Jump to content
UNRV Ancient Roman Empire Forums

E. I.Smith

Plebes
  • Content Count

    19
  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won

    9

E. I.Smith last won the day on March 30 2018

E. I.Smith had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

1 Neutral

1 Follower

About E. I.Smith

  • Rank
    Miles
  • Birthday 05/24/1985

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
    https://www.biblediscourses.com
  • Yahoo
    officialbiblediscourses@yahoo.com

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Miami, Florida
  • Interests
    My interests include studying history, politics, law, and religion.

Recent Profile Visitors

680 profile views
  1. In the first-century A.D., Jesus, being from Nazareth, was considered a hillbilly on account of Nazareth being a rural hill town, that was not a particularly thriving town, especially in comparison to Jerusalem, Old Nineveh, or Damascus. Christians were seen by the Romans as hillbillies on account of their perceived superstitious and "backward" ways and beliefs. I believe that Christians were seen as a cult in the sense that they were independent of the oversight of their respective governments, they had beliefs that did not coincide with the beliefs of established Judaic religions, they professed a belief in a divine figure that was also a mortal, and they met in secret meetings and adhered to a common creed. In the Alexamenos Graffito, the perception of Christianity by the early third-century Romans was on full display. The really amazing this about the Graffito is that is has survived for 1818 years to this very day. It goes to show that non-traditional depictions of Jesus Christ, especially bold ones like the Graffito, inspire contemplation in people.
  2. So then, the Romans resented the Judeo-Christian's disregard for their gods and god-men in favor of a single all-powerful God, were repulsed by legends of grotesque rituals and saw early Christians as undesirable "hillbillies" that were incapable of becoming useful.
  3. On May 31, 1578, the catacombs of Rome were accidentally rediscovered on the Via Salaria, an ancient Roman road in Northern Italy. A man named Antonio Bosio eventually discovered thirty separate entrances into these catacombs, which are several stories underground and served as a burial place for Christians as well as for Roman citizens of other faiths. The catacombs are a fascinating part of Roman and early Christian history. Seeing them in person would be a true privilege. https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qimg-ea88bb0a1eadcf27d755dc877601509f.webp
  4. In Iudæa, using crosses for crucifixions was about ensuring the public humiliation of the condemned and warning onlookers against engaging in certain behaviors. If Christ, by order of the Romans, was impaled in a remote forest and summarily buried, then other insurrectionists in Iudæa would not have had the sense of fear and trembling that would deter them from continuing in anti-government activities. It should be noted that in the Roman Empire, namely in Iudæa, crucifixions were generally used for insurrectionists e.g., Jesus Christ and revolutionary guerilla fighters e.g., Barabbas. The public nature of crucifixions and their exceptional cruelty were devised to strike fear into those who would commit crimes against the State.
  5. Hello all, I joined UNRV in December and never introduced myself. I am an online broadcaster that focuses on the topics of history, politics, law, and religion. I hope to expand my knowledge on ancient Rome by being a member of this site. Cheers.
  6. That is really interesting, especially the part about the soldiers not being held to the stringent standards of subordination that modern-day military personnel are held to. You appear to be well-learned in Roman history. Please take a look at my post entitled, Roman Legends, The Alexamenos Graffito, and Proof of Christ's Existence and tell me what you think. Did the pre-Constantine Romans deride the legend of Jesus Christ to accomplish anything of note, or were they simply repulsed by Christianity by virtue of its apparent roots in Jewish superstition?
  7. I wouldn’t say that the Alexamenos graffito is proof of the existence of Jesus Christ; it is rather proof that the legend of Jesus Christ was present in Rome, Italia, during the early third century. The Alexamenos graffito, which was drawn in A.D. 200, can be described as a stick-figure drawing of a Roman civilian worshipping an image of a crucified person that has a donkey’s head. The inscription, Ᾰλεξᾰ́μενος σέβεται θεόν, which is written in Greek, translates to “Alexamenos worships his god.” The drawing was scratched onto a plaster wall in a house that is located on Palatine hill, which is one of the Seven Hills of Rome. The house was purchased by the Roman Emperor, Caligula, circa A.D. 40, and was later changed to a boarding school for Roman noble’s messenger boys. Some observers of the drawing conclude that the drawing is proof of Jesus’ existence as it was drawn a mere 166 years after his death, and describes the crucified being as a “god.” The Alexamenos graffito can effectively be seen as a drawing that one student scratched onto a wall to tease another student named Alexamenos. Perhaps Alexamenos expressed an affinity for Christianity and his peer took the opportunity to make fun of the boy by scribbling a cartoon of Alexamenos’ god. It should be noted that Christianity was roundly derided in Rome at this time, and Christians were believed to engage in a religious practice called Onolatry (donkey worship,) which would explain the depiction of Jesus Christ as a humanoid donkey. I am inclined to believe that the Alexamenos graffito was a childish prank, not much unlike the kinds of pranks that children of today engage in, e.g., writing puerile messages on bathroom stalls, school lockers, and classroom chalkboards. The boarding school for messenger boys was without a doubt filled with young boys that occasionally became bored and engaged in mischief. In A.D. 200, the Gospel of Mark, one of the books of the Four Gospels, had already been printed, and it is likely that the legend of Jesus Christ was fairly well-known in Rome. Furthermore, by this time, in history, Christianity had already become an institution in the Roman Empire, although still a fledgling institution, as only one country in the entire world, namely Edessa, southeast Turkey, accepted it as the State religion. This would mean that the core doctrines of Christianity were already in the consciences of the populaces of quite a few Roman provinces, and certainly the capital city of the empire where the drawing was found. The drawing was taken out of the house at Palatine and is now located in the Palatine Hill Museum in Rome, Italy. Public Domain Pictures of the original drawing and a trace-over of it can be seen here: Picture 1 is the original and Picture 2 is the trace-over. Picture 3 is a screen capture of a boss battle in Konami’s 1993 video game, Castlevania: Rondo of Blood. An image of a cross that resembles the Alexamenos graffito, on account of the humanoid figure on the cross accompanied by a deformed, animal-like, head, can be seen on the screen capture. This goes to show that Roman legends and Christianity have both had a profound influence on modern entertainment. https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qimg-e2916d33ac96818729446c243d021f02.webp https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qimg-aa7860139f294a1c26abc31521b4fed1.webp https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qimg-3846b89f1f5fd6dbaef11fb2a0b23f7e
  8. The entry requirements for becoming a soldier in the Roman army were relatively basic as there were Roman soldiers in many Roman provinces, protectorates, and client states from France to the Levant. The Roman Empire, wanting to maximize the number of soldiers at its disposal, made it a point to keep the requirements basic and to keep as many soldiers battle-ready as possible. The requirements for entrance into the Roman army were as follows: A man must be a freeborn Roman citizen, able to pass a medical exam, be at least 5′ 8″ tall, be at least 20 years of age, be able to march at least 20 miles in a day, and be willing to commit to 25 years of service to the Roman army. As you can see, the requirements were all about the physical abilities and the level of loyalty that each prospective soldier possessed. Roman soldiers were measured on their ability to act rather than to reason, and they were expected to do whatever their centurion told them to do in the heat of battle.
  9. The Legio X Fretensis was a Roman legion founded by Augustus Caesar (who at that time went by the name Gaius Octavius) in the year 41 B.C. The legion, which lasted from 41 B.C. to A.D. 410, was famous for its successful military campaigns throughout Judea during the First Jewish-Roman war. It was also famous for its use of cutting-edge tactical weapons, namely the ballista, which was a catapult that could launch projectiles up to 400 meters away. As the First Jewish-Roman war neared its conclusion, with Legio X Fretensis having previously captured nearly every Zealot stronghold, Emperor Vespasian of the Roman Empire ordered them to siege the remaining Zealot strongholds of Herodium, Machaerus, and Masada. One legend concerning Legio X Fretensis, set during the legion’s march towards Masada, tells the story of how Lucilius Bassus, the commander of Legio X circa A.D. 71, captured Eleazer, an enemy Zealot, as he was taunting the legion while outside of the safety of his fortress. This act was presumably an attempt by Eleazer to boost the morale of his comrades, whose defeat to Legio X was imminent. Lucilius Bassus then had Eleazer stripped, tied to a wooden stake and whipped in full view of his comrades. Bassus then ordered his troops to erect a cross for Eleazer to be crucified on. Eleazer’s screams and pleas for mercy were so horrific that his comrades offered the Romans a ransom; if the Romans freed Eleazer, then the Zealots would vacate the fortress. The Romans, having no interest in engaging in such a transaction, disposed of Eleazer, took his comrades as slaves, and then proceeded to continue its march to Masada, arriving in A.D. 73. The Romans garrisoned the fortress of Masada, only to find that the Zealots had burned the fortress and committed a mass suicide amounting to 960 soldiers. This story is a testament to the bitterness and desperation that accompanied the First Jewish-Roman War.
  10. The siege of Carthage was decided years before the Third Punic War (149–146 B.C.) actually took place. In the Roman Republic during this time period, there were Consuls and Censors that acted jointly as the supreme political authorities. Cato the elder who was Censor of Rome from 184–149 B.C., made a trip to Carthage in 157 B.C. to negotiate peace between Carthage and Numidia. When Cato returned to Rome, he decided to rally support for a Roman invasion of Carthage. He told the Roman Senate stories of how wealthy Carthage was, and that it was “crowded with vigorous young men, was abounded with immense quantities of gold and silver, and had prodigious magazines of arms and all war-like stories.” Cato then displayed to the Senate a bundle of African figs that were the biggest and most beautiful the Roman senators had ever seen. He then informed the Senate that only a three-day journey separated the Romans from the Carthaginians. Cato believed further that the Carthaginians were becoming too rich and too powerful and thus posed a continual threat to the prosperity of Rome. Cato often and famously told the Senate, “Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam” which translates to “However, I think that Carthage must be destroyed.” Cato’s political opponent, Publius Corculum, did not want Rome to go to war with the Carthaginians because he feared that his countrymen, who were already swelled with pride on account of their regional dominance, would lose all sense of decency and humanity should they begin conquering foreign nations. Furthermore, Corculum did not see the Carthaginians as an immediate threat to Roman prosperity overall. Corculum did, however, see them as dangerous enough to where he figured that an invasion into Carthaginian territory would prove disastrous for the Roman military, its government, and its people. In the end, however, Cato the Elder’s arguments in favor of a Roman invasion of Carthage prevailed in the Senate. The official declaration of war that was proclaimed by the Senate asserted that Carthage broke a 50-year peace treaty that it had with Rome when it went to war with Numidia, a North African nation that was an ally of Rome. It should be noted that the Romans themselves instigated the battles between the Carthaginians and the Numidians so as to have a reason to invade Carthage. Furthermore, the Senate proclaimed that the Carthaginians mistreated the son of the king of Numidia in their battles with the Numidians, furthering the Romans’ justification for an invasion. It was under these pretexts that the Romans invaded Carthage and the rest is history. By the end of 146 B.C., the Romans, having commanded an army of 80,000 soldiers, had completely annihilated Carthage and for the next 581 years , Carthage remained subject to Roman rule.
  11. As I was re-reading the Bible, I came across a story detailing St. Paul's journey to Rome to face trial for his Christian preaching in Palestine (Acts 28:1–6). This story has some pretty neat parallels to an ancient Egyptian story that has religious overtones in its own right. In this story, which takes place circa A.D. 60, the Apostle Paul and his fellow prisoners were shipwrecked on the Island of Malta, an island approximately 425 miles south of Rome. On Malta, St. Paul was bitten on his hand by a viper; being unfazed by the attack, St. Paul shook the beast off into a fire to the amazement of the native Maltans. This story has parallels to the Egyptian "Tale of the Shipwrecked Sailor" (circa 2000 B.C.) in which an Egyptian sailor is shipwrecked on an island, and while offering burnt offerings to the gods, met a giant serpent claiming to be the “Lord of Punt,” Punt being an important trading partner with Egypt. The serpent then makes the sailor’s acquaintance and asks the sailor to make him a good name in his hometown once he leaves the island. The serpent then gives the sailor gifts, of among other things, spices, incense, elephants' tusks, giraffe’s tails, greyhounds, and baboons. This image is a public domain image of the approximate location of the land of Punt. https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qimg-667b19f509a73e898ec4f0b10603fb1c
  12. E. I.Smith

    The Language of Ancient Rome

    It has always fascinated me that while the Roman Empire lasted (in unison) from 27 B.C. - A.D. 395, that the language prevalent in Rome, namely Latin, has remained so pervasive. It would appear to me, that English, which has numerous elements of Latin in it, (up to 80% Latin), remains the most universally spoken language that there is. In addition, it would appear to me, that the reason for this, is the easily acquired sounds and associations associated with the English language. Furthermore, the Romance languages of Spanish, French, Italian, Romanian, Portuguese, and Italian appear to be the second languages most sought after by students in the United States.
  13. The apochryphal literature of the Holy Bible includes the telling of Bible stories that are not in the Bible's text, but fit into the Bible's overall narrative. You might enjoy reading the book of 1 Maccabees for insights into the time periods that you write about. The Maccabees in particular feature the Roman Republic as a critical component of its narrative.
  14. I have read several articles on the significance of the Temple of Jupiter Optimus Maximus. This Rome based monument was particularly useful to Roman authorities. It was a place where Roman politicians would worship Roman gods and offer sacrifices to a cult statue of Jupiter, it was a political conference center, and likewise, a fellowshipping hall for Roman politicians. It also served as a public records archive, as well as the endpoint for Roman triumph processions. The Temple, being the centerpiece of Area Capitolina, was an important religious, political, and cultural symbol that was rebuilt four times, a true testament to the temple's importance to Rome's cultural identity. I found a picture of a relief, circa A.D. 180, that depicts Emperor Marcus Aurelius making an animal sacrifice to the Roman god Jupiter in the presence of fellow Roman political figures. This temple would have been the fourth one constructed.
  15. Legio I Maximiana Thebanorum is the most famous Roman Legion because it is the only Roman Legion to produce a venerated Saint. This Saint, Saint Maurice, a Christian, was martyred, along with his entire Legion, by decimation, in 297, by Roman Emperor Maximian. The reason for these executions was because St. Maurice and his Legion disobeyed direct orders from Rome to slaughter local Swiss Christians while the Legion was on assignment in the Swiss Alps region. St. Maurice was first venerated for his actions circa 926. He is venerated in Oriental Orthodoxy, Coptic Orthodoxy, the Catholic Church, and the Eastern Orthodox Church. He is the patron saint of Holy Roman Emperors and infantrymen among other things. See the link below for Renaissance-era artwork depicting St. Maurice. Bible Discourses on Pinterest
×