Chapter 12 Summary
LESSON 1- THE ROMAN WAY OF LIFE
• The capital of the Roman Empire was Rome. Wealthy nobles,
artisans, shopkeepers, and enslaved people lived in the city.
• The Roman family was important in Roman culture. The
father was the head of the family. Women had few rights
and were not full citizens.
• As Rome conquered more territories, the number of
enslaved people increased. Enslaved people worked in
homes, on farms, and helped build bridges and roads
throughout the Empire.
• Romans adapted Greek ideas about religion, science,
architecture, art, literature, and theater.
• The Roman language, Latin, served as the basis for many
LESSON 2- Rome’s Decline
• During the a.d. 200s, the power of Rome declined because
of a weakened government, a failing economy, and invasions
by Germanic groups.
• Emperors such as Diocletian and Constantine tried to reform
• Emperor Constantine moved the capital of the Empire to the
city of Byzantium. The city was renamed Constantinople.
Today, it is called Istanbul, Turkey.
• Emperor Theodosius divided the Empire into two empires:
the Western Roman Empire, with its capital in Rome, and
the Eastern Roman Empire, with its capital in
• Over the next several hundred years, German invaders—
including the Vandals and Visigoths—gained control of most
of the Western empire.
• Rome had a lasting impact on the modern world. Even
today, Rome influences law, government, art, architecture,
language, and religion.