Talk:Ancient Rome

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Former good article nominee Ancient Rome was a History good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
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November 15, 2006 Good article nominee Not listed
September 25, 2014 Good article nominee Not listed
Article Collaboration and Improvement Drive This article was on the Article Collaboration and Improvement Drive for the week of December 11, 2006.
Current status: Former good article nominee
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Notable Ancient Romans list[edit]

User:Per82 started this list about a month ago. No rationale other than "added content" has been given. No other editor has added to it. Now, User:Student7 is placing "citation needed" templates all over it (I think a blue-link indicates enough notability, but we differ in our interpretations of WP:LIST). However, the list serves little purpose. If there are any names that need to be mentioned, that aren't already in the article, they should be included in the text, not a bare list without a well-defined rationale. I think that the list should be removed, since it has become contentious and cluttered. Dhtwiki (talk) 06:44, 26 September 2015 (UTC)

I agree. There's already a list of ancient Romans for those who like lists of links. No need to duplicate it here. --Nicknack009 (talk) 08:23, 26 September 2015 (UTC)
Agree. It would be a challenge to select ancient Romans that should appear on this page, from all of the others. Student7 (talk) 17:04, 26 September 2015 (UTC)
I was going to suggest a separate list, but that was before I saw here that one already exists. That extant list could use some work, too (alphabetization seems quite varied, linkage could be better, dates added and a sortable table made, etc.). Dhtwiki (talk) 00:46, 27 September 2015 (UTC)
User:Per82 has posted on my talk page, saying:
"Hello Nick! The reason I included a list of notable Ancient Romans is because I wanted to give the reader a list of Romans who significantly changed Roman history. The Romans I have added are great Generals, lawmakers and emperors. The reader when studying these individuals will have a full grasp of the entire history of Rome. I am aware of the list of ancient Romans, but most are insignificant to the casual reader and of little value to the professional historian."
I'm copying it here so all the discussion is in one place. The point is, lists always turn into massive undifferentiated data dumps. Start another one just for the ones you think are significant, and other editors will show up and add more that they think are significant, until you end up with another massive undifferentiated data dump. If it was up to me I'd ban lists entirely. They bloat articles until they're split off into separate list articles, they're not very informative or useful, and they duplicate the function of categories, which at least have the useful ability to be organised in a structure.
Lots of "Romans who significantly changed Roman history" will naturally be linked in the text of the article, their significance meaning they are mentioned a general overview of the history of ancient Rome. As well as being of dubious usefuless and bound to bloat out of control the second you take your eye of it, the list is doubly redundant. --Nicknack009 (talk) 08:06, 27 September 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 10 November 2015[edit]

please change the words "children of Rome" into a link to this page https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Children_of_Ancient_Rome so viewers have easy access to more information on this topic. Chiappe4 (talk) 00:22, 10 November 2015 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done Stickee (talk) 01:01, 10 November 2015 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 20 November 2015[edit]

In the penultimate intro paragraph, the article mentions the state of "Palmyra" which it says was a splinter state during the Crisis of the Third Century. This links to the article on the city of Palmyra when it should actually link to the more general Palmyrene Empire, which was the name of the actual splinter state. 128.84.124.208 (talk) 03:07, 20 November 2015 (UTC)

Yes check.svg Done - I've changed the link. Dhtwiki (talk) 09:33, 20 November 2015 (UTC)

Reconsider protected status?[edit]

Just because I don't see it having been revisited lately, do folks think the semi-protected status is really needed?

Looks like it has been in place for years based on vandalism that was happening way back then. Perhaps it's time to reopen and see if editors behave?

(Personally, I have no opinion on whether protection is needed. Just wanted to bring it up for anyone who might.) Crcarlin (talk) 20:58, 23 May 2016 (UTC)

The Colosseum article was unprotected last August after being semi-protected for five years. However, it was re-protected after five-and-a-half months. That article had 53 edits in January. Of those, 42 were either vandalism or reverts, 6 edits to do with an inexperienced editor getting reverted after good faith changes, and 2 edits to the categorisation by an experienced editor. As it happens the only substantial and lasting changes to the text were made by an (the remaining three edits that month) adding some pop culture information.
Granted, this article gets about half of the traffic of the article on the Colosseum, but I suspect given the topic and the developed nature of the content we would encounter a similar situation. My feeling is that this article is sufficiently well developed that the barrier is high for people making their first edits, so we're likely to see mostly vandalism. Nev1 (talk) 16:14, 24 June 2016 (UTC)

Justinian[edit]

The sourced reference to Justinian I seems to be inaccurate. "During the 6th century, Justinian I briefly reconquered Northern Africa and Italy. But within a few years of Justinian's death, Byzantine possessions in the West were reduced to southern Italy and Sicily."

Justinian died in 565. His land holdings in Hispania (the province of Spania) survived to 624, 59 years following his death. His land holdings in North Africa (the Exarchate of Africa) survived to 698, 133 years following his death. His land holdings in Italy (the Exarchate of Ravenna, with its capital in Northern Italy) survived to 751, 186 years following his death. Byzantine land holdings in southern Italy were later reorganized into the Catepanate of Italy and survived to 1071, 506 years following the death of Justinian. Byzantine influence in Italy continued with the Italian campaign of reconquest (1155-1158). The Byzantine army departed Italy for the last tine in 1158, 593 years following the death of Justinian.

The description of a quick collapse of the Byzantine control in the West points to this source being unfamiliar with Byzantine history. Unless several centuries count as "a few years". Dimadick (talk) 13:18, 24 June 2016 (UTC)

Fixed. --Tataryn (talk) 22:24, 24 June 2016 (UTC)

Should for the time periods of rome, the byzantine empire be considered?[edit]

Should we add the birth to end times of the byzantine empire along with the kingdom, republic and empire?Virophage (talk) 21:55, 5 July 2016 (UTC)

Yes. The significance of the Western Roman Empire is already overstated, given than it was the poorer and more unstable part of the Roman world. Dimadick (talk) 00:39, 6 July 2016 (UTC)
This article is on ancient Rome and having it be more about the Byzantine Empire, which was non-Latin, Greek-speaking in its culture, and which is well linked-to from here, would be an extension that I think is unnecessary, if not unwise, not least of all because this is already a very long article. Dhtwiki (talk) 10:11, 6 July 2016 (UTC)
The problem is that the distinction between Roman and Byzantine is artificial to begin with and would be incomprehensible to the Byzantines themselves (it was coined by Hieronymus Wolf in 1557, a century following the end of the Empire), the Byzantine Empire continued using Latin as an official language until the reforms of Heraclius in the 7th century (or to quote the relative article "The use of Latin as the language of administration persisted until formally abolished by Heraclius in the 7th century."), and that Vulgar Latin remained a significant minority language in the Byzantine Empire in subsequent centuries. Dimadick (talk) 07:02, 7 July 2016 (UTC)
All articles on related subjects don't need to be about the same thing or have the same perspective. This article's focus is not the Roman Empire, which has its own article, but Ancient Rome - the city of Rome and its influence in antiquity. The Byzantine empire was the continuation of the Roman empire ruled from another capital, but it did not, for the most part, include Rome itself. That's not an artificial distinction. Rome continued to exist after the fall of the western empire. If anything, this article includes a little too much about Byzantine activity in the west not involving Italy, and not enough about the barbarian rulers of Rome and the rise of the Popes in late antiquity. --Nicknack009 (talk) 07:55, 7 July 2016 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Roman civilization begun in the Italian Peninsula but by the time of the Roman Empire it had spread far from its lowly origins. I do not think an emphasis on Italy is reasonable here, as already in the 3rd century its importance to the Empire has significantly diminished. The main events of the Crisis of the Third Century and the Tetrarchy took place all over the areas of the Empire and several of the emperors of the time never set foot in Rome.

You are quire mistaken if you think that the Byzantine Empire always failed to control the city of Rome. Belisarius captured Rome from the Ostrogoths in 536 and defended the city during the Siege of Rome (537–38). With various temporary losses, Rome stayed part of the Empire until the early 750s. We have an article on the Byzantine Papacy (537-752) detailing how the Byzantine authorities appointed Popes, or at least confirmed their elevations. And to quote just a small part of it: "With the exception of Pope Martin I, no pope during this period questioned the authority of the Byzantine monarch to confirm the election of the bishop of Rome before consecration could occur; however, theological conflicts were common between pope and emperor in the areas such as monotheletism and iconoclasm. Greek-speakers from Greece, Syria, and Byzantine Sicily replaced members of the powerful Roman nobles in the papal chair during this period. Rome under the Greek popes constituted a "melting pot" of Western and Eastern Christian traditions, reflected in art as well as liturgy."

The period ended because the Exarchate of Ravenna, the main Byzantine area in the Italian Peninsula, fell in 751, with Ravenna itself captured by the Kingdom of the Lombards. The Popes feared a Lombard invasion of Rome and sought other protectors, with Pope Stephen II managing to secure the protection and alliance of Pepin the Short. Pepin invaded Italy, defeated the Lombards, and granted authority over captured areas to the Popes. The Papal States were established in 754.

The distinction is always artificial because the Byzantines preserved Roman civilization, they did not loose it in the process.

"Rome continued to exist after the fall of the western empire." No dispute there, and the "finality" of the fall of the Western Roman Empire might be overstated. Romans did not cease to exist because a single emperor was deposed.

"not enough about the barbarian rulers of Rome". Possibly a good idea to cover them as well, though these so-called "barbarians" led relatively short-lived regimes. The first of them was Odoacer, who controlled the Italian Peninsula from 476 to his military defeat and murder in 493. He failed to establish a dynasty of his own. His enemy and successor was Theoderic the Great who continued to rule until his death in 526. He established the Ostrogothic Kingdom, but it only survived to 553/554. Most of his successors were involved in fighting the so-called Gothic War (535-554) against the Byzantine Empire. They lost the war and the kingdom was conquered by the Byzantines, but the unintended result of twenty years of war was the devastation and depopulation of the Italian Peninsula. The Lombards invaded Byzantine Italy in 568 and established the Kingdom of the Lombards (568-774). But the Lombards never did manage to conquer the entire Peninsula and failed to establish control over the city of Rome. The Kingdom of the Lombards was conquered by Charlemagne in the 774, and he did manage to establish Frankish rule over most of Northern and Central Italy,though not the Southern part of the Peninsula and Sicily. I am not certain whether you want to also cover the Carolingian Empire in this history of Rome. The entire period from the rise of Odoacer (476) to the conquest of Charlemagne (774) is only 298 years. About the same distance in time between the rise of Augustus (27 BC) and the rise of Aurelian (270).

I am not really certain what you mean by the rise of the Popes in Late Antiquity. Some of the Popes both before and after the fall of the Western Roman Empire were relatively major players in the politics of the Christian world, but almost all of them were still subordinate to emperors and kings. They could be deposed, exiled, and even murdered. The most notable "rebel" Pope in this entire period is Pope Martin I (649-655) who was elected and consecrated without imperial approval and tried to establish a mostly independent regime. He was arrested by the Byzantines in 653 and spend the rest of his life in exile in Chersonesus, a Byzantine colony in Crimea. (Admittedly his supposed collaboration with the Rashidun Caliphate against the Byzantine interests did not help his case.) Dimadick (talk) 20:45, 11 July 2016 (UTC)

The division may be artificial, but it has to be made. Or we'd just have one long article on everything. It is usual to consider the Dominate of Diocletian the beginning of an absolute, Persian-style, non-Roman-style monarchy. The division into east and west might not have been felt at the time but it is now viewed as splitting off the Hellenistic eastern half, which never owed its civilization to Rome as much as western Europe did, and which went its own way culturally, linguistically, etc. Dhtwiki (talk) 06:08, 12 July 2016 (UTC)