Roman and the Athenian Empires

Roman Empire and the Athenian Empire were alike in many ways. Both developed a culture based on the same mythology in order to unite their people in belief (the Romans Latinized the Greek gods and goddesses but the narratives remained largely the same). Individuals like Socrates in Athens or the early Christians in Rome were persecuted for teaching a faith that opposed the native mythology (Haaren, 2010). Both empires expanded their influence through war: the Romans conquered lands as far away as England, while the Athenians kept mainly to Greece but did repel invaders (like the Persians) and war against other city-states (as in the Peloponnesian Wars) in order to secure their own routes, borders and dominance in the region (Rome similarly destroyed Carthage multiple times so as to maintain its dominance). Both Rome and Athens were culturally and militarily suited to dominate, and this paper will describe how both used the arts, their militaries, their mythology and their philosophy to maintain their empires.

Rome was founded in 753 BC by brothers (Romulus and Remus): their strategy for building their community was based on accepting the outcasts of other societies. This strategy worked well as the Romans were hardened by fighting and united by their shared experiences. Their society was based on fairness because they knew that if they did not look after and respect one another, they would have nothing. Gradually the kingdom grew, with Romulus as their leader (Rome was named for him). Over the centuries, Rome had many kings — but these kings also became very corrupt and eventually the Roman citizens revolted against these corrupt kings and vowed never to have another king over them. This lasted for some time, with Roman leaders being selected by vote (Racine, 2013). Eventually, this too changed: when the Roman soldier Julius Caesar crossed the Rubicon and marched his troops onto the city of Rome a new day dawned. The Romans wanted to crown Caesar king. In truth, Rome was no longer a kingdom, but an empire. Julius Caesar was assassinated shortly thereafter by a group of conspirators. Caesar’s nephew took control of the empire, however, and became the first Roman Emperor.

Don't use plagiarized sources. Get Your Custom Essay on
Comparison of Roman and the Athenian Empires
Just from $9/Page
Order Essay

The Athenian Empire began similarly, with the Grecian people forming out of obscurity but being brought together by war. The Persian invasion of Greece brought out the best in the Athenians: they led the Delian League, which was founded in 478 BC in order to oppose the Persians. This League was similar in a sense to the collective Greek warriors who fought together against Troy, as described by Homer in The Iliad. Homer’s epic poem depicts a group of Greeks of different origins, united by the gods to battle the Trojans. Mythology is dominant throughout the poem and this mythology would play an integral role in the Athenian Empire (Pericles would oversee the construction of many marvelous temples and statues to the gods and goddesses that their culture worshipped) (Racine, 2013). Indeed, as Homer points out, the Greeks from the beginning days of their history had a special sense of their relation to the spiritual and the divine — and their relationship with one another could be complicated or exacerbated by their neglect or disrespect of the gods (a common theme explored by the great Athenian playwrights, from Aeschylus to Sophocles to Euripides). As Homer writes in the opening lines of The Iliad, “And which of the gods was it that sent them to quarrel? It was the son of Jove and Leto; for he was angry with the king and sent a pestilence upon the host to plague the people, because thee son of Atreus had dishonored Chryses his priest” (Homer, 2004, p. 2).

During the Persian invasions, the Greek city-state leaders met in Delos, but the Athenian leader Pericles took command (Athens was the central hub of Greece — it led the way in culture, arts, philosophy, learning, politics, and so on). The League did not last many years, because of in-fighting among the city-states (namely between Athens and Sparta) but the Athenian Empire was effectively at its height during this time, acting as the leader in Greece and operating at the forefront in the tremendous and repeated repulse of the Persian invasion. Pericles oversaw the establishment of democracy in Athens, the expansion of the theater, the rise of artisans and craftsmen, and the building of the Parthenon and the temple of Athena. Pericles helped to impress upon Athenians the importance of honoring the gods and goddesses, which was an important aspect of maintaining Athen’s culture and integrity as an empire during the so-called Age of Pericles. Thus, when Socrates began to teach that in all actuality the myths of gods and goddesses fighting was more likely a projection of human qualities on God than a realistic representation of the divine, the philosopher was condemned to death for corrupting the youth of Athens. Such was the intensity with which the Athenian rulers viewed the importance of upholding the mythology. Ironically, their killing of Socrates only made him all the more famous and important, as it inspired Plato to write his works and caused the Athenian school of philosophy to lay the foundations for Western thought for the coming millennium.

Rome likewise used the same mythology (with Roman names for the gods and goddesses) to cement its culture and provide its citizens a form of worship, which helped to maintain the empire’s cohesion. When Christianity came to Rome under the rule of Caesar, the new religion was driven underground because it was viewed as a threat to Roman society and culture. This persecution did not end until Constantine took the throne. Like Athens, Rome also opposed any foreign city-states that posed an economic or military threat. Cato the Censor (a Roman orator and statesmen) would end every single one of his speeches with the admonition that Carthage must be destroyed as a reminder to his fellow Romans that the African city across the Mediterranean was building up again and could undermine Rome’s prosperity if it was allowed to become a major port hub for trade and commerce (Morley, 2010). Romans heeded Cato’s advice and leveled Carthage to the ground. Athens had sought to do the same with its competitor (Sparta) and its influence in Greece.

Maintenance of the Roman Empire came by way of the sword and by way of building. All roads lead to Rome is the popular saying — and during the Roman Empire this was true, as the Romans erected long roads that stretched out from the city of Rome in all directions into its vast Empire — north, east, south and west. Rome connected all its territories by establishing a sense of pride among its conquered peoples but also by respecting the groups it conquered and allowing them a degree of autonomy and governance so long as they accepted Roman rule and culture (Lamp, 2015). Likewise, Rome supported the theater and poets like Virgil because their works helped to convey the importance, pride, and greatness that all Romans were expected to have for their people and their nation.

In conclusion, the empires of Rome and Athens were similar in the sense that they both used culture and the arts, military strength, and the strategy of combating and warring with other city-states who posed economic or military threats to their empires. The rulers of both empires celebrated the mythology of the realms and condemned those who taught an opposing religious culture or viewpoint: Socrates was condemned in Athens and Christians were condemned by a succession of Roman emperors until the time of Constantine, who ended Christian persecution.


Haaren, J. (2010). Famous Men of Greece. NY: ReadaClassic.

Homer. (2004). The Iliad. NY: Cambridge University Press.

Lamp, K. (2015). Citizens and captives: Depictions of the ‘conquered’ in the Roman

Empire. Advances in the History of Rhetoric, 18(2): 147-161.

Morley, N. (2010). The Roman Empire: Roots of Imperialism. NY: Pluto Press.

Racine, F. (2013). Cosmopolis: Imagining community in late classical Athens and the early Roman Empire. Classical Review, 63(1): 90.

Annotated Bibliography

Haaren, J. (2010). Famous Men of Greece. NY: ReadaClassic.

This classic work by Haaren is certainly a scholarly source, as Haaren was a highly respected classics professor and president of the department of pedagogy at Brooklyn Institute. His Famous Men series has been used by educators for decades to inform students about the history of the ancient civilizations. In this book, Haaren describes the lives and times of various important Grecian figures, including Pericles and Socrates. I plan on using this source to provide information on Athens and what it achieved during its height of empire as well as how it achieved it.

Homer. (2004). The Iliad. NY: Cambridge University Press.

Homer’s epic poem is a classic of literature that has been respected, admired, taught and read for centuries. It provides insight into the Grecian mind as well as how the Greeks used mythology in their own lives. I plan to use this source in order to support the argument that Athens used culture to maintain its empire — by building temples to the gods and goddesses, by celebrating art (drama), and by memorializing the heroic deeds of its ancestors.

Lamp, K. (2015). Citizens and captives: Depictions of the ‘conquered’ in the Roman

Empire. Advances in the History of Rhetoric, 18(2): 147-161.

This is a scholarly source as it appears in a peer-reviewed academic journal. It discusses how the Romans were able to expand their empire so quickly and so effectively by giving some allowances to the people it conquered so long as they accepted the Roman culture. I will use this source to show how the Roman Empire, like the Athenian Empire, used culture to maintain its position.

Morley, N. (2010). The Roman Empire: Roots of Imperialism. NY: Pluto Press.

This source is scholarly as Morley is a Professor of Ancient Economic History and Historical Theory at the University of Bristol and has written several books on these topics. His book on the Roman Empire discusses how Rome was able to maintain its empire by using its military and its cultural influence — especially its emphasis on building and providing aqueducts and roads (as well as entertainments) wherever it spread its empire. I will use this source to show that Rome expanded and maintained its expansion through the combination of military, culture and innovation.

Racine, F. (2013). Cosmopolis: Imagining community in late classical Athens and the early Roman Empire. Classical Review, 63(1): 90.

This source appears in another peer-reviewed academic journal and thus may be considered scholarly. It discusses the ways in which Athens and Rome used the city to support expansion outward. The city constituted the heart of the Empire and gave birth to cultural ideas as well as political expression. These ideas and expressions were then picked up by artists, military generals, and politicians, all of whom gave support to the maintenance of the Empire. I will use this source to show that both Athens and Rome were able to maintain their empires by using what their cities gave them — a vibrant base where philosophy, education, politics, the arts, mythology, and military leaders could be cultivated and exported around their various hubs so as to strengthen and fortify the networks that they constructed outside the cities.

Get Professional Assignment Help Cheaply

Buy Custom Essay

Are you busy and do not have time to handle your assignment? Are you scared that your paper will not make the grade? Do you have responsibilities that may hinder you from turning in your assignment on time? Are you tired and can barely handle your assignment? Are your grades inconsistent?

Whichever your reason is, it is valid! You can get professional academic help from our service at affordable rates. We have a team of professional academic writers who can handle all your assignments.

Why Choose Our Academic Writing Service?

  • Plagiarism free papers
  • Timely delivery
  • Any deadline
  • Skilled, Experienced Native English Writers
  • Subject-relevant academic writer
  • Adherence to paper instructions
  • Ability to tackle bulk assignments
  • Reasonable prices
  • 24/7 Customer Support
  • Get superb grades consistently

Online Academic Help With Different Subjects


Students barely have time to read. We got you! Have your literature essay or book review written without having the hassle of reading the book. You can get your literature paper custom-written for you by our literature specialists.


Do you struggle with finance? No need to torture yourself if finance is not your cup of tea. You can order your finance paper from our academic writing service and get 100% original work from competent finance experts.

Computer science

Computer science is a tough subject. Fortunately, our computer science experts are up to the match. No need to stress and have sleepless nights. Our academic writers will tackle all your computer science assignments and deliver them on time. Let us handle all your python, java, ruby, JavaScript, php , C+ assignments!


While psychology may be an interesting subject, you may lack sufficient time to handle your assignments. Don’t despair; by using our academic writing service, you can be assured of perfect grades. Moreover, your grades will be consistent.


Engineering is quite a demanding subject. Students face a lot of pressure and barely have enough time to do what they love to do. Our academic writing service got you covered! Our engineering specialists follow the paper instructions and ensure timely delivery of the paper.


In the nursing course, you may have difficulties with literature reviews, annotated bibliographies, critical essays, and other assignments. Our nursing assignment writers will offer you professional nursing paper help at low prices.


Truth be told, sociology papers can be quite exhausting. Our academic writing service relieves you of fatigue, pressure, and stress. You can relax and have peace of mind as our academic writers handle your sociology assignment.


We take pride in having some of the best business writers in the industry. Our business writers have a lot of experience in the field. They are reliable, and you can be assured of a high-grade paper. They are able to handle business papers of any subject, length, deadline, and difficulty!


We boast of having some of the most experienced statistics experts in the industry. Our statistics experts have diverse skills, expertise, and knowledge to handle any kind of assignment. They have access to all kinds of software to get your assignment done.


Writing a law essay may prove to be an insurmountable obstacle, especially when you need to know the peculiarities of the legislative framework. Take advantage of our top-notch law specialists and get superb grades and 100% satisfaction.

What discipline/subjects do you deal in?

We have highlighted some of the most popular subjects we handle above. Those are just a tip of the iceberg. We deal in all academic disciplines since our writers are as diverse. They have been drawn from across all disciplines, and orders are assigned to those writers believed to be the best in the field. In a nutshell, there is no task we cannot handle; all you need to do is place your order with us. As long as your instructions are clear, just trust we shall deliver irrespective of the discipline.

Are your writers competent enough to handle my paper?

Our essay writers are graduates with bachelor's, masters, Ph.D., and doctorate degrees in various subjects. The minimum requirement to be an essay writer with our essay writing service is to have a college degree. All our academic writers have a minimum of two years of academic writing. We have a stringent recruitment process to ensure that we get only the most competent essay writers in the industry. We also ensure that the writers are handsomely compensated for their value. The majority of our writers are native English speakers. As such, the fluency of language and grammar is impeccable.

What if I don’t like the paper?

There is a very low likelihood that you won’t like the paper.

Reasons being:

  • When assigning your order, we match the paper’s discipline with the writer’s field/specialization. Since all our writers are graduates, we match the paper’s subject with the field the writer studied. For instance, if it’s a nursing paper, only a nursing graduate and writer will handle it. Furthermore, all our writers have academic writing experience and top-notch research skills.
  • We have a quality assurance that reviews the paper before it gets to you. As such, we ensure that you get a paper that meets the required standard and will most definitely make the grade.

In the event that you don’t like your paper:

  • The writer will revise the paper up to your pleasing. You have unlimited revisions. You simply need to highlight what specifically you don’t like about the paper, and the writer will make the amendments. The paper will be revised until you are satisfied. Revisions are free of charge
  • We will have a different writer write the paper from scratch.
  • Last resort, if the above does not work, we will refund your money.

Will the professor find out I didn’t write the paper myself?

Not at all. All papers are written from scratch. There is no way your tutor or instructor will realize that you did not write the paper yourself. In fact, we recommend using our assignment help services for consistent results.

What if the paper is plagiarized?

We check all papers for plagiarism before we submit them. We use powerful plagiarism checking software such as SafeAssign, LopesWrite, and Turnitin. We also upload the plagiarism report so that you can review it. We understand that plagiarism is academic suicide. We would not take the risk of submitting plagiarized work and jeopardize your academic journey. Furthermore, we do not sell or use prewritten papers, and each paper is written from scratch.

When will I get my paper?

You determine when you get the paper by setting the deadline when placing the order. All papers are delivered within the deadline. We are well aware that we operate in a time-sensitive industry. As such, we have laid out strategies to ensure that the client receives the paper on time and they never miss the deadline. We understand that papers that are submitted late have some points deducted. We do not want you to miss any points due to late submission. We work on beating deadlines by huge margins in order to ensure that you have ample time to review the paper before you submit it.

Will anyone find out that I used your services?

We have a privacy and confidentiality policy that guides our work. We NEVER share any customer information with third parties. Noone will ever know that you used our assignment help services. It’s only between you and us. We are bound by our policies to protect the customer’s identity and information. All your information, such as your names, phone number, email, order information, and so on, are protected. We have robust security systems that ensure that your data is protected. Hacking our systems is close to impossible, and it has never happened.

How our Assignment  Help Service Works

1.      Place an order

You fill all the paper instructions in the order form. Make sure you include all the helpful materials so that our academic writers can deliver the perfect paper. It will also help to eliminate unnecessary revisions.

2.      Pay for the order

Proceed to pay for the paper so that it can be assigned to one of our expert academic writers. The paper subject is matched with the writer’s area of specialization.

3.      Track the progress

You communicate with the writer and know about the progress of the paper. The client can ask the writer for drafts of the paper. The client can upload extra material and include additional instructions from the lecturer. Receive a paper.

4.      Download the paper

The paper is sent to your email and uploaded to your personal account. You also get a plagiarism report attached to your paper.

smile and order essaysmile and order essay PLACE THIS ORDER OR A SIMILAR ORDER WITH US TODAY AND GET A PERFECT SCORE!!!

order custom essay paper

Our Free Services
  • Access to a pool of expert academic writers
  • Experienced Academic writers
  • Timely delivery
  • Any kind of assignment
  • Subject-relevant academic writer
  • Full compliance with instructions
  • Direct communication with your writer
  • Get superb grades consistently